Artisan Crafted


Taylor Golmen

Senior Taylor Golmen makes her earrings out of polymer clay and sells them in boutiques

Being an entrepreneur and running one’s own business is a dream for many. A few students at NHS have accomplished this goal and now share their experiences as young business owners.

Senior Maci Ward began working with her mom for their Etsy shop, MaciLooMakings, her freshman year.

“My mom and I run what started as a jewelry business, selling earrings made out of string,” Ward said. “Now we sell macrame cord and little findings for people to buy and make themselves.”

Due to trends and personal reasons, what a shop sells can change over time. Senior Taylor Golmen founded Taylor Nicole Designs. Her products can be found on Instagram.

“I make polymer clay jewelry and accessories such as earrings, keychains and lanyards,” Golmen said. “I remember very vividly that I made my first sale on the Fourth of July this past summer. I had started working with some clay prior to that so I could make some earrings for me and my mom, but then other people started taking an interest.”

Clay jewelry became very popular towards the end of 2020. For Golmen and many other businesses who create polymer clay items, the hope is that this trend continues.

Younger students are also creating their own businesses. Freshman Donovan Elliott helped start the Pxser Skateboarding brand, which sells skateboards for less as well as apparel.

“It’s been a little bit more than a year,” Elliott said. “I started it with some of my friends around last February.”

Smooth sailing is not guaranteed when starting or maintaining a business. Lockdown caused a lot of small businesses to sink, but not for Ward.

“It didn’t start out all that successful but, especially over quarantine, people were bored so they were just buying lots of things,” Ward said. “Now we sell quite a bit every week.”

Having a business can be a big responsibility or take up a lot of time, especially when what is being sold is in high demand.

“Pxser is still going and people are asking me to order more things,” Elliott said. “I actually have to get in more shirts because I didn’t have enough.”

Ward had to learn to balance school and work when class came back in session. “Initially, it was a lot easier,” Ward said. “Over quarantine, I would work five or six hours a day doing that stuff. Now I mostly just help after school with little things like packaging orders and getting them to the post office.”

Lightening the workload helped Ward have more time for school. When a person runs their own business it is important to not overdo it.

“Balance has been a huge struggle for me honestly,” Golmen said. “Not only am I working on finishing up my high school career and running a business, but I am also a volleyball player who competes very highly. There are several weekends where I am out of town playing and cannot work on my earrings. Several nights I have stayed up until about 2 a.m. working just to turn around and go to school the next day.”

The sacrifice can be worth it. Giving back to the community is something that was important for Elliott.

“The thing that I love most about it is giving people a cheap alternative to buying skateboards because a lot of them are very expensive,” Elliott said. “The alternative helps a lot of people, especially in Nixa.”

While alternatives are nice, some encouragement might be all one needs to get started.

“To anyone that wants to start a business, just do it,” Golmen said. “You never know the opportunities you are going to come across and no matter what happens, you will find pride in yourself. It does take some time to get started so my advice is to start small, start with prices low, stay organized and save your money. It’s okay to be afraid to fail because that fear will push you to prove it wrong and succeed.”