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The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

Students turns sticker shop to small sweatshirt business

Hendricks with one of her newer designs available on her website. PHOTO: LUKAS VAN SANT ’21/THE HAWK

One night last winter break, Ali Hendricks ’23 realized that being at home for so long because of the coronavirus pandemic left her with a lot of free time on her hands. So Hendricks did what any enterprising marketing major might do: she started her own business. 

That business, AllAliMakes, began with Hendricks’s custom-designed sweatshirts but has since expanded to include sweatpants as well. 

“Over winter break was probably the peak of how busy I was,” Hendricks said. “I was probably making 30 sweatshirts a day.” 

The pandemic also gave Hendricks more customers.

“The pandemic not only increased online shopping, but it’s given me more free time to focus on putting more effort into my work,” Hendricks said. 

Hendricks creates her designs in Adobe Illustrator, then prints them on vinyl, which she presses onto the sweats with a hot iron. Once she adds products to her website, where she sells the sweats for $35 to $79, depending on the design, they do not last long. 

At times, Hendricks has had trouble keeping up with demand.

“I would load my website,” Hendricks said. “I would stock it up with about 100 items, and then I would go on my Instagram and say, ‘Alright, they’re going to be dropped at 6 p.m.’ They would actually sell really, really quick. Then people would DM me. ‘Can you restock this?’ Once I would restock, the same thing [would happen] over and over. My DMs are a little flooded. I can’t always get around to them, but I try my best.”

Hendricks said she is responsive to customers who ask for different colors or other changes to fit their tastes, and that customizing is important to her and what sets her business apart. 

“If you look at bigger companies or bigger brands, they can’t necessarily take a picture and be like, ‘Oh, yeah, let me do this, let me change this font,’” Hendricks said. “They can’t customize it. But the way I make them through Adobe Illustrator, it can literally be customized any way you want.” 

From a young age, Hendricks said she knew she wanted to create and own her own business. In 2017, when she was in high school, Hendricks opened her very own Etsy shop, selling custom-designed stickers. 

“People would just ask me to make them stickers after seeing my own water bottle or my laptop, and then it got to a point where so many people were asking me,” Hendricks said. “After that it just evolved.” 

Hendricks said balancing her sticker business in high school helped prepare her for operating one while in college.

“That taught me time management lessons because when I was in high school, I played sports, so I was literally always coming home from practice and working, doing stickers and then finding time for homework in between all of that,” Hendricks said. 

Longtime friend Ali Shannon Moran ’23 said Hendricks’s creativity is her trademark and that she is often able to do things that “no one else could really pull off.”

Maggie McLaughlin ’23, an avid buyer of sweats, owns a variety of Hendricks’s products, which she said are a good value for the quality. 

“They’re so soft. I probably have 10 by now,” McLaughlin said. “I wear them every single day. They’re so comfortable.”

Hendricks said AllAliMakes is not about making money but doing what she loves.  

“I’ve always wanted to do something where I can work and do something that I really enjoy at the same time,” Hendricks said. “Seeing people wearing my sweatshirts makes me happy.”

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Natalie Nevins
Natalie Nevins, Copy Editor
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