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Oklahoma's Own: Tulsa Teen Takes A Leap Of Faith

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"Splash-of-Fash" located in The Market "Splash-of-Fash" located in The Market
Shay Finch arranging merchandise in her store. Shay Finch arranging merchandise in her store.
Shay Finch with her mom Sherri Finch. Shay Finch with her mom Sherri Finch.
TULSA, Oklahoma -

The struggling economy has especially taken its toll on small businesses across the U.S. But despite the risks there are still more than 27 million out there.

Many of them are run by younger people who would rather strike out on their own than face an uncertain job market.

In Tulsa, there is one young person who is an Oklahoma's Own with that entrepreneurial spirit. Many teenagers work in retail to make extra cash. But a Tulsa Union 8th grader says instead of working in a clothing store, why not own the store?

Shay Finch has an eye for bold clothes. Not too long ago, shopping sparked a very bold idea.

"We started walking around and I was like, 'Mom, what if we had a booth here?'" said Shay Finch.

Many moms might have brushed it off as a pipe dream.

"In today's economy, a lot of adults are taking jobs that teens would normally have," said Shay's mom Sherri Finch.

But Sherri Finch saw an opportunity to inspire her daughter.

"I'm going to help you do it because I am a firm believer, if you find your passion, you find your place," said Sherri Finch.

For now, that place is a ten-by-ten booth where Shay runs a boutique called "Splash-of-Fash."

"It has unique, signature style for everyone. So a splash of fashion for everyone," said Shay Finch.

It's inside The Market, where more than 100 sellers pay rent for stall space, and share commission on sales.

"She paid her six months' rent in six weeks, so she's doing something right," said Sherri Finch.

Shay picks out and sells all the clothes and accessories.

"We love bling so we had to bring a lot of bling into here," said Shay Finch.

Her parents help crunch the numbers. Any profits will go toward buying a car. But the bottom line is, she's still just 14 years old so customers often catch her doing homework while manning the booth.

"I feel like I'm maturing a lot faster. I feel I'm living an adult life a little bit," said Shay Finch.

She hopes her teenaged dream will help design a lifelong career. The Finches gave us some tips for families with teenagers who want to start their own businesses.

Number one, think of something unique that will fill a void. Then you'll be able to narrow down your target audience.

Finally, manage your money expectations. Very few people become teenage billionaires overnight. It may take several years to turn a profit.

Splash-of-Fash Facebook page

 

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