Can you tell us a little about yourself? / What inspired you to start Fruitstrology?
We are Rachel (right) and Sarah Stanton (left), twin-preneurs. We first stepped into an urban garden during freshman year of college. We had no idea these lush, vegetable-filled patches of land existed in between city blocks, but it was magical.
We’ve always been passionate about all things entrepreneurship, learning to screen print from our grandfather and starting a tie-dye company in high school. When we got to college (Temple University) we co-founded Fruitstrology, a one-for-one clothing line that donates fruit to children in Philadelphia for every product sold.
The inspiration for Fruitstrology grew from that fruitful green garden right off Temple’s campus, where we volunteered. After school, the local children would come to the garden to learn how to grow their own fruits/vegetables. The garden sustained the surrounding neighborhood with fresh produce, but we learned that for many other children, access to produce was scarce, since Philadelphia is considered a food desert (meaning it has very few supermarkets and they are largely inaccessible.) Wanting to provide fresh fruit to more children across Philadelphia, we started screen printing “fruit tees” and selling them with the mission of donating fruit and alleviating food deserts.
What exactly is Fruitstrology? / How did you come up with the name?
Fruitstrology is a one-for-one lifestyle clothing brand that donates fruit to children in Philadelphia for every product sold. We believe in the power of sharing, doing good for our community, and that every child deserves unrestricted access to nutritious meals. The line includes men’s and women’s screen printed tees, tanks and bags with fruit themes based loosely on astrology, where people can pick the fruit that most reflects their personality. We blended together the concepts of “fruit” and “astrology” to create “Fruitstrology”.
Where are your products sold? Are they sold in stores?
Right now, we sell online and at events around Philly, although we’re working on expanding into some independent boutiques.
Is there a favorite product?
If we absolutely had to choose, we’d say the Independent Pineapple tank top is our fav because the pineapple was the very first design that started it all! After rendition upon rendition we landed on a sketched, hand-drawn looking Pineapple which set the tone/design for the other fruits.
What is your favorite part about running Fruitstrology?
Connecting with people, whether it’s customers or the children we’re supporting, it’s the core of our business and it never gets old. We love traveling to different events/urban gardens listening to people’s stories and what it means to them to have a healthy balanced diet or to learn to garden for the first time.
You believe everyone is a different combination of fruit, can you share with us what the different fruits stand for?
Just as astrology tells us horoscopes, your Fruitstrology fruit represents your personality traits. We have 8 different fruit personalities so far, but we plan to grow more each season. Each fruit has one distinct characteristic, but you may find that you’re a fruit salad:
Sarah is most definitely the Talkative Grape, Rachel is the Easy-going Banana, and you or your friend may be the Active Orange, Smart Apple, Ambitious Coconut, Independent Pineapple, Funny Pear or Charismatic Peach.
Check out our website for the full fruit personality descriptions!
With every purchase you give fresh fruit to children in Philadelphia, can you tell us about that?
Yes! We work with Philadelphia’s largest food bank, Philabundance, supporting their KidsBites program, to distribute the fruit. To date, over 1,000 servings of fruit have been donated. We also support urban gardens, like the Life Do Grow farm in North Philadelphia, where we give the local children and young adults the resources to sustainably run a fruit & vegetable garden on their own.
How do you spread the word about your company?
We do traditional online marketing through social media, mainly Instagram as well as events at urban gardens, restaurants and other businesses with similar missions where we can set up a table and connect with people. Word of mouth is key!
Do you have any advice for fellow entrepreneurs?
We have a few pieces of advice for our fellow entrepreneurs: First, remember to step back once in a while and celebrate the small accomplishments, it’s important to feel success, especially on the rollercoaster that is running a company. Second, one person cannot do everything, so leverage a team, or technology and experts in different facets of business to streamline activities. Third, never stop learning about your business and industry and testing out new strategies. Lastly, you learn the most from your failures and struggles, so embrace them, they propel you forward in ways that make you more resilient than ever.