Our five young entrepreneurs and one of their biggest supporters, realtor Bill Denny of The Bill Denny Group, Long and Foster Realtors. Photo by Christine Craddock
These five tween and teen entrepreneurs are making their way in the world of business
Photos by Christine Craddock
As you’re probably well aware, October 16 is Haymarket Day. What you’re probably less likely to be aware of, is that our area’s most popular community event is also a very big day for five young entrepreneurs.
Ferris Brown, Kelsie Hargis, Dezi Rebelo, Madison Reunart, and Reagan Swenson, the majority of whom call Haymarket home (Madison resides in Warrenton), will be there touting their terrific wares and donating a percentage of the day’s sales from each of their respective businesses to local charities. Thanks to the support of local realtor Bill Denny of The Bill Denny Group, Long and Foster Realtors, these five savvy young business women will be in one booth and they really hope you’ll stop by.
To give you an idea of who they are and what kind of business they’ve started, read on for all the details and make it a point to visit them on Haymarket Day!
Ferris Brown and Reagan Swenson, Haymarket. Co-owners, Gloss Goddess Lips
What woman doesn’t love lip gloss, particularly all natural lip gloss? Ferris Brown and Reagan Swenson, both 12 years-old and in the seventh grade at Bull Run Middle School, love lip gloss. They also love doing crafts and experiments, and it was that passion that led them to start Gloss Goddess Lips. Gloss Goddess Lips offers all-natural, moisturizing lip gloss in a variety of scents and flavors and while both Ferris and Reagan love getting out and selling their line at different places now that the business is more established, they’ll tell you that the start-up phase was tough.
“The hardest part of starting our business was finding and deciding on the all-natural ingredients to include,” said Reagan. “We wanted to be sure our customers didn’t have any reaction to them,” added Ferris.
So what’s the best part of being in business together? “The best part of the business is spending lots of time together doing the things we love the most,” said Ferris. “And,” added Reagan, “since we both want to be teachers when we’re older and teachers do have to be crafty, creating a lip gloss line has certainly made us better in that respect.”
You can find Gloss Goddess Lips on Facebook at Gloss Goddess Lips.
Kelsie Hargis, Haymarket. Owner, Fashion Scrunchies Hair Accessories
“I was inspired to start my business by my mom, who also has a small business,” said 13 year-old Kelsie Hargis of Haymarket. “I’ve always loved doing things like lemonade stands and making things to sell, so owning a hair accessory business was a natural outgrowth of that.”
The Bull Run Middle School eighth grader has experienced her share of ups and downs since starting Fashion Scrunchies Hair Accessories. “I would say the hardest thing so far about having a business is marketing and finding what people are interested in,” said Kelsie. Any small – or big – business person would agree with that completely. They’d also understand the reasons she remains undeterred.
“What I really love about having a business is meeting customers and keeping track of orders from new states,” said Kelsie, adding “I’m not sure what I want to be when I grow up yet, but having a small business would be fun!”
Dezi Rebelo, Haymarket. Owner, Wag & Woof
It all started one day in 2018 when Dezi Rebelo, now 14 years old and a freshman at Gainesville High School, was feeding her dog a treat. “Why are the ingredients on this label impossible to pronounce?” she asked her mother. “Because they’re not natural,” her mother, Barbi, replied.
With her dad’s encouragement, Dezi launched Wag & Woof, an all natural line of dog treats that has recently expanded to include pill pockets.
“My dad owns a concrete company and he said ‘Why not be your own boss? You can make your own hours and make all the decisions?’ And I thought that sounded great,” said Dezi.
Almost as great as her passion for dogs.
“I love dogs,” Dezi said, “any and all dogs. It makes me happy to be around them and happier still to know my treats are high in protein and good for them.
Now four years old, 10-15% of Wag & Woof profits are donated monthly to a variety of non-profits of Dezi’s choosing. “I believe in giving back,” she said. “I have donated to Gray Face Acres, A Hand Up, and a variety of animal shelters. I just think it’s the right thing to do.”
You can find Wag & Woof on Facebook at Wag & Woof.
Madison Renuart, Warrenton. Owner, Scents of Love Candle Co.
When Madison Renuart was 12 years-old, she started making homemade candles and launched Scents of Love Candle Co. shortly thereafter. If you’re wondering why candles, well they have a special meaning to the now 14 year-old eighth grader at Highland School.
“I have ADHD and anxiety,” said Madison, “and candles have always helped calm me on days when I struggle. I wanted to make my own candles so I could share the same peace and calm they give me with others.”
All Scents of Love Candle Co. candles are 100% natural soy wax with no dyes or additives and, because candles help her, Madison pays it forward and helps others. She donates 10% of every candle sale to non-profit organizations that are close to her heart and refers to this aspect of her business as Candles for a Cause. To date, she has donated $1,449 to a variety of charities.
As with having any small business, getting the hang of balancing work and life can be tough. “The most challenging part is learning how to juggle school and activities while running my business,” she says. It’s worth it though, when she sees the difference that her donations have made. “To date, $1,049 of the profits have gone to animal rescue, and currently I’m supporting Gray Face Acres Senior Dog Rescue with my sales.” Clearly Madison’s Candles for a Cause is a hit with customers and even a retailer now, too. Recently, Remix Market in Warrenton began carrying her Scents of Love Candle Co. line.
“That was super exciting,” she says. “When Remix Market chose to carry my candles I could hardly believe it!
You can find Scents of Love Candle Co. online at scentsoflovecandleco.com and on Facebook @scentsoflovecandleco.