Archive for the ‘business’ Category

February Month Rewind!

February is finally over and we couldn’t be happier! If you’re in Chicago (or at least understand its’ weather), you’ll know it’s been a rough one. In general, things have been pretty quiet but that doesn’t mean we’ve slowed down! For now, enjoy our February Month Rewind:

Kick Off To Hiring:
Phew, this has been a long time coming! The start of the hiring process (and the entire process in general) requires a lot of effort and moving parts. From deciding the specific job needs, to creating and posting a job listing, to actually interviewing, it just take a lot. However, we are actually happy that business is doing so well that we NEED extra help! Stay tuned for the outcome of our employee hunt and hopefully we’ll have an extra addition to the SPP family next month ūüôā

Feb 2019 NYNow Buying Trip:
If you follow SPP at all, you’ll know we kicked off NYNow Aug 2018 by showing our wholesale line for the first time in years. However, our owner Shayna also travels to additional NYNow shows for the sole intention of buying cool products from other vendors to carry in our retail store. This is a very tedious, but necessary, task since there is SO MUCH to see at these shows and VERY LITTLE time to do it! But, it’s the best way to keep up with new and fresh items which is very important for our brick & mortar business.

Valentine’s Day:
Being a stationery and gift company, Valentine’s Day can be a very busy time in terms of sales. In the 1 or 2 months leading up to V-Day, our wholesale accounts are placing orders to get those love-themed items shipped and received in time to be purchased! For our brick and mortar, the week to couple days before the holiday are our busiest! (Nothing like last minute shopping, eh?!) Either way, we love being a place that people turn to for the perfect way to say they care!

Spring Display Window:
We love ushering in the new Spring season with a new window display at our brick and mortar location! It’s truly special how much freedom we have to have to get creative with the displays and we do our best to take full advantage of that ūüôā This year we found ourselves inspired by crystals and their formations in nature. We honestly couldn’t be happier with how it turned out, in fact, it might be our favorite window to date:

The Path To A New Release Begins:
As we’ve made mention in previous blog posts, Steel Petal Press really wants to share a more in depth look at how we create new releases for our brand. BUT, to touch on it briefly as we look back this month, the creative portion of this process began as we started to share some preliminary ideas for new cards and gifts. We are looking forward to sharing more details on this but for now enjoy some photo evidence of what this looks like for us:


(Left to Right) Shayna, Dan, Matt looking at potential card ideas!

Thanks for reading through our February Month Rewind. We can’t wait to share all the exciting things that unfolding for Steel Petal Press in 2019! Until next time, buh bye!

Be sure to follow us on Instagram for more behind the scenes!!

How Does It Get Made?: The SPP Edition.

How does it get made? Is this a question we ask too much?…or not enough?

When we live in such a consumer-driven culture, it can be easy to forget the journey an item makes before we purchase it. For us here at SPP, it’s more than just making a commodity. It’s about creating high quality, handmade items that connect all of us through fun and meaningful life moments. With that in mind, we want to begin a series of blog posts that detail specific portions of the design process for our upcoming release – from start to finish! However, we thought to give it a bit more context that we should layout a brief overview of the entire process derived from our last release which just happened in January (Spring)!¬† Without further ado, enjoy How does It Get Made?: The SPP Edition.

The “Thinking” Process:
While this isn’t an official title or anything, it’s a great umbrella concept for the creative thoughts process that must happen first. Essentially, we can’t produce new items if we don’t know what ideas we want to create! As I mentioned above, we just did a Spring Release this January but its development began way back in August of last year (2018)! The entire staff joins in on the brainstorming process which means we are constantly jotting down and joking around with ideas. From that pool of ideas, Shayna starts designing rough sketches which can take anywhere from 4-6 weeks.

As the sketching process continues, Shayna will present them to the entire staff during weekly meetings in which positive and negative feedback is given and adjustments are made to create final designs or table  unfinished ideas (possibly for another release).

The “Printing” Process:
Next up, printing! Since we create cards using the letterpress process, we must order the plates which “stamp” (or press) our design onto paper. Therefore, absolutely no printing can occur until we receive them. The plates usually come in 1-2 weeks and then we print all the new card designs for another 2-3 weeks.

However here at SPP, we don’t just design cards! We also design gift items like magnets, mugs, gift bags, and gift wrap which can’t be made using letterpress so we outsource them during this time to other printing services in the US.

The “Marketing to Sales” Process:
This final portion of the journey encompasses all aspects that have to do with marketing and getting our products to sale through either wholesale or retail. When we finish printing, the new samples are shipped out to be photographed which takes about another 1-2 weeks. These photographs are important because they can used for a variety of marketing purposes like Instagram, Facebook, newsletters, etc.

During this time, Shayna will also update our wholesale catalog while our wholesale manager, Rachel, works on updating our various selling websites. Rachel will also work on sending out the new samples to our sales rep groups across the country to ensure they have our entire current line available for accounts. Last on the wholesale front, we will send out catalogs and marketing fliers to all 300+ current retailers to let them know about our new release!

Once all of that is complete, we can begin selling our new items to the public through various retail channels such as our brick and mortar store and our website!

The finish of a release also sets us up to show at wholesale markets like AmericasMart and NYNow because we have new products to debut to current and potential accounts!

Whew – what a process, huh?! While it’s no small feat, it’s a large part of what we are constantly doing here at Steel Petal Press. We look forward to continuing this blog post series in real time alongside our next release. Until then, we hope you enjoyed¬†How Does It Get Made?: The SPP Edition.

Be sure to stop by our brick & mortar store (and shop our Steel Petal Press products online) to browse all of our awesome products AND MORE!

And be sure to follow us on Instagram for more behind the scenes!

Extended Holiday Hours at Steel Petal Press

extended holiday gift shopping hours We are quickly popping in to share our holiday hours for Steel Petal Press Brick and Mortar Retail Shop.

We know, preparing for family, shopping, cooking and Christmas break can get hectic: and we at Steel Petal Press is here to help!! The shop is staying open until 8pm the week before Christmas, giving you a little extra time to check off everything on your list.

Make note of our holiday hours are listed below:

Holiday HOURS:
Monday, December 17th – Friday December 21st: 11am – 8pm
Saturday, December 22nd: 10am – 8pm
Sunday, December 23rd: 11am – 8pm
Monday, December 24th: 11am – 3pm
Tuesday, December 25th: CLOSED
Monday, December 31st – Friday, December 4th: CLOSED

Steel Petal Press Chicago Stationery shop Steel Petal Press Gift Chicago Steel Petal Press Chicago Gift Shop

Join Our TEAM!

Steel Petal Press is hiring and we’re looking for you!
Read more about our company here: http://www.steelpetalpress.com/

We are a small boutique stationery company specializing in handmade letterpress greeting cards. Our flagship location is located in Logan Square (just off the California Blue line stop.) We are looking for a permanent full-time retail and shipping assistant (approximately 30-40 hours/week). Weekend availability is a MUST. This is strictly retail customer service and shipping position, with light merchandising duties.

The expected schedule for this position will be 8 hour shifts with dedicated time for shipping and dedicated time for retail tasks.

We are looking for an exuberant people person who can multi-task with ease. We want someone who has excellent shipping experience and loves working with people to fit in with our small team.

The ideal candidate(s) would possess the following skills & attributes:
– Has at least 2 years shipping experience, packaging orders, and familiarity with USPS, FedEx, and UPS shipments
– Has at least 2 years of excellence retail and sales experience- in a boutique setting is ideal
– Inventory Management experience
– Outstanding communication skills
– Self-motivated and proactive
– Has a fun, upbeat personality, and positive attitude
– Eagerness to learn, very reliable and hardworking
– Strong attention to details and multi-tasking skills
– Ability to work well independently and as part of a team
– MUST be available work weekends
– Availability for the 30-40 hour per week schedule we desire

Retail Tasks include:
– Lively customer interactions and excellent, not-too-salesy, but personal customer service!
– Energetic and friendly cashiering
– Retail store maintenance
– Opening and closing procedures
– Helping with misc. tasks, including some merchandising and post production of greeting cards as needed

Shipping Tasks include:
– Packaging and shipping orders
– Managing payments and outgoing orders from our 5 sales channels
– Shipping customer service
– Ordering shipping supplies
– Helping to manage and maintain inventory levels

Bonus (but not required) if you have any of the following: merchandising, graphic design skills, or tradeshow experience.

To apply, please follow these steps. If steps are not followed as listed, your application will NOT be accepted:
– Research our company and showcase that you understand a bit about our company.
РEmail your COVER LETTER explaining why you feel you would be a great fit for this position and our company (Tips on writing a great cover letter: http://theeverygirl.com/7-tips-to-write-the-perfect-cover-letter).
– Email your RESUME or work history.

If it seems that initially you may be a fit for our company, we will first conduct short online survey interviews. If it seems like a good fit, some candidates may then be called for in person or Skype interviews.

Mother’s Day is Sunday May 13th!

mother's day gifts steel petal press

Listen, we’re not trying to nag you but Mother’s Day is a little over a week away:  SUNDAY May 13th which means you’re running out of time to pick the perfect card to celebrate your mom!

Steel Petal Press has got a variety of Mother’s Day cards which range from funny to sentimental so you can pick just the right one to show your mom you care!

Visit us as Steel Petal Press
2321 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago 60647

cards for mom and dad

But, let’s be honest, after all the shit you probably put her through it might be nice to get her a little something else. No worries, we’ve got plenty of perfect little something else’s that Mom’s are bound to love!

Maybe a mug to put all her coffee in (which she needs now thanks to you)? Or even a magnet to hang up your old artwork she still keeps on the fridge?

mother's day gifts steel petal press

Regardless, she‚Äôs bound to love whatever you pick out for her…so just make sure to pick her out something before Sunday!¬† After all, she did go through hours of labor to birth you, so why wait ‚Äėtil the last minute!

mother's day cards

Steel Petal Press at the Spring One of a Kind Show

one of a kind show chicago

We’re so excited to be participating in the One of a Kind Spring Show this Friday – Sunday! We’ll be on the 7th floor of The Merchandise Mart In BOOTH 1035!

We’ll be there with a brand new release of SO MANY NEW NEW NEW cards and products. We’re excited to share them all with you!

ALSO – Mother’s Day is just a few weeks away (Sunday May 13th) so don’t forget to pick up a card for mom while you shop.

Of if you can’t make the show, you can always pick up a Mother’s Day card through our online shop
We can’t wait to see you guys there!

Small Biz Saturday / Cyber Monday!

 

shelby

We have some sales coming up in our retail shop and online!  Be sure to sign up for our newsletter ASAP for details on both these once a year sales in store and online.

 

Brick & Mortar Item | Sarcastic Coloring Book

Sarcastic Coloring Books at Steel Petal Press

At Steel Petal Press one of our Core Values is LAUGHTER.  We believe Laughter and beauty bring joy to the world

We love it when customers come in and we here giggles, cackles and sometimes snorts as they peruse our selection of greeting cards and gift items. ¬†One of our most popular items are these sarcastic coloring book. ¬†They are funny and also serve the purpose of helping people relax. ¬†Kill two self-care birds with one stone ūüôā

Sarcastic Coloring Books at Steel Petal Press Sarcastic Coloring Books at Steel Petal Press Sarcastic Coloring Book at Steel Petal Press

Please come in and check out our selection in person at 2321 North Milwaukee Avenue, Chicago IL 60647. If you love us, please leave a review on YELP!

Interview on Proof to Product!

Proof to Product Podcast, Shayna Norwood

Hey Everyone!! I wanted to announce the release of my podcast for the Proof to Product Podcast by my stationery friend and colleague Katie Hunt of Tradeshow Bootcamp.

I took the Tradeshow Bootcamp webinars in 2012 before I exhibited for the first time at The National Stationery Show.  Since then I have been an active member of the TSBC online community of stationery designers and printers, such an inspiring group of entrepreneurs and creative minds.  More recently I attended PaperCamp+ for alumni in more advanced stages of their business.

I was thrilled and honored to be interviewed for this podcast and give back to a community from which¬†I’ve learned so much. ¬†In my interview I talk about how I started Steel Petal Press, opening the flagship retail shop,¬†managing both a wholesale business and a retail storefront, the challenges¬†I’ve¬†faced while growing the business and advice to designers who are pitching their products to wholesale buyers.

I had so much fun talking with Katie and sharing some of the things I’ve learned along¬†my journey. ¬†You can listen to the full episode HERE. ¬†Please check it out, I would love to hear what you think! Was there any new information you found helpful? ¬†Anything I didn’t address, I would love to comment more here.

Thanks so much to Katie and everyone in TSBC for creating such a wonderful and supportive community!

 

 

Letterpress Internship Chicago

Chicago Letterpress Internship

Letterpress Internship Chicago
Starting in January Steel Petal Press is looking for another letterpress intern.  Details on the position and how to apply are listed below.

Commitment:
1-2 days a week, 12 week minimum

Must be:
Hard-working and very reliable, clean, with meticulous attention to detail and ability to work on repetitive tasks.
Letterpress experience, printing or other detail oriented and meticulous hands on experience very beneficial (but not required).

Tasks include:
Packaging and folding inventory, labeling, trimming paper and other production work. You will also learn some presswork including,press maintenance, ink mixing and custom pantone color matching, registration, press set up and production.

This internship is unpaid but I will train you on the press or trade for press time (if you have the right experience) This can be a great opportunity for someone willing to work hard and learn.

Please email me with a RESUME and COVER LETTER.
shayna (at) steelpetalpress (dot) com / subject line ‚ÄúSpring Letterpress Intern‚ÄĚ

and feel free to pass on to interested parties.

Thanks! shayna