Today we’d like to introduce you to Annie Rusche.
Hi Annie, so excited to have you on the platform. So, before we get into questions about your work-life, maybe you can bring our readers up to speed on your story and how you got to where you are today?
My story is still being written, but it all started with a quote! My mom pointed out this quote for me a few years ago – “You must do the things you think you cannot do” – Eleanor Roosevelt. I started my career in marketing, eventually leading to me owning my own marketing business. After helping numerous small businesses understand how to market themselves, I realized I wanted to use my marketing skills to fulfill my lifelong passion for designing and selling stationery, paper goods, art, and sweet gifts. It was something I thought I could not do, and seeing that quote on my studio’s desk every day made me realize I could do it. I combined my love for southern hospitality and little things that spark joy in everyday life and Southbound Joy Paper and Gifts was born. I’ve always found joy in writing letters and handwritten notes, and now I get to share that joy with the world.
I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle-free, but so far would you say the journey has been a fairly smooth road?
For a few years, I had been dabbling in stationery and paper design, originally thinking I would design paper for weddings. I even developed a collection with ten wedding suite designs! I never put myself out there, except for doing some small things for family and close friends. I realized I didn’t want to be in the wedding space. It took a couple more years to find my creative style and to put it into products. As a mom of three (my daughter and boy-girl twin infants! It was hard to find time, but I found so much joy in spending just 30 minutes a day bringing Southbound Joy Paper and Gifts to life. Time and juggling motherhood was my biggest struggles, but also my biggest blessings. The more time I spent with my littles, the more I began to think of sweet things to design that incorporated things I’d want to gift them. Being a mom inspires a lot of what I do.
Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
I specialize in paper goods and gifts. When someone sees a product created by me and sold in my shop, I hope they think “Oh how sweet!”. Patterns, soft and fun colors, and gifts for special events and children are my favorite. This past Easter, my Bunny Bait product got attention from local moms and they turned out adorable. I’m most proud of my conversation starter placemats that make dinner and playtime educational and more fun, my party pack (coming soon!), and my sweet Mom Of notepads. A lot of people are designing in the stationery and paper goods and gifts space, but what sets me apart is that everything in my shop is made with love and grace and southern hospitality in mind. Each product in my shop is meant to spark joy. They are meant to make holidays extra special, notes more memorable, and life a bit more joyful.
Do you have any advice for those just starting out?
Don’t wait for perfection. Just start sharing and creating. The people who love you will support you. Something I wish I knew starting out? It’s not as scary as you think to put your creations out into the world! Have confidence. If you love what you do, people will sense that and want to be part of your journey.
- My prices range from $5-$200 depending on if it’s a single product or a bundle.
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: www.southboundjoypaper.com
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/southboundjoy/
Ally and Bobby