Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Newsletter #2 On The Way!

Back in March I decided to start a monthly newsletter as a way to let down my hair and connect on a more personal level with my readers. It was the first place that I announced Sincerely, Jackie, and the support was overwhelming - so overwhelming, in fact, that I had to send that first newsletter three times, just to keep up with the number of folks signing up!

I'll be sending another newsletter this Friday, May 31st, so if you haven't signed up yet, you should sign up right here. You'll be the first to hear about some exciting news, and you'll get the latest and greatest around life, the shop, and happenings behind the scenes.

Grab your cup of coffee, and join me by signing up.


Two Years

Two years ago today I got to marry my high school sweetheart and my very best friend. I am literally in shock that it's been two years since we were married. We were blessed with a heck of an awesome celebration and we often talk about finding ways to do it all over again. People always say the marriage should be more beautiful than the wedding, and I think that's why we want to do it over and over and over again - we want to keep celebrating our marriage, because it's been a beautiful two years and we've cherished every moment of it.

Happy Anniversary Mike!

*photo from BE Creative Photography

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

2013 National Stationery Show Recap

I am honestly feeling a little down and blue now that that National Stationery Show is over and I'm returning to work. I took off the entire week of NSS and I am SO glad that I did. Last year I only took one day off, and I regretted it BIG TIME. So this year, I took off an entire week, and I still don't feel like it was enough time.

I spent three days with some of the most amazing people - from familiar Minted friends, to my virtual stationery buddies - I can say that, without a doubt, the stationery industry houses the most talented, genuine, kindest people that exist. It's so humbling to be a part of the community.

While I could gush for hours about how much I love everybody, I thought instead you would prefer to read a few highlights.

NSS started off with a casual designer meet-up that I organized at The Jane Hotel. The room we were planning on hanging out in was mysteriously closed, so we took over the entire bad instead. It was kind of a "just hang out and catch up" type of get together, and that's exactly what we did. We chatted, laughed, snacked, laughed, and even ended the night playing subway roulette (you know that game, the one where you try to take a NYC subway on the weekend, and it turns out it's going along a different line, and then you end up in who-knows-where and you try to guess which subway might take you back to where you want to go? Yea, that game).

Here's a group shot of almost all the designers that came out Sunday night. We're missing a handful, but we're all here in spirit:

Back row, from left: Hailey, Anita, Kristen, Kimberly, Carol, Melanie, Lori, Chelsey Middle Row, from left: Carrie, Aspacia, Jill, Lauren, Amy, Nam, Kristie, Dawn Bottom Row, from left: Jen, Hannah, me

I got home that night well after midnight, which, for me, is crazy late (remember, I'm usually conked out on the sofa by 9pm). The Mexican we ate at 9pm gave me heartburn, so I crashed on the sofa for a few hours before driving into the Javits Center for my first day of walking NSS.

My favorite part of walking the show is seeing all of my paper pals kicked butt in their own booths. While I don't think that exhibiting is the right thing for me or my business, I really admire all of the ladies (and gents) that do it. The effort they put in is absolutely insane, and I love seeing the creative booths and amazing art they display. I have to admit, I am pretty crumby at taking pictures while I walk the show, so I'll send you over to Oh So Beautiful Paper to see all of Nole's recaps. She rocks, and thank goodness she captures all of the amazing stationery!

Anyway, after walking the show all day on Monday, Minted hosted a part for all of the Minted designers that were in town. It was at KTCHN Restaurant and was the perfect way to end a day full of walking (read, good food, comfy chairs, and great company). I'll also add that, thanks to Natasha from Minted, I had my very first (and oh-so-amazing) macaron.

After another late night (although, this time sans the heartburn), I was back and ready to go bright and early for day two of walking the show. One of the best parts of NSS is all the awesome swag and goodies that vendors give out - it's like the stationery version of trick or treating.

Hands down, my most favorite goodie came from the fabulous ladies at Ladyfingers Letterpress. Arley-Rose is one of the most talented hand letterers, and her live demos at their booth were mesmerizing. I caught them during a lull and she whipped up this awesome piece for me for my upcoming anniversary. She literally created it in under 2 minutes. I die.

The only way to end yet another awesome day, is with yet another awesome party. Thanks to Nole (and Minted + all the other sponsors) for throwing the kick-ass Paper Party '13. An entire room filled with everybody in the stationery industry + a photobooth = great times.

Here, again, is why I so love this community:

I'm so sad that it's all over, but am incredibly grateful for the time I got to spend with friends new and old. The outpouring of love and support for Sincerely, Jackie was heartwarming, and was exactly the encouragement I needed. I left feeling empowered and determined to keep working harder for my little business. So much has changed since last year's NSS, and I cannot wait for next year to see where I land and to catch up with everybody again.


Thursday, May 16, 2013

Find Sincerely, Jackie on Twitter, Pinterest & Instagram

One of the scariest parts of re-branding, for me at least, is the idea of losing my followers because of a name change. However, I have finally stopped letting fear run my business, and I have taken the reins back.

After announcing Sincerely, Jackie last week, I quickly went to work updating all of my social media handles and letting my followers know that I'm the same person,  just with a new (better) name. I'll also be leaving my profile picture the same, so if you see a curly haired girl, it's still me!

For a reminder, this is me:

If you were already following me on Twitter, Pinterest, or Instagram, you may have already noticed a change. Unfortunately, the handle "sincerelyjackie" is already in use just about everywhere (luckily it's being used by a variety of different people, aptly named Jackie, who find the name as charming as I do. I wish I could sweet talk them to hand the name over, but alas, I am not that persuasive). So I have instead decided to go ahead and use the following:

Twitter: @jackiemdesign
Pinterest: JackieMDesign
Instagram: SincerelyJackiePaper

To make things easier, I have also made my "personal" name on all of the accounts Sincerely, Jackie. This way you can find me by either JackieMDesign or Sincerely, Jackie. See, easy!

I invite you all to join me in my day to day posts and behind the scene antics!

(oh, and a Facebook page is coming soon! Hold tight!)


Monday, May 13, 2013

That Thing That Scares You: Dive In Head First!

For months now, I have been planning, working, designing, and creating a whole new purpose and business for myself. While I wanted to wait until everything was perfect, so that I could pull back the curtain and show you all of the amazing thing at once, I instead found myself holding back in fear.

On Friday, I kicked fear to the curb and I announced my new business name: Sincerely, Jackie.

I don't have my website ready yet (soon though, I promise!), I don't have the new items in the shop, I haven't finished the new Facebook page, and I don't even have all of my final business cards back from the printer.

But I feel amazing.

Before the announcement, I think I put so much pressure on myself to be perfect that I actually began setting myself up for failure. Nothing in life is perfect, so why was I trying so hard to do the impossible?

By letting go and diving in, head first, without over analyzing, over thinking, or over planning, I have managed to do the one thing that I have been afraid of. I have launched Sincerely, Jackie successfully.

Thank you all for your kind messages and words of support, it looks like we're all excited about this new chapter!


Friday, May 10, 2013

Sincerely, Jackie

Folks, I am ready to share my little secret, the project that has been consuming every moment of my life lately, and the one thing that feels so true to my purpose, that I cannot even begin to explain it.

Back in February, I got a phone call from Jess Lively. It was out of the blue, and I sat, shocked, for quite some time after we chatted. She wanted to work with me. Somebody I have admired reached out to me, to work with me. It kind of knocked my feet out, I was so floored. Little did I know, but that conversation would change my life. It put into motion a new business purpose, new design projects,  new confidence, and a handful of new friendships.

In March, I attended Jess's Business and Life With Intention Workshops, where my future continued to take shape. I had been struggling with Believe Notes for some time, and I was allowing myself to make excuses for holding back the business because I felt like the business wasn't truly representing me and what I had to offer. During Jess's workshop, all of the participants were asked to write down the things that come naturally to them, and to think about how those things help people. I jotted down words like "talking, connecting, designing, simple, clean, quality, cherish, believing in yourself, vulnerability, let it be". As I wrote, I was getting more into the real meaning of who I am, and I was getting farther away from what I had set Believe Notes up to be. We went around the group and shared what we wrote, eliciting strategic thinking and feedback. When it was my turn, I was floundering a bit in connecting Believe Notes to my purpose. Then, Elizabeth interrupted and said "Jackie, you are so sincere in who you are, and I just don't think 'Believe Notes' is you".

Jess had kept saying that the things in your business should feel like a warm cozy sweater, so when Elizabeth said "what about 'Sincerely, Jackie'?", I was suddenly transported to a comfy spot in front of a fireplace, wearing my favorite sweater and sipping hot tea, I knew I had my new business name and purpose.

So, with that, the wait is finally over. I am so thrilled and excited to announce that, coming as soon as possible, Sincerely, Jackie will be my new name.

I love designing charmingly simple, yet perfectly sophisticated wedding invitations. I love getting to know my clients and becoming a part of their life - from weddings, to new homes and births. I love having the opportunity to do what I love and love what I do, and I am so excited to able to bring more of what I love into my business.

Over the next few weeks, you will notice new branding, a new blog & shop title, and some other small updates. As I continue to roll out Sincerely, Jackie, I will be sure to share what is happening and if there are any changes that you need to know about. I invite you to join me in my journey and I'd love to hear what you think of the new business direction!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Saying Goodbye to Believe Notes

This has been an emotional few weeks. This coming Friday I will reveal my new business name and a little preview of my logo. I am SO excited, however, as I prepare to officially close Believe Notes and open my new business, I've been dealing with a heck of a lot more fear than I ever imagined. I've come to realize that I am a perfectionist, and the moment I started to think that things wouldn't be perfect, I panicked.

And aside from being a perfectionist, I am also insanely sentimental and I don't think I deal well with change. Believe Notes has been an amazing adventure, and such a huge part of who I am. Letting go is turning out to be heartbreaking, in the it-wasn't-you-it's-me way, and the we're-better-off-apart way. It's crazy to think that this little business, that I started as a hobby so many years ago, has taken me to this point in my life. I'm filled with gratitude, great fortune, and a ton of amazing friends and peers - all thanks to Believe Notes.

So while I say I'm having a hard time with the announcement on Friday because of my perfectionistic tendencies, rest assure that it's a bit of a cover up. 

I realized that things don't need to be perfect, they just need to be right. And trust me when I say that everything is finally starting to feel right. Believe Notes has showed me the value of dealing with my fears head-on and using them to grow and learn, which always ends up feeling so amazing (scary, but amazing). My new business name is right, my new logo is right, my new attitude and business purpose - it's all right, and I am so excited to be moving in this direction.

And you know what, being scared is right. It's normal, it's OK, and I'm allowing myself to embrace these moments of fear, because they fuel me to continue to do the right thing.

So, everybody, please join me in saying goodbye to Believe Notes, my beloved business that has taken me on a journey I could have never imagined taking. I'd love it if you could all leave comments about how you met me/heard about Believe Notes, why you've followed me along the way, and what your most looking forward to for the new business.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Don't Allow Fear to Stop Your Business From Growing!

This is a so-real-I'm-shaking-as-I-write-it post. Lately I've felt a little like I've been dealing with a severe case of writers, designers, and an overall creative block. At one point last week, I felt panic creeping up through my stomach, and I knew, in that moment, I needed to get to the bottom of the craziness. So I've been spending a lot of time thinking about what happened to make me all of a sudden feel this way, and I realized what it is.

My business is growing and I am terrified. Absolutely, dibilitatingly terrified.

There are so many things I know that I need to do to continue to let my business grow, and I was SO certain about these things until a few people planted a few seeds of doubt in my mind. And then those seeds began to grow, and then before I knew it, I had allowed a garden of fear grow. Instead of spending my days just doing the things I knew I needed to do, I found myself thinking about them, analyzing them, and then thinking of a million reasons NOT to do them.

For example, hiring an intern. I need an intern, I need somebody to help me prep files, place orders, research new products, and manage some of my vendor contact relationships. Having an intern would free me up to spend quality time on my new business and working one-on-one with my clients in a more timely fashion. I need an intern.

But when I told a few acquaintances about my need for an intern, they kind of looked at me sideways. One person even said that I shouldn't bring on an intern because I work full time, and do I really want to have an intern spending more time on my business during the day than I do? My gut was screaming "yes! Yes that's exactly what I want! I need somebody to help me when I'm not around", but the way this person was making it sound, I began to feel ashamed for wanting that, and like I would be losing the quality of my business. She asked, "What if they screw things up, and you wouldn't even know until you're home from work?", insinuating that I would then be spending more time fixing the mistake than getting any work done.

That was the bad, bad seed. Which grew, and blossomed, and began spreading like a weed through all of my other business ideas.

What if I hire a lawyer to do my trademarking and then the trademark got rejected?

What if I hire somebody to do my website and it doesn't look perfect?

What if I invest in my new business, and then NOTHING comes of it?

What if I invest in my business, and then something DOES come of it, and I can't keep up with it, and have to turn people down, thus halting my growth all together?


You see, that seed is a damn weed.

But I am no longer watering it.

If I can't launch my business this month, as planned, that's OK - it will launch as soon as it's perfect. I'm going to hire an intern. I'm going to continue to invest in my business, and it will continue to grow. I am going to launch an amazing, successful, luxury wedding invitation line. I am going to succeed.

And I am going to do it all by just taking each and every small step, and just doing it.

I'm going to do it. Say that with me: I am going to do it. I am, I am, I am.

Alright, excuse me while I go and put up a listing for an intern...

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...