Most students struggle balancing school, sports and other extracurriculars, but sophomore Norah Wagoner owns and runs her own business in addition to her other commitments. Twist by W is a jewelry brand that was created in August 2016 by Norah and her sister Lily Wagoner. Lily graduated from Pace in May 2019 and began school at Auburn University this fall. Norah has stepped up, managing Twist by W by herself in Lily’s absence. “It has been a big shift with more responsibility but we have definitely adjusted well and are still adjusting,” said Norah.
Lily decided to create Twist by W after running out of time to get a birthday gift. “Lily needed a gift for a friend and she couldn’t get in touch with a local jewelry designer so we decided to start making our own,” said Norah. The business has grown from there. Norah and Lily created an Instagram account to promote their jewelry, posting for the first time on Aug. 12, 2016. Two years later, they have posted over 500 times and have gained more than 1,000 followers on the account. “We have definitely grown the company through giveaways on our Instagram,” said Norah.
Twist by W giveaways usually consist of handmade jewelry, sometimes including other goods such as Kylie Jenner lip kits. The giveaway that included the Kylie Jenner makeup racked up 457 comments and 530 likes. Giveaways bring increased engagement on Instagram and help the Wagoner sisters advertise their goods. “We mostly advertise through social media and friends,” said Norah.
Norah’s favorite part of Twist by W is watching her friends wear and enjoy jewelry that she has made. “It’s pretty encouraging when I walk into school and see my friends wearing necklaces that Lily and I have designed,” said Norah. Each piece of jewelry is named after friends of the Wagoner sisters and is designed by Lily and Norah.
“Lily and I hand make all of our pieces,” said Norah. “Depending on the necklace it can take anywhere from 20 minutes to an hour.” They have some basic pieces of jewelry, but Norah explained that “there are also more complex pieces, for sure.”
As a student entrepreneur, Norah’s life is filled with planning trunk shows and preparing for events like the Pace Fall Fair. Combined with her schoolwork and other responsibilities, it can be a difficult juggling act. “It is very hard balancing [everything] but it has helped me with time management,” said Norah. Norah’s mom, Deborah Wagoner, helps Norah manage the business by advertising to friends. “My mom always gives out our cards, so she definitely promotes us a lot,” said Norah.
Twist by W participates in different events around Atlanta to gain exposure for their brand. This September, Lily and Norah hosted a pop-up shop at an open house in Atlanta, and every year they have a tent at the Pace Fall Fair. “I bought a necklace from Twist by W last year at the Fall Fair and I’ve loved it so much,” said junior Emily Butler. “Their jewelry is really good quality.”
Lily and Norah have done all they can to make shopping for Twist by W jewelry as easy as possible. They created their own Twist by W website with shipping options available. Junior Caroline Janki purchased a necklace for her sister’s birthday online. “It was really easy to buy jewelry off of their website even if you are looking for a present super last minute,” said Janki.
Top Photo: (L-R) Sisters Norah and Lily Wagoner promote their jewelry through Instagram photos. Photo: Norah Wagoner