Cherry Frequency sells designer clothing and art, and works with local artists and fashion designers to sell their creations.
It all started when Danielle Schultz couldn't find anything she liked while shopping for a prom dress.
"I just wanted to be an individual and have my own thing going for me, and just stand out," she said.
So Schultz, with her mother, Julie Schultz, and sister, Natalie Schultz, designed her own prom dress, and that was the origin of their alternative fashion business, first online and now with a retail location at Fiesta Mall. Cherry Frequency sells designer clothing and art, and works with local artists and fashion designers to sell their creations.
The store features an eclectic atmosphere, and functions as both a store and art gallery.
Julie Schultz and her daughters, both Mesa High School graduates, run the business.
"I never really thought it was going to develop into something so big and so cool," Danielle Schultz said.
Before Cherry Frequency, the family owned and operated a small retail business in Chandler called Upscale Yard Sale.
"My husband wanted it to be in direct competition with Wal-Mart," Julie Schultz said. "Because we have contacts in the community with liquidation operators, we were able to get in large amounts of name-brand items and offer them to the public at reduced prices. We did that for a couple of years and it just didn't fly, so my husband went into real estate and I stayed home and took care of the kids."
Schultz and her daughters then started Cherry Frequency online, selling their own creations, and the business was doing well until the recession hit.
"At that point all sales pretty much kind of ceased to be," she said. "And when my husband, because he was in real estate, hit that same wall, we put our heads together and said 'what do we do from here to make ends meet?' And that's when we came up with this idea."
The family then decided to open a retail location and leased a space inside Fiesta Mall. They had been selling their own items online, but didn't have enough to stock an entire store, she said.
"We knew a lot of people who were also artists and designers we talked to them and basically the store is full of consignment from local artists and local fashion designers," Schultz said.
The store opened two weeks ago, and business has been slow, but the family is confident business will be picking up in the months leading up to the holidays.
"It was kind of slow during September so we just have to keep ourselves busy and listen to loud music so we have fun all day," said Natalie Schultz. "It's nice to work somewhere you feel comfortable and happy."
A lot of people have no idea what's in store for them when they walk in, Julie Schultz said. Numerous artists and clothing designers have their works displayed in individual areas across the store.
"We get some people who come into the store who were just walking by, and they take a look inside because they see the art. More often than not, they are shocked that everything is done locally," she said. "There's a lot of talent out there that is going untapped."
The business is planning numerous events to drum up business, including parasol painting, fashion shows, body painting, and classes in which local fashion designers will teach people how to create their own designs.
"At least two or three times a month we'll have events in the store, which will bring more people in as well," Julie Schultz said.
The family would love to expand the business to include other locations, but for now it's one day at a time.
"Expanding our line is our first priority and hopefully getting the other fashion designers to expand their lines as well," Schultz said.