CLEARWATER, Fla. - A young woman with Down syndrome has taken her creative business to the next level.
Maxine Simeone makes custom jewelry like headbands and hair clips. It usually takes her about 30 minutes to do it.
She recently asked a locally-owned shop if she could sell her creations inside -- and they said, “yes.” Now, you can find her accessories, under her brand, “Sparkles by Maxine,” at a Clearwater store called the Poolside, which is located in the Shoppes on Sand Key.
“I just have a special place in my heart for young people -- young people who have to struggle in live to make something of themselves and here we are helping her,” explained a representative from “Poolside. "It kind of gives me goosebumps. It makes me so proud to be able to give her this opportunity -- and she deserves it.”
Maxine was born with Down syndrome but tapped into her creativity by making custom jewelry, which is sold at a Clearwater store, and online. (FOX 13 News)
Simeone also has a website where you can order her accessories . Her business is growing, thanks in part to the organization, HUG, which stands for “Help Us Gather.” The non-profit helps those with disabilities get opportunities like Simeone. A little more than 19 percent of people with disabilities are employed, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics.
“[It’s] so awesome…and people love my hairbands. Wear them with your clothes, holidays -- you'll like [them],” Simeone told FOX 13. "I’ll make you so fabulous.”
LINK: You can find her "Sparkles by Maxine" accessories by visiting her website.
'Sparkles by Maxine' is sold online and at Poolside in Clearwater. (FOX 13 News)
These are a few of the headbands that Maxine Simeone created. She said it takes her about 30 minutes to make one. (FOX 13 News)