At the age of 14, Marlo Greta started a hair accessory business that has landed her in the pages of Seventeen magazine.
Greta, a junior fashion merchandising major and art minor, is part of the university’s entrepreneurship program and will be featured in a May Seventeen article about young entrepreneurship.
She started making her unique hair clips at home with felt and relied on her parents for financial support. Because she was too young to drive, Greta said she sold her products at school.
As she got older, her business grew with the help of her parents, teachers and owners of boutiques in Austin, her hometown. Getting into business at a young age helped lessen the risk factor, she said.
Brad Hancock, director of the Neeley Entrepreneurship Center and Greta’s mentor, said being able to create a one-of-a-kind product is something that made Greta stand out and receive the 2009 TCU Texas Youth Entrepreneur of the Year Award. The award praises hard-working high school students and gives them the opportunity to join the university’s program.
Greta has further developed her website, market and knowledge through this program, and Hancock said the Seventeen article would reflect well on the program’s success. Her creative drive and maturity she had coming into the university helped her become successful, he said.
Greta also has shown her passion for creating art and going above and beyond what was expected in her classes at TCU, Charles Varner, an adjunct illustration professor, said.
“Her entire artistic sensibility, background and talent all go together, I’m sure, to make the products what they are,” Varner said.
He said the Seventeen article might even encourage enrollment in the university’s art department.
The problem now is getting supply to meet demand, Loree Greta, Marlo’s mother, said. With the added publicity of the Seventeen article, they plan to hire employees from Craigslist to piece together Marlo’s designs.
Through her business, Marlo has gained the confidence to be a role model to others, her mother said. She teaches art classes in the summer, speaks at different high schools and hopes to intern at TOMS in the future.
Once she finishes her degree, she said she planned to improve her website, marloadelle.com, start a fashion blog and expand into the wedding industry. She said she encourages others to put themselves out there.
“My biggest piece of advice is to remind people that there is never a better time to start a business than now,” Marlo said. “You have more resources now than you’ll ever have, because everyone loves to help when you are young.”
Marlo’s brand, Marloadelle, can be found on her website, on Etsy shop, on Facebook and on Twitter.
An interview request with Seventeen magazine was declined until the article is published in May.