Ross Moody wasn’t creatively satisfied with his 9-5 and took a chance: 55 Hi’s. He branched out and flexed his creative muscles to build a witty, typography-based creative company, providing cards, posters, and a lot more.
- Where They Sell
“If you can imagine, we come from manually processing orders through Paypal and entering tracking numbers one at a time through the back end of USPS. So, when we found Shipstation and linked it up to our Shopify platform it was like someone turned the lights on.”Ross Moody Owner & Designer
The variety of 55 Hi’s products is staggering—from cards to posters to money cards—but they all feel related. How do you decide what idea becomes a poster versus a card?
This is actually a fairly constant battle for us right now. Our niche is unique paper products. As long as it’s related to paper and is interesting, funny or witty it’s fair game. That’s where we do our dance but since there isn’t a roadmap for new paper products nobody has heard of, it can make it more difficult coming up with new ideas to make on a consistent basis. Sure, we could just slap funny typographic sayings on posters (which is actually where we got our start) but we’re really trying to make each new release somethign special that you can’t get from Society 6 or Marshall’s. We think that’s where our value comes from and ultimately what will help separate us from other stationery companies.
Breaking away from a full-time job to start your own business is a daunting task. Any advice for those going down that same path?
Well if I can be completely candid I don’t know if I’m experienced enough to answer this question completely yet. I just left my job on August 1 to pursue 55 Hi’s full time. For the previous 5 years I was employing contractors, relatives and friends to keep the manufacturing and fulfillment arms running while I kept my full time job and concentrated on new designs.
I suppose if I am forced to tell my experience thus far, I would say the key to me keeping my sanity is keeping costs low. I don’t have a car and I never take on debt. This helps keep my stress level down and since my only real passion is 55 Hi’s, anything I buy is a business expense anyway. I saved for 5 years to make this leap and I’m hoping for the best moving forward but only time will tell.
Are you still regularly eating pizza? Favorite kind of slice?
I just recently made the move from NYC back to my hometown in Harrisburg, PA so I have been on a tour of Pizza places I grew up loving in the area but haven’t been able to visit in a while. For how much pizza I eat, I hate to say that i’m just a plain cheese kind of guy. Sometimes I’ll mix it up with a Margherita slice but it’s rare.
How has ShipStation helped you with your business?
We hopped on the Shipstation bus (thankfully) very early in 55 Hi’s life. If you can imagine, we come from manually processing orders through Paypal and entering tracking numbers one at a time through the back end of USPS. So, when we found Shipstation and linked it up to our Shopify platform it was like someone turned the lights on.
Thankfully, for the amount of mail we now send, I haven’t had to step foot in a Post Office in years. Nothing is worse than holding up a line while one slow USPS employee individually weighs 30 poster tubes in front of you. You can feel the gaze of hatred from the people behind you.
What’s your favorite ShipStation feature?
Being able to automate and customize shipping notification emails has been unbelievably helpful. We have probably 5 different emails that we use on a daily basis from Generic Shipment Notifications, Wholesale Order Notification, Retail Order Notification, Prospective Store Notifications, and Card Sample Notifications. Being able to customize each one of those with communication appropriate for the person we’re sending it to is an awesome tool.