The Small Businesses of Blake: Keychains and Tarot Cards and Trinkets, Oh My!

Exclusive interviews from 3 student-run small businesses at our very own high school. I spoke with and questioned Makayla Castillo, Mack Taylor, and Gray Tejada about their business and what challenges they might face working as their own boss. Coming out of the pandemic, there’s been a rise of small business culture among Gen Z, with many people monetizing their hobbies and preferring making and selling than your run of the mill job. So let’s get to know our young entrepreneurs!

Makayla’s Custom Keychains – Makayla Castillo

What do they sell?

Makalya sells customized and premade keychains and earrings. She’ll take any drawing you want and turn it into a keychain. Makayla also plans to branch out to other products such as necklaces and bracelets in the future.

What are their prices? 

$10 per custom keychain, $3-$5 for premade earrings, $7 for customized earrings, and 3D keychains cost $15.

Makayla started her business because she wanted to become more financially independent. She wanted to start earning her own money that didn’t come from her parents. 

Makayla: β€œI wanted to be able to say I was spending MY money.”

Naturally the money is her favorite part but the creative process can also be enjoyable. Makayla’s least favorite part is when her oven burns the products, and occasionally she says she loses motivation and completing an order can be more stressful than fun. She mostly only deals with challenges in the quality of her product. Makayla says sometimes keychains break or don’t come out of the oven looking well and sometimes she needs to flatten out the plastic.

As previously mentioned Makayla has made plans for a possible rebrand in the future so she can be more inclusive to customers outside of Blake. She mentioned how she had to change some of the colors she used and different pencils to make her keychains stand out more. Her main big change is an increase in the amount of different products she sells. 

Do they have an Instagram business account? How’s it looking?


The account mentions what she does, her prices and how to submit a picture. Posts consist of customers holding up their keychains or simply the drawing-turned keychain.

Sun and Moon Tarot Card – Mack Taylor

Mack sells tarot card readings. It’s a form of Cartomancy (Fortune telling) that people use to gain insight on a person’s past, present, or future. The customer asks a question and they pull cards to interpret the possibilities in their life.

What are their prices?

3 Card Spread – $5

5 Card Spread – $10

+5 Card Spread – $2 per card

If you get 2 people to come see her, you get a 3 card spread for free!

Mack started their business after receiving encouragement from friends. She also realized that even though she was already balancing  extracurricular activities, school, a job, her siblings and a pet rabbit to take care of, she wanted to do something new. Mack has previously done many readings for friends, family members, and a few of his teachers, many of which encouraged him to go ahead with their business as they held high praise for his skill.

Mack’s favorite thing about readings is seeing people’s reactions. Sometimes people are surprised and wonder if she’s been spying on them. She really enjoys knowing that she’s settled someone’s mind on a certain situation they were having trouble with or a question they just couldn’t get out of their head. 

On the flip side, Mack mentioned that they can get pretty tired, because readings take up a lot of energy. They also feel they aren’t the best at social interaction, and so on top of the reading sapping their energy, they also need to recharge their social battery. The last downside Mack could think of is some people have a certain stigma against tarot cards, but they want people to know that they have no plans to force their beliefs on anyone, and their only goal is to open up others to the possibilities the universe has to offer.

One change Mack realized she had to make was forcing herself to take breaks so she wasn’t walking around with low energy all the time. She also realized she had to stop giving friends free readings as it was costing her business.

Do they have an Instagram business account? How’s it looking?


Mack doesn’t have a business account and simply allows people to message him on his personal account. His reasoning being he’s a bit too busy to manage it.

Gray Sells Trinkets – Gray Tejada

Gray sells an array of keychains with cute adornments. 

What are their prices?

$10 per keychain

Gray started this business to make money, get themself used to the idea of business in general, and to have fun. Gray doesn’t really have anything they dislike about their business, however they’ve mentioned that their favorite part is seeing reviews for their products and when everything is all packaged and ready for delivery.

Their main challenge is collecting all of the components for the products so they can sell, and Gray said setting up online payment methods was a struggle as they’ve never done it before. Gray reports that they had everything planned out before creating their business so things have been running smoothly. 

Do they have an Instagram business account? How’s it looking?


Mentions their full name, what they sell and their main account. Several pictures of completed orders, customer reviews, and prices are mentioned under posts.