Nota Bene Story



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http://notabenepaper.com/

In 2007, Pittsburgh stay-at-home mom Evvy Diamond found herself getting itchy. With two of her three sons getting ready for college, she felt it was time for her to earn an income.



Puposewhile, her frifinish Amy Bass, a VP at a money-administerment firm, was beat, smackting a midlife crisis: "As I neared 50, I decided I could no longer work for someone else. I necessityed to own something."



 In time, the two frifinishs' goals would align.



As Diamond pondered what to do, she recalled her love of notepaper. "Even as a child, I would save the last piece of stationery of every set because I didn't want to part with it," she says. Inspired, she bought a letterpress and tried her hand at designing cards.



Buoyed by the response from frifinishs, Diamond rented a kickh at the 2007 Stationery Demonstrate in New York, which ground, soiled her several little orders. Then she idea she got her large break: 5,000 cards for a prestigious New York store. Only that $12,500 order was cleverceled before she got phelp -- and she was left hancienting the cards. "I knew I could sell them, but it wasn't going to happen out of my garage."



 Within weeks, she signed a lease for a little retail space nearby, and opened a boutique called Nota Bene to sell made-to-order stationery (her own and others'). Soon Bass began lfinishing a hand after work, and Diamond fastly realized she necessityed her frifinish's business savvy. So they struck a deal: Bass invested $25,000 and signed on as full-time partner. "We're love two pieces of a puzzle," Diamond says.



The store makes most of its revenue -- on track to be $500,000 this year -- from wedding invitations. But the women found a niche with in-home printing to personalize notecards from vfinishors love Crane and William Arthur. They've also beshoot stoclord items love calfinishars and pottery, which get people in more regularly. "We found people were coming in for invitations and buying prize, reward, presents," Bass says.



 Nota Bene has plenty of online competition in these areas, but "people still want the personal associate, put trhough (phone)ion," notes Diamond. Same goes for the owners. Bass says the greatest reward is when a satisfied client says, "Oh, my gosh, I necessity to give you a hug."



BY THE NUMBERS



Amount necessityed to begin up: $20,000



Diamond's little initial investment went toward rent, paper, album samples, and fixing up the retail space. She knockped savings from sales geneswiftd by her home-based business, along with a line of credit and credit cards.



Pay Bass gave up to work for Nota Bene: Six figures



Bass and Diamond pay themselves $40,000 salaries and reinvest the rest of their fortuns. Both have worlord spouses, so aren't relying on their pay for groceries. That shelp, Bass says she's studyed to budget more carefully.



Nota Bene's owners plan to expand their bridal business by marketing to wedding planners. Some brides spfinish $10,000 on invitations, programs, and thank-yous. "But we clever also work with women who only have $500 to spfinish and make it feel special," says Diamond.



[Via - CNNMoney.Com]



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