A stationery business sells stationery products such as paper goods, notebooks, greeting cards, and envelopes.
The best part about starting a stationery business is that it's relatively easy and inexpensive to get started.
Since there are so many different types of products available in this industry, there are endless opportunities for creativity, customization, and expansion.
You could even start out small by selling your products on Etsy or eBay before opening up an actual storefront.
Here are some real life success stories of starting a stationery business:
1. Seniman Calligraphy ($156K/year)
Ruth Daro (from Los Angeles, California, USA) started Seniman Calligraphy almost 8 years ago.
Hi, I’m Ruth and I run Seniman Calligraphy a custom stationery design studio where I do calligraphy, watercolor, illustration, and graphic design for bespoke wedding invitations and other paper goods. Basically, printing and manufacturing.
2. Raghaus ($300K/year)
Markus Hartel (from Newburgh, New York, USA) started Raghaus over 7 years ago.
Hi there! My name is Markus Hartel and I started Raghaus Studios, a boutique letterpress print shop and graphic design studio five years ago after moving to a new domicile with nothing but a dream, no customers, and little cash in my pocket.
The Raghaus product line includes irreverent beverage coasters, fun comment cards, rad stash boxes and the latest addition to my portfolio are motivational candles.
3. Jordyn Alison Designs ($48K/year)
Jordyn (from Michigan, USA) started Jordyn Alison Designs over 4 years ago.
Hey, I’m Jordyn and I’m the owner of Jordyn Alison Designs. My intentions with my products are to bring joy to your daily life as well as help connect you with others.
As of February 2020, I’m currently averaging $3,000 a month. I know this number could (and will) be better but for now, I’m really content with this!
4. Sheedo Paper ($480K/year)
Gonzalo Mestre (from Madrid, Community of Madrid, Spain) started Sheedo Paper almost 5 years ago.
My name is Gonzalo and with my partner Gala, we run a business called Sheedo.
We started this project around 2 years ago, the first moments were taught, but nowadays we are growing and setting about 40K€ per month and have worked for big brands such as Coca-cola, Inditex, Sony, Deloitte or Air France.
5. Ferrotype Ltd ($180K/year)
Dominic Irons (from London, England, United Kingdom) started Ferrotype Ltd over 3 years ago.
I’m Dominic Irons and I jointly run Ferrotype with my sister Jo. We provide branded stationery to corporate clients - that’s notebooks, diaries, pens and pencils. The core of the business is branded notebooks though. Our focus is on premium stationery, and many people are familiar with the Moleskine brand which is the market leader in this field. However there are a lot of alternatives to Moleskine out there, and part of our aim is to be constantly seeking and showcasing new stationery. For us, we need to be seen to be innovative and exciting, and this is something we are working hard at.
We are posting a profit for our first year and we have a great base to build for the future. Our revenue is quite modest for the first year, at around $150,000, but for us, that is a solid base on which to build. This is also partly due to us working on a commission basis on many sales, so we don’t get the full sales revenue, but then we don’t have the problems associated with managing debtors.
6. Cinquanta Cox-Smith ($120K/year)
Cinquanta Cox-Smith (from Killeen, TX, USA) started *Cinquanta Cox-Smith * about 13 years ago.
Hey, y’all I’m Cinquanta Cox-Smith I hate putting myself in a box, but If I had to explain what I do: I’m a Multipreneur. (Author, Podcaster, and Entrepreneur) I’ve been helping entrepreneurs start an EASY Print On Demand side hustle from anywhere for about 3 years now. I’m originally from a small town in South Carolina called Georgetown. It’s historic in many ways, especially for the Geechee Gullah culture. I’m an Army Veteran and my Husband (Shawn) is an active-duty soldier. We have 2 kids Kyree (15) and Sharye (12). Let’s not forget about our dog ChuChu. He's most definitely the star of this show.
I’ve always felt like this was just a hobby, or I was just making shirts but Print On Demand is so much more than that. It’s helped me create $7,000 in one month selling POD journals on Amazon KDP, it’s helped me land a Magazine Cover with my T-Shirts for Stars & Stripes (American Military Newspaper). It’s helped me teach over 10,000 people how to create passive & residual income from home with just a computer and some wi-fi. Most importantly it’s allowed me the gift of TIME. Time to spend and travel with my family. Once we get further along into this interview. I’ll tell you about how I accidentally started in the Print On Demand industry 12 years ago.
7. Bookblock ($3.12M/year)
Tom Strickland (from London, England, United Kingdom) started Bookblock about 8 years ago.
Hi, I’m Tom Strickland and I co-founded Bookblock. We’re a gifting business and manufacturers, creating anything from candles to chocolate to stationery, along with personalised cards and children’s books, which we sell through our gifting platform online.
We currently have an annual turnover of £2m, and this is predominantly down to our corporate manufacturing arm rather than the new consumer arm which is about to take off.
8. Chirps & Cricket Design Studio ($13.2K/year)
Abigail Butler (from Denver, Colorado, USA) started Chirps & Cricket Design Studio over 7 years ago.
Hi there! My name is Abigail Butler and I am the designer, maker and owner of Chirps & Cricket Design Studio. Chirps & Cricket is a small, Denver, Colorado-based design studio specializing in graphic design services, custom illustration, handcrafted paper goods and bespoke invitations.
Illustration, design and packaging for The Patient Zeros ‘Born Again’ EP. The band requested a hand-drawn illustration with a psychedelic feel.
9. Planner Peace ($270K/year)
Jess Yasuda (from Hobart, Tasmania, Australia) started Planner Peace about 7 years ago.
Hi, I’m Jess. I’m 34 years old from Tasmania, Australia. I started Chasing Planner Peace back in 2015 when I was pregnant with my third child. Originally we were based on Etsy and only sold planner inserts, however, we’ve now turned into a one-stop planner shop that caters to seasoned “planner addicts” who want to add to their planners, and also planner newbies who love the fact our shop is the only store in Australia you can custom build your own ring planner style planner.
Over the past few years, we’ve really expanded our range to not only offer planners and inserts, but also planner dashboards (beautiful cover pages), dividers, notepads, stationery items and more. We also recently started our subscription box service where every two months customers can receive a “Planner Peace Box” which is full of planner and self-care goodies. We have so many more plans for new products in 2020.
10. The Food Diary ($9K/year)
Laura Mulkerne (from Yorkshire, Virginia, USA) started The Food Diary almost 5 years ago.
Hi, I’m Laura, and I’m the founder of The Food Diary Co. We currently sell one key product: a food diary for people who want to track their food, symptoms, and wellness. Our diary was originally created for people with digestive and/or chronic illnesses such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome, IBD, Coeliac and more, to better understand their trigger foods and digestive upsets, but it can help anyone better understand the effects of their diet on their overall health.
We’re based and ship from the UK, but we sell our diaries worldwide. In fact, the USA, Canada and Australia are our biggest markets after the UK. The greatest thing about selling this product is connecting with the people who buy it: we share stories of diary users on our blog and social media regularly, and hearing how this diary is helping people all over the world absolutely makes my day.
11. Penny Portrait ($15K/year)
Maury McCoy (from Austin, Texas, USA) started Penny Portrait over 14 years ago.
My name is Maury McCoy, I’m the creator of the Penny Portrait Kit. This kit allows anyone to create a crazy cool portrait of Abe Lincoln out of pennies. It’s a fun experience and the final work of art is stunning conversation starter you can hang on your wall. You can be guaranteed it will be worth at least $8.46. (It takes 846 pennies...)
We include a booklet with info about coin collecting, Lincoln history, chemistry experiments you can do with pennies and even include a collectible 1943 steel penny with each kit.
12. Seph Crafts ($2.4K/year)
Sephora Thelismon (from Cameron, NC, USA) started Seph Crafts about 2 years ago.
My name is Sephora. I am the owner of Seph Crafts. I started my company as a hobby about two years ago and have since transitioned to a full-time business owner during the pandemic.
Initially, it was easy for me to focus only on the bottom line. But the reviews from my clients were priceless and rewarding. I focus more on the quality and client experience. My passion and thoughtfulness show in every planner created. So, for me, it feels good knowing that Seph Crafts planners are great for increasing productivity in someone's everyday life.
13. Fernaco ($120K/year)
Ricardo Fernandez (from Los Angeles, California, USA) started Fernaco over 4 years ago.
Hi everyone, my name is Ricardo Fernandez and I am the founder of Fernaco, an Amazon FBA private-label brand that focuses on selling top-quality office accessories.
Our top customers are large businesses, who often purchase bulk orders of 40+ holders at a time. We also have several recurring customers who love the product so much they come back to buy the product as new colors are introduced. Since the company’s inception in 2017, we have grown our revenue to consistently bring in between 9 to 11 thousand dollars per month. We are reinvesting all profits back into the business and plan on expanding into other office-supply categories within the next year.
14. The Goulet Pen Company ($12M/year)
Brian Goulet (from Henrico, VA, USA) started The Goulet Pen Company over 13 years ago.
- Brian Goulet is the Founder of Goulet Pens, an online retail niche store that focuses on fountain pens, ink, and paper for writing.
- This is a guy who sells pens and geeks out on paper online in a way that you didn’t even know existed. He’s building a real business with it, a business full of passionate customers who love what he’s doing, a business full of customers who are buying what he’s selling.
15. StickerJunkie ($1M/year)
Andrea Lake (from Santee, CA, USA) started StickerJunkie over 13 years ago.
- Andrea Lake is the founder of StickerJunkie.com
- Sticker Junkie lets you design your own stickers and you can get it printed on a number of materials and in various sizes.
- Andrea currently makes more $1M/year selling stickers online
Read the full story on mixergy.com.
16. Paper Saver ($72K/year)
Michelle Lee (from Melbourne VIC, Australia) started Paper Saver over 7 years ago.
The Paper Saver started in Melbourne, Australia, in 2015 with the simple goal to reduce paper waste. Designed by my co-founder and partner Jon Yong, he and I are now also parents with the desire for our two young children to grow up in a sustainable world. Driven by this, the Paper Saver aims to promote environmental awareness and sustainable living.
Since launching in 2015, we have grown YOY on an average of 20%, and are now on a mission to spread the word further with a project on Kickstarter, aimed at creating awareness that anyone from kids to adults can reduce waste and live more sustainably with the Sparkle Paper Saver.
Hey! 👋I'm Pat Walls, the founder of Starter Story.
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