Topeka teen channels art skills through balloon art business

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TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT)– A Topeka girl started her balloon art business at just the age of 10. Channeling her artistic abilities in ways you wouldn’t believe.

Santana Holbert is a 17-year-old business owner. She makes things like crowns, dogs and even dresses out of balloons.

“It’s a way to make a kid happy,” Santana said. “No matter what. A kid could be happy with just one balloon dog.”

She picked up balloon art when she was four years old. She took a break, then picked it up again at 10. First, getting her practice at Via Pizzeria making balloons for anyone dining in. Then growing her art by attending conventions and learning from others.

“It just started off of that,” Santana said. “People started asking me for birthday parties, and I would go, ‘I don’t know!’ I never talked. I was so shy.”

With her mom’s help, she started Santana Balloons. Making different balloon art pieces for anyone who asks.

“As a parent, you should be all in,” Stacie Torrez said, Santana’s mom and right-hand woman. “Take them to those conventions and help them grow in that field.”

For Santana, it’s more than just colorful latex. It’s a passion for her to express art in a unique form, especially at such a young age.

“Yes, I’m 17,” Santana said. “And yes it’s only balloons. But we are creative. We can make anything. It’s an art. It’s a passion. It’s creativity, it’s everything.”

From something as simple as a balloon dog to balloon dresses that take five hours, Santana wants people to know each balloon is made with heart and dedication.

Santana wants to travel around with her balloon art, and learn from others. So far she’s been to Las Vegas, all the way to Florida.

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