From An Idea to Reality
The Story of Slap! Stickers
The idea for Slap! Stickers began in 2013 while I was working for Focus Lab. At the time the company was looking for ways to create passive income by using the passions of its employees. During that time of growth and expansion, a book was written, an icon set were created and an idea for a sticker shop was born.
Originally, Slap! Stickers was going to be an online store where I could post stickers and sticker packs for people to purchase. The flag ship of this concept was a “Designer” sticker series, where I created a bunch of caricatures of some of our favorite designers. A few of those designers would even later be added to the Family Roster, get back to that later.
Toward the end of 2013 we had 15 designers signed up to be in the series and allow us to use their likenesses. A lot of people within the Dribbble community were really excited about the project and it gained quite a bit of traction. It got to the point where there were designers emailing me asking if they could be a part of the project.
In early 2014, we had everything ready for the initial launch of Slap! Stickers 1.0. We had 15 stickers created, the packaging was designed and all the logistics had been figured out. Unfortunately though the project had to be tabled due to Focus Lab expanding and growing. We had so much work coming in that the passive income projects were put on hold until further notice so that we could focus on all the amazing projects that were coming into the work funnel.
At Creative South 2014, so many people came up to me and told me how excited they were about the project. It seemed like everyone I talked to were like “How’s Slap!?” “Whats going on with the designer stickers?” It was super encouraging! Hearing all these awesome people who I look up to saying they’re excited about my project, inspired me and made me want to pick it back up.
Sadly a few months later I left Focus Lab for greener pastures. Bill Kenney and Erik Reagan knew how much work I had put into Slap! Stickers and allowed me to take it with me. At the time I left Focus, I no longer knew what would happen with Slap! Stickers. I was on the hunt for the next big adventure in my life and unfortunately I didn’t know if Slap! would be apart of that.
By the time of Creative South 2015, I was now living and working in San Diego, CA at Digital Telepathy. After leaving Focus Lab, I began using the original Slap! Stickers mark as my personal logo for freelancing and had a bunch of stickers printed up. When I arrived at the conference my bag was filled with 200 awesome Slap! print stickers begging to be given out to people.
The stickers were an instant hit! People who remembered the stickers from Slap! Stickers were ecstatic asking “Is the Designer Stickers coming?” and each time I would tell them maybe, but only half heartedly. The day before the actual start of the conference I set out over 50 stickers on a “swag” table so people could just grab ‘em up. I got up extra early and made my way to the Opera house the conference was being held at. When I got there I couldn’t find my stickers anywhere. I got a little ticked because I thought they had been moved. I learned from one of the volunteers that when they opened the doors that morning the stickers had been snatched up within the first few minutes! People were super excited by these stickers, which was amazing!I couldn’t believe the momentum these stickers had and a spark began to grow in my mind.
I was extremely sad to leave Creative South ’15 and all my amazing friends that I’ve known for years now and those I had just met. Everyone I met and interacted with inspired me so much and left an imprint on me. While on my flight home I began working on an “Idea List” and just started naming out things that came to mind. Something that kept coming up was Slap! Stickers. I kept thinking “How could I reimagine Slap! Stickers?” Then I began thinking about one of my friends, Bob Ewing (Family Roster Member), and his new project that he co-founded, Inch X Inch. He had created with one of his friends a pin subscription service. That stemmed the question “What about stickers?” From there the rest was history!
From that point on it was like everything was moving at light speed! I decided to completely overhaul the idea of Slap! Stickers and make it more about this amazing community of artists and designers who have inspired me and continue to inspire me and motivate me. Instead of me creating stickers and selling them I wanted to get some of my friends involved with it so that they got their names and work out there to an even larger audience then before. Within a month of reimagining Slap! we had 30 people signed up for our “Family Roster”(named because we are one big family of talented individuals).
Our Family Roster Includes:
“We want to create some Awesome Stickers” — Nick Slater
It took over three months of a lot of hard work to get Slap! Stickers ready for our first big milestone, our Kickstarter. I was lucky enough to have some amazing people help me along the way. Nick Slater, my friend and brother, helped me out big time with our “Slap!” lettering. My friend and co-worker, Jamie Hamel-Smith, donated his valuable time as our videographer and editor. The wizard of a developer Mr. Rob Davarnia made some awesome tweaks to the Slap! Stickers website right before we launched. Its crazy that I know so many amazing people who I can safely call my friends and my family.