I don’t know about you, but for me studying is a full-time job. It is probably even more than a full-time job, just without the payment. However, during my past year in Groningen, I’ve crossed paths with some amazing people who somehow managed to start their own businesses while studying! So I kick off this post with a virtual round of applause, lots of respect, appreciation and, as the Dutch would say, a schouderklopje. The next two posts will be all about them and their inspiring ideas. From delicious food and coffee, over fashion and nail arts, to custom made jewellery, we’ve got it all covered!
Anouck is the living proof that Covid has had a few positive aspects as well. During the last spring, she and her friends bought some beads and her first necklace turned out to be a real stunner. Since she has never done anything crafty beforehand, turning it into a business was a rather random idea but a full success! Now she is selling bracelets, necklaces and waist beads in all colours and styles. For her, the best aspect about it is that it’s either all custom made or something she creates out of the blue. So if you wanna pick your own beads or you simply want a surprise inspired by Anouck’s artsy mastermind, go and check out her Instagram! (@anoucksbeads) And no worries, your bank account will hardly even notice.
Yutzu moved last summer from Taiwan to Groningen without leaving her passion for baking behind. During the several lockdowns, she brought a little sparkle into her friends’ life by making delicious cakes. That’s why she calls it a “magical food”. At some point, she offered her cakes and desserts via Whatsapp groups and people were thrilled by them. After more and more people ordered, she decided to make it a business and opened an Instagram profile. This profile alone brings foodporn to a whole new level. (@yt_homemade_sweet) There is hardly anything she cannot do! Cakes and cupcakes in all sizes and flavours, picnic boxes, as well as special surprises for holidays. Most unique about her business is probably that she uses a lot of uncommon flavours or even creates new ones. On what other menu could you find a “Stroopwafel-Caramel-Apple-Mousse”- or Bubble Tea-cake? She herself says: “I treat my customers like my friends, and I do become friends with some of them in the end. I like how cake bonds people together, this is more than just a business.”
“If I don’t get into university, I’ll pursue a career as a nail tech. Little did I know, I could do both.” I couldn’t find any better words than her own to introduce you to Victoria; a student and licensed nail artist in Groningen. She has learned good-quality, healthy manicures in a proper course and it quickly became more than just a passion. The actual idea to turn it into a business stemmed from the need to work to afford studying in the Netherlands. We all know the struggle, don’t we? Now she offers manicures, gel nails and plenty of designs which you can admire on her Instagram profile. (@victoria.s.nails) Check her business out if you wanna treat yourself. Then as she says herself, and again I couldn’t say it any better, “When one is so busy with one’s everyday life, being able to find a window once a month to come in, relax and put all worries away can feel like a getaway. I like to think of it as a safe space and do all to help my customers to relax as I take care of their hands. If they feel comfortable, they can share their thoughts and worries with me. Although it is not a therapy session, I believe the whole experience can be therapeutic.”
So, these are the first three student businesses I’ve wanted to share with you. Next time, when you are craving cake, when you wanna have your nails done or you would like to reward yourself with new unique jewellery, think of them. They deserve our support and you deserve the treat! You will hear from me again and it will all be about coffee, curry and fashion!
Written by: Elli Winetsdorfer-Schau