Sometime in summer of 2008, my company, Technotic Media, had decided to purchase a cheap, ebay vinyl plotter to support making its own promotional and marketing stickers. At the time, we were content with making some basic logos and learning how to use the plotter. As time went on, several friends and myself started making internet-related, funny stickers for us to put on our cars, motorcycles, computers, or whatever we felt like putting them on.
Fast forward to early 2009, I had the hair-brained idea to sell some of our designs & ideas in sticker-form on the internet. As with any hair-brained business idea that I come up with, the first step was to come up with a name. At this very moment, ihatestickers was born.
We saw incredible growth in the first few years, and several other companies around the globe were started up in our image. We grew from a company with no employees up to over 9 employees in just 2 years. For a company who’s major focus was stickers, we were very grateful for our customers and support from friends & family. We built an empire around stickers with over 1000 different products totaling over 1 million possible color & size combinations. Friends came and went, and despite employees changing over the years, we had a great team and loved to work together.
Not everything came without its problems, however. We struggled to keep up with the amount of orders that came in, and I, personally, struggled with trying to maintain friendships, while also acting as an employer, a mistake I try not to make anymore. Heads butted at times, but in the end, we prevailed and we were a force to be reckoned with.
Our local customers were some of the best supporters of ours, and before long we had put together a great cruise to Carlisle Sport Compact called the Tour de Carlisle. We had so much fun travelling down to the show where we had a booth to sell and give away our stickers and products. We made quite the impression on Carlisle, both the show and the town.
In August of 2012, we put on a one-of-a-kind fashion show. One where the outfits were made completely out of stickers from our catalog. We still hear people talking about this show to this day, as well as we all reminisce about the great time we had at this party. We collected a bunch of our friends and their friends who were willing to show off these outfits we created from stickers. We held the party at Pearl Night club in downtown Rochester where we crowned a Miss IHateStickers. It was an amazing time, and would be talked about for years to come!
Eventually, my other company, Allstar Tactical, started to get busy and I passed the managerial reigns to my wife, Erica. I helped with creating new designs and maintaining the website. I also helped her launch the business-to-business side of the company, namely Stick No Evil. We needed a brand that was able to cater to the various corporate customers without exposing them to the possibly insensitive product designs on ihatestickers. Thus a new brand, Stick No Evil, was born.
Utilizing many of the contacts that I had made over the years in the firearms industry, we were able to build up a steady business supporting our friends in the firearms industry with their sticker and vinyl graphic needs. As Stick No Evil started to grow, we devoted less time to ihatestickers and put our focus into Stick No Evil.
Fast forward to early 2016, we had just opened up a fresh new retail store, The Bunker @ Allstar Tactical, moved Stick No Evil to our basement, and continued to take care of business orders for Stick No Evil. It was Erica’s primary focus for employment and it was her sole responsibility, save for my assistance with graphic design and marketing. At this point, Erica had been teaching ballet for a few years and wanted to transition to full-time teaching. We talked about her pursuing ballet as her full-time career, and she quickly lit up like Times Square at night. I was happy to help her fill her dreams of becoming a full-time dancer and dance teacher.
We decided, together, that it was time to put up ihatestickers and Stick No Evil for sale. Why did we put it up for sale? There was no greed in that. We could have just as easily parted out the equipment and sold everything separately and just dissolved the brands. For us, ihatestickers & Stick No Evil were such a big part of our lives that we wanted to see it live on for someone else. We knew its potential and we knew it was a one-of-a-kind brand.
In October, 2017, after months of negotiations, we can officially announce that ihatestickers and Stick No Evil have moved on to another owner. We are happy to see it move onto another entrepreneur & motorsports enthusiast, and we’ll continue to support his efforts in reviving ihatestickers as well as servicing all of the Stick No Evil customers with the same quality and service they have come to expect from the brand.
It is a very much emotional transition for us, but both Erica and I are excited to see what the next chapter in our lives brings for us. Erica, now a ballet and dance instructor for several different studios in the Rochester, NY area, and myself, focusing on the growth and product development for Allstar Tactical. For those of you, reading this, we thank you for your support and love over these years. We can’t wait to share what’s next with you!