June 17, 2019 | 78° F

Rutgers student entrepreneur turns nail art trends into business


Courtesy of Adina Krama |Adina draws her inspiration for nail art from Instagram and people she encounters. In the past, she has done designs such as pumpkins, snowflakes and chevron stripes and constantly finds new ideas for different patterns.

They say inspiration gives no warning, so it is best to always be prepared. Adina Kramer, a junior in the Rutgers Business School, was struck with a bolt of genius soon after beginning work at the information desk of the Sonny Werblin Recreation Center on Busch campus. 

Tasked with welcoming in the athletically enthusiastic masses by scanning their student ID cards, Kramer found herself receiving more compliments on her unusually detailed nail art than the number of swipe cards she handled. 

“‘Oh my gosh — where do you get your nails done? I want them! I need them!’” Kramer said with a laugh, recalling the hoards of girls en-route to workout who couldn’t get enough of the tricolor checker board, glitter plumes and exquisite flower prints that adorned her fingertips. 

The compliments were nothing new for Kramer, who has been praised for her cosmetic creativity for as long as she could remember. Nail design always intrigued her, and she has been experimenting with exquisitely intricate patterns on her own nails since high school.

Family and friends were delighted when Kramer officially decided to advance her passion and turn her talents into a profitable venture. 

“Designs by Adina” launched on Facebook on Oct. 20 and began to serve as an online business platform for Kramer. Clients can scroll through a photomontage, similar to Tumblr, then contact Kramer via phone. An on-campus meeting location will then be arranged, and that is where the authentically custom manicure will take place. 

The only requirement for clients is they must arrive with their nails cut and filed. Kramer can take it from there. With a fully stocked set of nail polish and thin brushes, similar to the tools of a professional, Kramer swirls away with chevron stripes, pumpkins and snowflakes. The cost of her manicure session is only $8. 

Kramer finds joy in nail designing, as it allows her to channel her artistic vision while making others happy. 

“I like the creativity of it, the constant trying to find new ideas and new designs, …[especially] seeing the ideas that people have when they show me pictures,” she said. 

She draws the majority of her inspiration from photos she views on Instagram or just people on the street. 

“Designs by Adina” had its first successful event on campus last Monday. However, her first large-scale recognition event took place in her 450-person Intro to Management lecture class.

“We were broken up into small groups working on a project, and the professor was walking around asking if any of us were entrepreneurs in real life,” Kramer said. “I said yes and was the only one who stood in front of my 450 classmates to talk about it!”

Attracting 197 likes on the Facebook page and a fruitful few weeks of business, Kramer looks forward to watching her business flourish and having fun along the way. Kramer advises aspiring entrepreneurs to take the plunge and embrace the possibilities.

“Just go for it — don’t be scared!” she said.

When it comes to the future, “Designs by Adina” has its sights set on breaking into the markets of high school students, birthday parties and sorority date nights. With affordable prices, flexible scheduling and a particular expertise in French manicures, she will surely “nail” it.  

Janine Puhak

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