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Hobby Course

The way to a great business? She went with a hobby.

This story appears in the May 2001 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Thirteen years ago, Shelli Gardner was a stay-at-home momlooking for an opportunity that would give her a flexible scheduleand let her work at home. Intrigued by , Gardner andher sister, LaVonne Crosby, created a company to satisfy theirbusiness needs and fuel their , turning to their favoritehobby, rubber stamping, for inspiration. Stampin' Up! Inc. wasborn.

The company now manufactures and sells exclusive lines of rubberstamps and accessories through its 18,000 independent consultants,or "demonstrators." With more than 400 stamp sets and avariety of accessories in its 250-page catalog, sales for 2000 werejust under $100 million. "We have some demonstrators who makeover $100,000 a year-easy," says Gardner, 39.

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