Interview with Florence, the founder of Sweet Pamplemousse

Interview with Florence, the founder of Sweet Pamplemousse

This week, we went to meet Florence Rozensztajn, the founder of Sweet Pamplemousse: a store of bilingual educational games and personalized posters for children.

Sweet Pamplemousse

Designer graphique

Articles pour bébés/enfants

Boutique de décoration

Who is behind Sweet Pamplemousse?

(Florence Rozensztajn) "Ahah! It's just me ! My name is Florence, I am 40 years old and I grew up in a small village in Normandy. After graduating high school, I went to study in Rennes, Brittany, where after years of hard work (!) I obtained my architect DPLG diploma.

I first went to Basel, Switzerland, to learn the ropes and this experience has brought me a lot. My plan was to go to Berlin to work and deepen my basics in German. But that was the time when I met with my future husband who just left France to settle in London! I changed my plans and crossed the Channel to join him. And I have no regrets, London is a city that I like and where I feel at home."

Sweet Pamplemousse, what is it?

(Florence) "Sweet Pamplemousse is like my third baby. It started with the need to find a way to communicate with my son with suitable bilingual support - and that I found pleasing to the eye! I am sensitive to graphics and I could not find anything that gave me full satisfaction!

The first product I created was the bilingual alphabet: cards with words that start with the same letter in English and French. But also a series of cards with the photos of our loved ones and their first names written below. In the evening, I would take out a few cards for him so that he could observe them, handle them, recognise the letters. From there, a whole series of cards were born, then personalised posters and finally postcards."

Why "Sweet Pamplemousse"?

(Florence) "That's a good question! I wanted a name that reminds me of childhood with one word in English and one in French. Not easy to combine the two!

The word Sweet seemed obvious to me.

For Pamplemousse, I was in a home store, looking at a shelf full of books, I noticed the book titles with names of aromatic herbs: Rosemary, Basil, etc. Only one word. I don't know why, I thought of the word "pamplemousse" (grapefruit in english). It's anecdotal but I like the sound of this word. The pink colour of grapefruit and its sour taste reminds me of sweets, which take me back to childhood. But maybe it's just me who feels that way! : D"

Why London?

(Florence) "For my husband, and first and foremost because I love London! It is a cosmopolitan and welcoming city where anything seems possible. People are open and give you a chance. There is always plenty to do (if you put the Covid period aside) and I love discovering new things. I particularly like galleries, cafes but also gardens and urban spaces."

Not too difficult to combine family life and entrepreneurship?

(Florence) "Combining family and entrepreneurial life is like trying to assemble a puzzle whose pieces do not always fit together!

The result is often other than what was expected but we always succeed, we adapt. We are flexible. I chose this path because I wanted to spend more time with my children. It's not always perfect, but I think I can do more with them now than when I were a full-time employee."

How did you find your first clients?

(Florence) "My first clients (feminine!) are my friends. French mothers like me, living in London. People sensitive to my graphic identity and my message. Many are loyal customers and give some of my items to friends and family. This means a lot to me and I take this opportunity to thank them!"

Did the health crisis linked to Covid-19 and Brexit have an impact on your activity?

(Florence) "The Covid-19 has turned my goals upside down and my way of developing my business.

Mainly because I had to start homeschooling. I was very keen to spend the time with the children, after all, they are my priority. I therefore decided to close the shop during the successive lockdowns in order to limit the round trips to the post office for example and to free time for the kids. However, it also allowed me to develop new digital products that can reach people all over the world!

Regarding Brexit, I recently made the decision to suspend my deliveries to Europe and focus on the United Kingdom."

Your future plans for Sweet Pamplemousse?

(Florence) "A lot! I would especially like to make myself known more locally, in particular to independent businesses and collaborate with other entrepreneurs. I find that we can help each other and offer interesting offers when there are several of us, with different backgrounds. I like the exchange of ideas and I miss working with a team!"

Any advice for a budding entrepreneur?

(Florence) "I think you shouldn't hesitate to talk about it, meet new people - you never know who will be able to give you a great tip or a helping hand. And above all: do not hesitate to ask for help! I am still on that path myself, these are tips that I give myself every day.

And a big thank you to AllTrippers (and in particular Charlotte) for giving me the opportunity to express myself differently!"