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Meet Tara Nesbitt of CandyHairedDollz in San Pedro

Today we’d like to introduce you to Tara Nesbitt.

Tara, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
The creation of CandyHairedDollz originally started out as a hobby in 1996 while I was attending Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville. I made my first dolls for my Sorority Sisters (Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.) as a Neophyte gift. I then decided to use this as a side “hustle” for other Sororities, family, and friends. As time went on, I moved away from creating dolls due to life changes and other demands which helped me to mature into an adult.

I was given the opportunity to have my “Dollz” displayed in a local business store, “Local Lucy’s.” This was the start of my college hobby becoming renewed and revised. I began to advertise more and decided to start creating again. I later became more interested in the idea of sharing this entrepreneurial experience with my high school students and decided to use this a tool to teach economic development, opportunity, and entrepreneurship. This has led me to a more purposeful calling which is to offer my students a chance to become investors in a startup business and provide for them a chance to develop into young entrepreneurs. I have incorporated social media (Facebook) into the learning experience in order to relate and fully engage students in a movement that can continue to have a positive outcome on their lives.

I am now teaching young Entrepreneurs hands on, how to manage and operate a business, CandyHairedDollz, in which they can be a part of too. I found my purpose as an educator and want to give back to my students in a way that will create opportunities for economic growth, financial stability, and an alternative means of gaining wealth within their communities as well as in their own personal lives.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Not exactly. Starting a business can be rather challenging especially when you only meant to provide service to a small market. I had to focus more on fully establishing the business and figuring out how to gain monetary support for its operation. The paperwork, process and waiting to be “relevant” were a bit overwhelming too.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the CandyHairedDollz story. Tell us more about the business.
My business is a Creative and Fun way to bring back on Old School Novelty trend. I have created many dolls out of own creative thoughts, and then of those who want specially made dollz.

Although many customers say they just want to admire these dollz and collect them, some find themselves enjoying my “sweeties” as a treat.

I specialize in creating dollz out of my customer’s old school and/or new school “penny” candy favorites. I enjoy making these dollz as well as seeing the faces of my customers when they receive them.

I am most proud of how many “likes” and “followers” I have on Facebook. I never would have imagined that so many people would be interested in what I still consider to be my past time hobby.

Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
Luck has played a very important role in my business because due to my CandyHairedDollz Facebook page, I have been placed in a position to establish more customers as well as potential business opportunities.


  • Each doll is priced at $45 and that does not include shipping and handling. Special orders are $55 dollars depending on the detail of the order

Contact Info:

Image Credit:

All of my family and friends who’ve ever allowed me to use their homes, cars, and personal dwellings for photo shoots and varied backgrounds. Thank YOU!

Getting in touch: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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