I'm so thrilled to have partnered with Orange Harp, a fantastic new company from San Francisco founded by Kacie Gonzalez and Anbu Anbalagapandian (pictured below, respectively). Orange Harp is an app-based shopping destination for beautifully designed socially-conscious products.
As COO, Kacie Gonzalez scours the USA looking for entrepreneurs whose American-made products who will positively contribute to Orange Harp's mission. She recently invited me on board, and I am thrilled to have my eco-friendly handmade jewelry featured in their app. I had the opportunity to learn more about the inspiration behind Orange Harp and Kacie herself in the interview below.
Laurie Lynn: What inspired Orange Harp’s creation?
Kacie: We created Orange Harp to solve the time-consuming and often frustrating experience of searching for conscious products. Whole Foods has done an incredible job bringing more awareness to local and organic foods, and we wanted to build something that did the same for fashion, personal care, and accessories. We believe that what goes on our bodies is just as important as what goes in them. After all, we live our life in them!
What’s been the best part of co-founding a socially-responsible and eco-friendly company?
There are many exciting things, but I’d have to say the most exciting for me has been knowing that we are building a product that is providing an outlet for brands changing the world to showcase their work. In turn, we have the potential to change the world through them.
What’s been the most difficult part of starting your own company?
Lack of resources. When you are a scrappy startup like we are, you need to quickly learn a lot of skills you never thought you’d have to learn. Bigger companies have so many resources and employees to facilitate growth, but at the same time it’s a great learning experience. If you want something done you not only need to do it yourself, you need to learn it!
Why did you decide to make Orange Harp an app-based shopping experience, instead of web-based?
My co-founder Anbu is a mobile engineering genius so that helps. She built the beautiful product you see. Mobile first was always our strategy from the beginning. More and more consumers are feeling comfortable enough to shop on their phones, and we always look to be ahead of the curve. Mobile clearly isn’t going away, and we wanted to be at its forefront.
Is there any particular type of product that you’ve wanted to include in your app but have had trouble finding an ethical and eco-friendly version?
It’s been very difficult finding well-crafted, stylish, and ethical shoes.
What is your favorite purchase so far from Orange Harp?
Oh, that is such a tough question. I love all my purchases! I’m a Southern girl living in California, so my Texas Home-T gets a lot of wear. I love dressing it down with my burnt orange Mitscoots socks and sneakers, or pairing it with skinny jeans, a black blazer, and heels.
Thanks so much to Kacie for this interview, and Orange Harp for inviting Beryllina to join them. Here's to a long and fruitful partnership!!
Download the Orange Harp app in the iTunes App store to check out Beryllina jewelry and other American-made socially-conscious products!