Patriotic Swirl and Pink Sunshine may sound like flavors of ice cream, but they’re actually some of the names given to tie-dyed shirts made by Leah and Zachary McAndrews, who chose the names to give the shirts different personalities.
The siblings, ages 14 and 11 years, respectively, began a small business out of their home in Verona in June, making and selling tie-dyed T-shirts. Leah and Zachary even created a website to sell the shirts and advertised with a yard sign, in addition to posts on Facebook and Nextdoor.
Leah said they have sold 114 shirts so far and have 24 left for sale, but with Verona Area School DIstrict starting classes again next week, it’s time to focus on studies again.
“We are slowing down our business with school coming, but we had a lot of fun starting it and making connections with our customers,” Leah said.
According to their website, the McAndrews’ goal is to “not only sell shirts to people in our community, but to color their lives while doing it.”
Initially, the siblings just wanted to make some fun shirts for the 4th of July for themselves and their parents. But then they decided to form a small business to keep themselves busy and entertained during a socially distanced summer.
They watched YouTube videos to learn how to create patterns and make the colors more vibrant, learning techniques such as the “rainbow crinkle.”
They created their first shirts with patriotic colors for the 4th of July and orange and black to represent the Verona Wildcats. Since then, they have shipped shirts as far as Germany and Australia, with most sold in adult sizes.
Leah and Zachary said they most frequently sell shirts in shades of blue and pink, or sunset color combinations, and for a while, made custom colors and sizes. The dyes used by the duo come in powdered form through Amazon and Target, requiring them to add water to the bottles and squeeze them to dye their shirts.
Leah said she and her brother might make more shirts in the future for certain times of the year. They make the shirts in batches and each batch creates around 30 shirts.
The siblings are putting the money they earn into a savings account.
“Tie-dyed Shirts are hand-dyed and each is unique and different from one another,” their website states. “No two shirts are alike and that is what makes our business stand out from other corporate clothing stores.”