Merry everything and a Happy always!

Baby, it’s cold outside! So to avoid all that, we’ve been very busy INSIDE working away for the final stretch of 2018. Calendars and holiday gifts are running rampant through our factory! It can’t be all work and no play, though. As you may have noticed, our JournalBooks team loves a good holiday celebration and Christmastime is no exception. Check out what we’ve been up to below!

Bells are ringin’ and angels are singin’ this holiday season! This year, we decided to participate in the Salvation Army Angel Tree Program, where we adopted Angels (kids) and Silver Bells (senior citizens) in need to give them a Merry Christmas. Our staff went all out with bicycles, toys, and warm clothes galore!

Speaking of helping those in need, our Second Harvest Food and Fundraiser went off without a hitch. Thanks again to our wonderful staff, we were able to provide several barrels of food, as well as over 500 pounds of food worth of donated money to our hungry neighbors.

We are so fortunate to be able to participate in these types of programs and help those in need. It is the reason for the season, after all.

As much as we’ve enjoyed helping others, we also like presents…and food. Who doesn’t, right? The holidays are the perfect time to celebrate with both and enjoy the fruits of our efforts all year! We began our in-house celebrations by gathering for a delicious traditional holiday lunch, catered by Carolina Gourmet Catering. There’s nothing like turkey and mashed potatoes to get you feeling festive! (Seriously though, their mashed potatoes could turn any ol’ Scrooge into Santa Clause himself.)

We couldn’t go to our festivities in just any old outfits, so our entire staff received these very cute and incredibly soft t-shirts from our lovely leaders. Will we ever take them off? Stay tuned…

On top of all this, some of our staff also participated in Secret Santa. As it turns out, we are very sneaky. There may have been some not-so-subtle questioning (and light internet stalking) trying to decide the perfect gift for our work pals, but all’s well that ends well!

We hope everyone enjoys the holidays and look forward to seeing you all in the New Year!

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Giving Thanks to Our JB Team

We hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving! Unlike millions of turkeys (sorry, turkeys), we here at JournalBooks, have a lot to be thankful for this year.

For us, Thanksgiving is all about community. We are proud to have our products made right here in Charlotte, North Carolina and couldn’t do that without our amazing Production staff. One of the ways we show how grateful we are for these unsung heroes is with our Annual Thanksgiving Pot Luck. Our office staff whips up their favorite dishes for the production staff to enjoy as a thank you for all of their hard work. Not only is this tradition a tasty one, but it’s also exciting to experience how our team celebrates with different cultures and traditions coming together to create one big delicious meal.

In addition to our in-house celebration, we also like to show our gratitude in our community by helping our neighbors in need. This year, we are sponsoring a Food and Fund Drive for Second Harvest of Metrolina. The Food Bank serves over 700 non-profit partners including emergency food pantries, soup kitchens, homeless shelters, and low-income day cares in order to help feed 527,000 people living in poverty in 19 North and South Carolina counties. If you’d like to help us contribute, you can donate online HERE

Customization isn’t scary…it’s simple!

We did it! We made it through the Halloween season and survived (arguably) the toughest dilemma of the year: what costume to choose? There’s nothing quite like the struggle of deciding how much you’re ready to invest in your Halloween look.  Once an idea forms, it’s easy to envision the most elaborate, creative version that will win every costume contest, thus ensuring your rightful position as Belle/Beau of theHalloween Ball, but is it feasible?

Here at JournalBooks, we take Halloween VERY seriously, as evidenced by the results of our annual costume contest. While some people take a year to plan every minute detail, others find themselves in a major time crunch. Regardless of how simple or complicated the process may be, having the right costume is crucial. This year’s contest had some brutal competition.We saw everything from witches and wizards to our third place winner, Freddie, as Michael Jackson. Some of the staff teamed up, coming as the ladies of the hit 90’s film, ‘Clueless’ and the cast of ‘Cinderella.’ Jewel really had her bases covered, showing up as Dionne then transforming into Polynesian Sauce as part of a group Chick-fil-A costume. Way to double-dip! Alas, not everyone can win, so we put it to a vote and Maricela Gonzalez’s commitment won her old lady costume the grand prize.

In the same way as we are dedicated to our favorite Halloween tradition, we are even more dedicated to understanding the importance of your business expressing its unique brand in the form of custom journals! Whether you’re the type to cut some holes in a sheet and call yourself Casper, or cover yourself in white paint and soot-covered rags to create the ultimate ghoul, we’ve got you covered. If you have a bit more time and a more flexible budget, we can work with you to create your dream book. Something like a custom poly color match journal (with some reversed art) and additional accessories would be quite the treat!  All we need from you is a bit of information.

To take your book from drab to fab, we simply start by asking what your basic needs are. We want to do the most with what we have to work with, so this is vital information in order to take the next step in creating your masterpiece.

  • What is your timeframe?
    • Do you need a proof? Can we swing a SureShip item?!
  • When will you need the product in-hands?
    • We have partially-made items and made-to-order items; what works depends on timing!
    • To where in the world are these shipping?
  • How many units will you need?
  • What is your budget?

With these few questions answered, we are now able to determine whether you’d be handing out Smarties or King-Sized Snicker bars, so to speak. The next step into creating the perfect book for your brand will be determining any art restrictions.

  • Can we modify the art?
    • When given creative liberties we have creative artists who can work with your art. 
  • Is specific color-matching required?

A book without purpose is just…a book. What is the purpose of your book? Knowing what your book will be used for, whether it’s general note-taking, planning an event, a work book for a seminar, or even a monthly calendar will help us recommend customizations that will boost your book to the next level. We’re JB connoisseurs, so let us guide you to what works best for you.

Goal: Make an impression! Be bold: build it. If you have the time, let’s make your brand stand out with features that aren’t included in competitor’s items that are pulled off shelves. Die-cut windows, textured or high-end covers, multiple methods of decoration, different binding styles, and custom printed filler or insert are all available!

If you don’t have the time, everyone loves a simple debossing on leather-like material, but kick it up a notch with oversized debossing or a full color artwork.  If you’re looking for a traditional journal, with a simple design that you can get for that impromptu meeting next week, we’re on it! An Ambassador, Bohemian, or Nova will do the trick! Throw a business card holder in there so you’re networking ready! Be ready to grow!

Don’t run around with “book.” It is your brand, not a brand. Let the creative season fuel you, and make the message matter!

JB and PCNA Employee Spotlight: Jonathan

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Jonathan Reid has been working for JournalBooks and PCNA, in Charlotte, for six years as a Kluge operator doing foil stamping, embossing, and die cutting.

Jonathan takes great pride in his work! “I love what I do and the opportunity to be creative. Every job is different, and I enjoy the challenge that comes with that.” Jonathan keeps samples of his most creative and challenging work and enjoys showing visitors when we have factory tours.

“Jonathan is a pleasure to work with and not only does his job exceptionally well, he also helps other team members whenever possible. He is truly a World Class Teammate” says JournalBooks President, Tim O’Boyle.

Outside of work, Jonathan enjoys spending time with his wife Taneisha, and their three children. He enjoys being a homebody and likes watching scary movies with his two daughters Desjourne and Alexia. His son, Jonathan Jr, is very active in boy scouts and Jonathon enjoys volunteering with his troop. He also likes to go bowling with his family.

In addition to enjoying time with his family, Jonathan is considered a handyman by many of his close friends. “I install a lot of flat screen TV’s for my friends and fix things for them.”

Charlie Hollifield: 1st Place Winner of The 2016 & 2017 Halloween Contests

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It’s just another day, another dollar for Charlie Hollifield here at JournalBooks. For the second year in a row, Charlie managed to put his creative and crafty mind to good use as he hand-made his winning 2017 Halloween costume.

I got a chance to catch up with Hollifield and ask how he feels about his success. According to Charlie he did not anticipate coming in first place both years, but 2016 was just a learning experience for him. Rumor had it that Charlie was not allowed to win again, but Charlie said he knew how hard he worked, so maybe the judges would reconsider. His 2016 scarecrow was brought to life after a long night the night before the 2016 contest.

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The 2017 “Ancient tribal druid shaman” (titled by Charlie) took weeks to build. He said, “I gotta defend my title,” so of course he worked harder on his 2017 costume. He carved hooved stilts and a tribal mask, and then he tied everything together with whatever fabrics he could find.

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When it comes to his creativity he seems quite confident, so I had to know: Charlie, have you always been this artistic? The answer is yes! That’s why he went to school for Fine Arts. Looks like the rest of us have to try a bit harder to topple the man, the myth, and the legend that is the Charlie Hollifield. Hard work pays off, folks! Who knew? However, just because Charlie took the gold medal does not mean that there wasn’t some serious competition on the prowl this year.

Asking around the days before the contest, everyone was extremely secretive. Ella from marketing said, “if I don’t place, it’s rigged.” Sarah from Business Development rode a tricycle and wore red contacts; Elizabeth came in with sound effects; some, including myself, decided to team up with other JB employees. Everyone had a game plan, and everyone looked great! Rachel in BD got married on Halloween, but before she left she angrily said, “I am seriously upset that I am missing [the contest].” Well Rachel, you missed a good one. Everyone, start getting ready for next year.

Credit: Eddie Rodriguez

ASI 5 Star Supplier Performance Ratings!

Jonathon Miller with Jack Nadel International commented: “I am never let down when I work with JournalBooks! Always pleasant to work with, reliable, great products! I wish all companies were like them!”

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Erika Palant Schwartz with Jack Nadel International commented: “Charlie Hollifield and Courtney Salmon are amazing. JournalBooks is a wonderful company to work with and their customer service is top notch.

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