SMALL BUSINESS

Pair of young entrepreneurs open downtown shops

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Lilly Wallace and Demi Haas aren’t just the newest business owners in downtown Crawfordsville. They’re also the youngest.

Maive’s Boutique, Wallace’s women’s fashion store, and djh esthetics and brows, Haas’s beauty establishment, have opened in the newly-remodeled Weemickle Building, 115 N. Green St.

Wallace is a junior at North Montgomery High School and Haas graduated from Crawfordsville High School in 2020. The businesses had been sharing space in Haas’s studio at Stone Creek Lodge when the building formerly housing Dr. Richard Elghammer’s psychology practice went on the market.

Wallace launched Maive’s online when she was 15 and built up her clientele through social media. The store carries clothing in sizes XXS to 3XL and hopes to eventually carry children’s and baby clothing.

“We carry fashion that caters to, like, tweens and teenagers all the way up to something like your fashionable grandma would wear,” she said during a ribbon-cutting ceremony organized by the Crawfordsville/Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce.

“I like the idea of catering a fashionable wardrobe to everyone,” she added.

Haas is a licensed esthetician, microblading artist and makeup artist who started her business in December inside Stone Creek’s bridal suite. She was inspired to join the profession by watching YouTube videos from other artists.

“This is a big dream of mine. It’s coming true,” Haas said.

The business offers facials, massages, waxing, hand and foot treatments, microblading, lash lifting and other services. Hours are by appointment only. Appointments can be booked through Facebook at Djh esthetics and brows.

Wallace and Haas are part of a growing community of younger entrepreneurs setting up shop in Crawfordsville’s central business district. Maxine’s on Green, Francis & Mount and Simply Rebellious are among downtown establishments opened by the next generation of business owners.

“It’s just brought a lot of enthusiasm to the downtown experience, to the downtown community because it really is a community of small businesses and entrepreneurs and they just help each other so much,” said Sue Lucas, program manager for Crawfordsville Main Street.

A 2018 survey by Junior Achievement and Ernst & Young LLP found that 41% of teens would consider entrepreneurship as a career compared to a traditional job.

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