Project description

Business Owner: Mackenzie Holland
Business: The Whimsie
Location: Old Orchard Beach, Maine

Meet Mackenzie
As the first generation in her family to attend college, Mackenzie was also the first to graduate. She obtained her undergraduate degree in English Education, and a Master’s degree in Communication Sciences and Disorders. Mackenzie now works as a pediatric speech-language pathologist, a position that she dearly loves. Together with her husband she has established a happy productive life but has recently felt more pressed to satisfy her creative craving and her dream of owning her own jewelry business ,– “I have always felt pulled toward the creative world. I was an art student, a theater student, and eventually, in my late teens and early twenties, visual and wearable arts became my passion. I started to notice what mattered most to people around me in terms of possessions. They loved their art collections; they loved their jewelry, especially the pieces with a story or with character. I felt drawn toward crystals and their meanings, and have always worn them. I put the two together, and began to sketch out ideas for a business venture.”

The Creation of The Whimsie:
As any small business owner, Mackenzie was faced with roadblocks and setbacks. She faced the tug-of-war between staying in her career or taking that leap of faith and acting and making her dream into a reality. Studying the jewelry industry, saving for the equipment, and now executing proper planning, The Whimsie is now established. Still in its early infancy, The Whimsie has rapidly gained positive recognition in a short amount of time. With her success thus far, Mackenzie takes pride in following her initial gut feeling and taking action to bring her dream to life.  She certainly has struck gold with her unique one of a kind handmade jewelry.  Her customer base is growing daily. “I took several weeks and sketched. I created a business-challenged person’s version of a business plan at first, just jotted down my ideas, along with more practical items such as start-up costs, time involved, and immediate returns on my investment. I then took several weeks to start making pieces. I knew I wanted a more boutique feel—only one or two of each item created per batch. Once I had built up a comfortable level of inventory, I took days to photograph pieces. I had no idea what to expect the first couple of weeks of The Whimsie being ‘out loud.’ Due to the super positive response, my husband and I are now currently in the process of becoming an LLC! I am just over the moon about this.”

“I wanted to create a small business whose products inspire the slow and wonderful beauty of life. The natural simplicity, organic shapes, and stunning colors of the world around us. And I wanted these creations to be wearable, ethical, versatile, and most of all— gorgeous in the eyes of all who seek them. The Whimsie’s mission is and will always be to add to the beauty of the world. I am still a very young business owner, and I have so much to learn. But when you create from your heart— and you create to fulfill a dream— I really don’t think you can go wrong.”

Creativity, Passion and Healing
Mackenzie believes that all things that you purchase should make you happy. Each piece of jewelry that she creates has its own handmade personal touch. Not only does her passion for art show in her exclusive crystal pieces, but she also has a love for her current and future customers. She wants each of her customers to feel valued and inspired through her jewelry, “The items you wear and have on your body should make you feel confident. That’s why I use natural stones and always include the meaning of the stone with your purchase. Keep things that make you happy close to you, always!”

Your Intuition Will Lead You to Your Success
When the thoughts of giving up ever cross your mind, Mackenzie advises that you dismiss them and replace them with positive thoughts. Think back of the original exciting, creative ideas that made you want to start and begin the entrepreneur journey,–“Listen to your gut. Decide from the beginning, are you going to stick this out? Tell yourself you can do this. You can make it work! Also, set small, achievable goals, and stick to them. Every goal I have set so far I have met, and I believe it is because they were just at the challenge point for The Whimsie. A great way, I find, to set goals, is to think hard about what is realistic, and set your gaze JUST beyond that. Always leave room for challenge and growth in goal setting.” Mackenzie also advises that you not be afraid to share your voice, “It is OK to put yourself out there. I know my little business is still an infant, and I know I will have periods in both the red and the black—but if you stand behind your product, and you are making a quality product, an audience will always find you.”