Sayings, Sentiments, Success: The Bluegrass Story

March 2008
by Linda Carlson

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Sayings, Sentiments, Success: The Bluegrass Story

by Linda Carlson

You’re one of those publishers who’d like to break into the notoriously competitive gift and specialty retail market? Then read this story sitting down, because your head will probably be spinning by the time you hear how Linda LaTourelle used a self-published book of sentiments to establish a company that today is one of the fastest growing in the $2.6 billion scrapbooking industry. And she did it all in five years.

How did this hairdresser make the giant leap to CEO? It all started with a sister’s suggestion. In the late 1990s, LaTourelle’s younger sister, Lisa, was running a scrapbooking supply store in the Napa Valley, and she said she’d like to sell sheets of sayings and sentiments for crafters. Nothing like that was then available.

It sounded interesting to LaTourelle, who had once made and sold teddy-bear cards at Hawaiian flea markets, but she was busy doing hair in a small Kentucky town and home-schooling her daughters—and she wasn’t a scrapbooker. She did talk the concept over with her customers, however, and they did more than encourage her; one offered to finance the first printing of a book.

Then LaTourelle got serious about what was to be Bluegrass Publishing. She sat d…IBPA Members – Click here to view the full article (login required).

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