Business booms for “Beads by Molly B.”

CNU sophomore Molly Birken finds success in selling handmade necklaces

How many times have you heard yourself and your fellow college students complain about needing money? Probably a lot, but some students at Christopher Newport have creative side jobs where their target market is other college students.

Molly Birken, a sophomore at CNU, is one of these students who created her own handmade crochet necklace business called Beads By Molly B.   

 Birken just started her business over the summer of 2019 and has already had a lot of success with selling her unique products. 

She has utilized social media as her main platform to sell her products through Instagram direct messaging. 

Her Instagram account can be found at @beadsbymollyb, where she posts images of the different pieces she makes that are ready to sell to customers. If a certain product in a post catches someone’s eye, they can direct message her to buy that specific one, or they can even ask her to make them a customized order.

Birken described how she decided to start selling her necklaces. “My grandma taught me how to crochet when I was little and my mom bought me a similar necklace, so I decided to try and see if I could make some for myself and I got a lot of compliments on them on campus so I decided to start selling,” she said.

Birken’s business became so popular over social media that she even ships her necklaces to different states. “I ship a lot of necklaces to people who live in other places. I’ve sent to people as far as California.”  

In addition to necklaces, Birken also makes bracelets that cost $5 each and anklets that cost $12 each. All the necklaces range from $15-$27 depending on how complex each one is.

She has also come out with letter charm necklaces where anyone can customize their initials, full name or even the name of their sorority. Birken’s whole collection is very extensive as well as affordable for college students. 

Having a side business in college may seem like it could be challenging to juggle the demand from customers, as well as schoolwork on top of it all.Birken also works as an FDA here at CNU; however, she is able to keep up with orders without stress. “I am very lucky to have found a good balance between filling orders and work and schoolwork,” she said.

If you would like to check out her collection of necklaces, you can find them on her instagram @beadsbymollyb. Birken says that her most popular product is “the longer crochet necklaces.” 

She is also currently having a Christmas sale, and she said, “If you order before December 1st, your order will be 15 percent off. If you order two  pieces you will get 20 percent off, and all orders of three or more pieces will be 30 percent off.”

College students who find themselves complaining about not having money may have a talent like Birken does that they can use to their advantage.

If you want to create a side business like Beads by Molly B. to make a little extra money for yourself, think about what your brand could be and give it a shot. It never hurts to put yourself out there and try.

~Caitlin Doyle, Staff Writer~

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