She’s a Tech Chick

Missouri teen Taylor Burghard designs jewelry from recycled computer parts for her business, TekChick Designs

Sep 14, 2011 | By Kelli Plasket

This tech chick means business. Taylor Burghard, 13, grew up around technology in her parents’ computer shop. She even helped her dad make a sale when she was just 2 years old: she showed a customer how easy it was to use a computer. Now, the middle schooler has her own tech-inspired business: TekChick Designs. “We recycle old computer pieces and turn them into jewelry,” she told TFK.

Taylor displays her jewelry, which is made from keyboard keys, memory hardware and other computer parts.
MARGRETT ANDREWS
Taylor Burghard displays her jewelry, which is made from keyboard keys, memory hardware and other computer parts.

The jewelry line features earrings made from keyboard keys that spell out fun phrases, such as “I – CTRL (control key) – U,” “M – Y – option (option key)” and “G – R – 8 - M – O – M.” Taylor also makes necklaces and colorful brooches using computer memory devices like RAM, and other computer parts.

Fashionable Tech

The idea for the jewelry line came to Taylor in April, when her parents held a computer art contest during a recycling drive at their store, MacXprts-Columbia, in Missouri. As she was popping keys out of a keyboard, she grabbed a hook and started spelling out phrases to make earrings. Employees in the shop loved her idea.

Taylor sells her jewelry online at tekchickdesigns.com, in her parent’s store, and in a California toy store where her aunt works as a buyer. Taylor’s friends buy her jewelry for gifts and request custom earrings. The young entrepreneur recently signed a contract with a computer parts distributor called Dr. Bott to help sell her products nationwide. “When people buy (the jewelry), it makes me feel so happy—it’s like saying that they like my idea,” she says.

Taylor says she’s also happy to have found a way to help recycle old computers and reduce electronic waste. Her dad even put out a call to other Apple-brand computer dealers to send their old keyboards and computer parts to the store for Taylor to use. Through TekChick Designs, Taylor is learning how to deal with contracts, manage inventory and handle other aspects of running a business. She has three goals: “I want to help pay for college, learn about business and have fun,” she says. This teen is in CTRL!

Click here to read tips on starting your own business.