Emily McGeorge, a seventh-grader at Heritage Middle School, doesn’t need to take any business classes. She’s getting firsthand experience.
She has been running her own jewelry business and selling her jewelry at Pure Roots, 18 N. State St., for more than a year now.
She’s occasionally sold her “Em’s Gems” at special events, such as an Aug. 29 special sale outside the Sunny Street Cafe, 644 N. State St.
Emily estimates she’s made more than 500 pieces of jewelry to sell.
For the Aug. 29 sale, which she prepped for by creating more than 100 pieces, she donated 10 percent of her profits back to Sunny Street Cafe so the restaurant could donate the funds back to a charitable cause of its choice.
“It’s very generous of them to let me borrow their space to sell my jewelry,” she said of Sunny Street owner Megan Ada.
“I wanted to give something back,” she said.
Before Emily began making jewelry, she had a duct tape crafting business she called “Tape It Up.”
She handmade bracelets, rings, lanyards, backpacks and pillows — all out of duct tape.
Then one year, for Christmas, her grandmother gave her a beading kit. Her business changed.
“I started playing with the bead kit and thought, ‘This is so cool,’ ” she said. “So the next day, my mom took me to the store and I bought some special tools and more beads.”
Emily visited her great-grandmother’s home and friends noticed the jewelry she was wearing.
“My friends placed orders for me to make them jewelry and I thought, ‘I’m going to need a bajillion more beads to make all these!’ “
In addition to using beads, she also incorporates stones she finds into her jewelry.
“Our family went to Michigan for vacation and I found all these neat-looking rocks. I polished them, wrapped wire around them and used leather strips to make necklaces.”
In August 2014, she worked with the owner of Pure Roots and started selling her creations there.
She explained that most months, when she sells $30 worth of jewelry, she will net $18 from the sales at Pure Roots. Emily estimates she spends about 20 percent of her profits on materials.
In addition to selling her jewelry in Pure Roots, she also makes custom jewelry.
“A friend from my dad’s country club placed an order for like 100 pieces, so I’m starting to do more bulk orders, but they are still all original creations.”
Stephanie McGeorge, Emily’s mother, is the assistant principal at Westerville North High School.
She said she is proud of Emily for getting real life experience while doing something she loves.
“I love that she is learning experience to budget her money and time while also finding a way to make money at something she loves,” her mother said. “She balances the hectic schedule of sports, school (and) her jewelry making.”
McGeorge praised Emily for valuing the importance of giving to others, especially in terms of donating some of her profits.
One of Emily’s favorite pieces is a bracelet she wears herself. It features birthstones — each of her parent’s with her own in the middle.
Her father, Collins McGeorge, is a regional sales manager for Industrial Magnetics Inc.
On top of running her jewelry business Emily is a member of the seventh-grade volleyball team at Heritage and a Student Ambassador. She plans to try out for the school softball team in the spring.
“Usually, I go to school, go to volleyball, eat dinner, do my homework and then make some jewelry,” she said.
“I like being busy but sometimes it can be tricky to find time to hang out with friends.”
Emily said she sees her enterprise getting bigger and better as she progresses more into the jewelry-making business.
“I don’t feel like I have enough to fill a whole store yet. But my goal in life is to get my jewelry in as many stores as possible.”
Next project? An e-commerce website.