Art by Marla Rae

American Made Since 2011

Marla Rae Anders

Hastings, Nebraska
After over 30 years, Marla Rae Anders of Hastings, NE has gone back to her artistic roots!

Tell us about your business.

For the last 30 years I have been using my creative abilities in ways to help out whatever the cause...I have always been in the 'Gift Industry' business... designing everything from wood items, jewelry, gourmet food items to candles. A few years ago I started my own little side business called "Plaid Couch Designs", mainly to help others with graphic design work...designing logos, business cards and the like. My husband Brian and I also continue to host the annual 'Barn Festival' in Hastings, a big arts and crafts event that people have been attending since 1994. After raising 3 children in the home business, I am excited about returning to my artistic roots, and so happy to be doing what I passionately LOVE to do! In two short years, I have 235 designs published, and look forward to what the future holds as I continue to create on a daily basis. My art is now licensed to several companies, being used on a variety of items including mugs, journals, throws, pillows, calendars, etc.

What makes your business stand out?

This year my motto for the year has been 'Actions Speak Louder', and I am striving to live this out with a massive art project that I have titled 'Actions Speak Louder'. Over the last couple of years I have been so busy proclaiming these wonderful words and phrases on canvas, that I realized I was saying a lot more than I was actually doing...thus, 'Actions Speak Louder'. Having been in the craft/gift industry for the last 20+ years, the last couple years of staying at home and creating every day has been the most rewarding thing ever! After I come up with a creation, I send it off to my publisher, and they take it from there, doing all of the marketing and selling! I love the flexibility, and being able to do special projects, such as the "Actions Speak Louder" project. Go here for more information:

What's the best business advice you've received?

The best advice that I received is to never go into debt, and after getting a business well establish, sell it, and move on to a new venture! I love that idea, as I love change and new ventures.

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