Student personalizes bows for customers

By Saniya Khan

While most students on campus buy their own hair products, Nicole Saviolis, a junior studying Professional Communications with a minor in Marketing,  has recently started her own business, Canolie Creations. Canolie Creations are unique handmade accessories used to express individuality and passion.  

As each piece is inspired by the individual customer, everything is personalized to reflect whatever the customer is most passionate about.  The company offers a broad range of colors, designs, and patterns, as well as a full line of items supporting the military. After only five months, Canolie Creations has quickly grown into a successful business with more than 500 orders consisting of over 3,000 individual items so far.  Back in April 2014, Saviolis was searching for a way to keep her mind off of her boyfriend's impending move from Wyoming to his permanent duty station in Germany as a U.S. Airman.  While they had learned to manage weekend visits between New York and Wyoming, trips across the Atlantic Ocean would be more difficult to plan and definitely more expensive.  

"My two part-time jobs and multiple on-campus jobs were not going to be enough to cover the cost of the frequent visits he and I planned on having, said Saviolis.  "I decided to start my own business because deep down, I've always been an entrepreneur. My business now takes up 100% of my free time, making it a lot easier to cope with the 3,768 miles between us."

Although running her business comes with a lot of challenges, Saviolis notes her biggest obstacle was herself.  When others tried to copy her business model or sent her hateful messages, she originally let those comments get to her. This lead her to start second guessing herself.   "It took a lot of self reflection to realize that I am already well ahead of these people because I took the initiative and the extremely daunting step into entrepreneurship, rather than try to piggyback on someone else's success," she explains.   

While Saviolis continues to grow personally along with her business, she does offer the advice of learning to develop a thick skin first to those thinking of also starting their own business.  She has come to realize that this step is "essential to surviving emotionally because a business cannot run if its owner is unsure of themselves." Canolie Creations carries a variety of designs, including nursing and teaching themed fabric, as well as rotating and seasonal ones. To support a local business and a fellow Molloy student, prospective customers can learn about the different products and styles offered, as well as pricing for each, by visiting Canolie Creations' Instagram page (@CanolieCreations) or Facebook Page (Canolie Creations), or by emailing Nicole Saviolis at CanolieCreations@gmail.com.