Small Business Startup: The Mason Jar

Lynette Thayer, owner of The Mason Jar, poses for a portrait outside the store along Riverside Drive in Clayton.


Lynette Thayer has worked as a bookkeeper throughout her career and it wasn’t until one of her clients decided to sell their business that she gave owning her own a thought.  

     “It was completely by coincidence. I had been doing the books for the previous owner and she called and asked if I could get the books together and that she wanted to sell the store,” said Thayer. “That was on a Thursday and I think by Tuesday I had decided that I wanted to buy the business.” 

     She continued that being a business owner had never crossed her mind. 

     “To be honest, I wouldn’t have even thought of owning my own business had I not worked here a couple of times. I thought it was fun, so like I said, this is truly my fun thing to do,” she said.  

     The Mason Jar, located on Riverside Drive in Clayton, is a rustic, farmhouse decor-themed home goods store that has both river-and-lake themed items. The store originally opened in 2016 under the previous owner and Thayer purchased it in August of 2018.  

    Still employed with her full-time position, Thayer says that owning The Mason Jar has been a fun outlet for her, with busy days during the summer season and the enjoyment of being able to create her own mason jar candles to sell at the store.  

     “I make my own candles and the customers absolutely love them; they sell year-round,” she said. “The prior owner started making her own and when I took over, I started to make them as well. That’s one of the fun aspects of the store; when I need a break from day-to-day things, I can do that, and I even recruited my mother to help me as well.” 

     But it’s not just the candles that are a big selling item for Thayer. The store is filled with the brand Mud Pie, a home decor line that includes children’s items, clothing and purses, dishware and more.  

     Since taking over the store in August, Thayer says she has been extremely busy with the tourism traffic in downtown Clayton that has been steadily increasing over the past couple years. She hopes to stay open even throughout the winter on a Friday, Saturday, Sunday basis.  

     “I had totally underestimated the response to the store being open. People coming in absolutely love it, which makes me happy,” she said.  

    In the future, Thayer would like to expand the store to have a more online presence with an online shopping experience and even to start a blog that both customers and local residents can enjoy.  

     “The Clayton community is amazing and you always need to remember where you come from,” she said.  “They are all the ones who stand behind me, and that means more to me than anything.” 

~Holly Boname