Student Small Businesses: Giselle Rodriguez

Giselle Rodriguez

“Before this, I didn’t really feel like I’m 16. I felt like I was still more of like a kid, but now I kind of feel more like a teenager or a young adult.”

“I started [my acrylic album shop] because I made a Tik Tok on the [acrylic albums] that I gave my boyfriend. It was his birthday, he’s really into music, and it’s a really big part of his life, so it would have been really special for him. 

There were a lot of things that I didn’t understand at the start [of making my shop], I had to learn everything on my own and help myself out. When I first put the albums on my Etsy shop, a bunch of people were flooding in and ordering, and I was getting so many orders at one time. I had website difficulties because I didn’t really know how to use it. Just making all of [the glass albums] in a short period of time and working things out with the website was really difficult. I also stressed about the quality of everything. I knew that everything was good quality, but I didn’t know if other people would perceive it the same way. 

Giselle offers her shop on Etsy, where customers can customize the song or album that they want to buy.

I was really surprised [when I went viral]. I didn’t expect that many people to see my video. I honestly expected just maybe my friends to see the video. I had no idea it was going to turn into that. I think that was a really good thing though. I feel like if [my video] didn’t go as viral as it did, I wouldn’t have made the shop, and I wouldn’t have made money off of it. 

[The best part was] [s]eeing the business aspects of everything. [Business] is something that I feel like I could be really interested in in the future. A lot of people my age are starting to work, and I didn’t work before this, so I feel like it taught me a bunch about business and making money for myself instead of my parents giving me money. [Being] my own person, if that makes sense. It made me feel my age. Before this, I didn’t really feel like I’m 16. I felt like I was still more of like a kid, but now I kind of feel more like a teenager or a young adult. And it’s a good feeling to have when you create something of your own and have it become successful.”