The Top Knot Studio

Updated: Jul 16, 2020

Hi everybody! My name is Kennedy and I am the CEO and owner of The Top Knot Studio!

First of all, I want to say a huge thank you to Rebel Compass for having me as a guest, I am so honored! Today I’m going to talk about how I started my business and some tips and advice for anyone out there who is interested in becoming a business owner!

So to start off, I was in 7th grade when I had the idea of starting my own business. My mom had started a business a while ago and to me it seemed like so much fun! I loved to make other people happy, encourage them, make art, and the idea of having something of my own that would affect other people than myself in the real world. I then decided to make some bath scrubs and sell them around my local neighborhood. While that was very successful, I still felt like it wasn’t really my thing.

Fast forward to the end of 8th grade, when I decided to try this whole business idea again. This time I asked myself, what are people my age more likely going to be attracted to? After some consideration, I thought, “Well, I can sew, and girls my age love hair accessories now, so why don’t I try scrunchies?!?” That was it! I figured out what would bring business success and what customers wanted. I went to a local craft fair to bring my business to a broader range of people with about 100-150 scrunchies I had made, and ended up selling out within the first 30 minutes! I wanted to further my business and make an Instagram account, but something came up and so I wasn’t able to.

Now we are at the end of my freshman year of high school/the beginning of quarantine. I was able to start up my Instagram account and resume my scrunchie business, then my sewing machine broke! I needed something temporarily to do, and so I tried out graphic design. After about 2 months, I found what inspires me the most! I love doing custom illustrations, prints, stickers, and illustrate what is around me!

In the future, my vision is to have my own pop up brick and mortar shop full of designs, stickers, and much more! I hope to partner up with certain big businesses and make my own line of their product! Having my prints in stores is something that I would be so honored to have as well.

Now for some advice! I would say that if you wanted to start a business, make sure that you identify WHO your audience is and the kind of people you are targeting. Then ask yourself, WHAT you will be selling and giving to others, as well as what platforms will you be using to further your audience. Next, think of WHEN you will start, plan out your products, plan a timeline of what you want to accomplish.

Then think of WHY are you wanting to do this? Is it because you are wanting to bring in money or is it because you want to bring customers and clients a product or service that will benefit them. Finally, HOW are you going to get started? What tools will you need? How will you manage everything? I cannot stress this enough, that engagement with your audience is so important in the business world! People can tell if you are committed to a business or if you are doing it just because.

Don’t be afraid to tell others about your business, a little bit about yourself, what the meaning is behind it! You got this! You have an entire world of people supporting you and cheering you on! It will be tough at some points, days you want to quit, you feel like everything is falling apart, but I assure you that you will not go unnoticed! You and your hard work will be recognized and celebrated!

I hope that me coming in and talking today helped some of you! If you ever need advice, don’t be afraid to dm me real quickly!

~Kennedy Raftery

The Top Knot Studio

*To check out Kennedy's stunning prints on Instagram @thetopknotstudio! I love this girls style!

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