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  • "How We Make Stuff Now" is Launched!

    I wrote a book. It's called "How We Make Stuff Now" and I've been asked by many why I wrote it. There are two simple reasons. First, to help the next generation of Makers learn from the last. Second, to claim the expertise and authority that we have worked so hard to assemble at Grommet.  There literally is no book like this on the market–not even close.

    "How We Make Stuff Now" is based on almost 11 years of hard-won knowledge and learnings about the product development landscape from seeing 300 products a week and launching over 3,000 of them. From prototypes and patents to manufacturing and logistics. We earned our credibility the old-fashioned way.

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  • Earth Day isn't for us

    There’s a scene in Mad Men in which Don Draper, his wife, and kids are having a picnic and soaking in a gorgeous sunny day. It’s a picturesque view of the vintage American family. As they ready to leave, Don throws his empty beer can into the field. His wife, Betty, follows suit shaking out the trash-covered blanket before they drive away. End scene.

    Were this a 2019 portrait of family perfection, the Drapers would’ve collected what little trash they did generate — a wrapper or two and the beer can— and found a proper receptacle to dispose of it. But their actions in the show are a subtle nod to the way things were just 50 years ago when an 'ecological footprint' was a nonsense phrase. 

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  • 6 Tools to Make You a Better Gardener

    The sun is shining, the birds are chirping, and the biting cold is warming into a temperate bliss. Spring is here. If you’re a green thumb, you’ve probably thought ahead about your garden game plan and now that the ground is thawing, you can put that plan into action with the help of these Grommets.

     

    gardening tools: MaxBit garden hole digging drill bit

    Maxbit - Garden Hole Digging Drill Bit

    Digging a hole can be tedious, but MaxBit makes it simple and satisfying. The drill bit is perfectly sized for planting seedlings and bulbs. You can’t help but feel a little cool as you easily prep your garden for plants in a matter of minutes.

    Shop Now - $39.95+

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  • Meet the Makers: Kara Dyer & Sara Argue of Storytime Toys

    Technology is entrenched in our lives. It makes things easier, more efficient. It streams endless entertainment and knowledge in seconds. But with unfiltered access comes the need for a filter. We put our phones away at dinner and close laptops in meetings. As with any stimulant, moderation becomes the name of the game.

    That game is an especially tricky one for parents to play. In a world increasingly reliant on technology, how do you expose kids to the right amount while also using more hands-on, even screen-free, methods of learning?

     
    That question is one of the reasons we visited and profiled Makers Kara Dyer and Sara Argue of Storytime Toys for our Meet the Maker series. It's a question at the heart of their work helping young children develop the foundations of critical-thinking, problem-solving, and imaginative play with no technology at all.

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  • Mother's Day Gift Guide: 10+ Presents For Mom Besides Flowers

    How do you find the right unique Mother's Day gift? The only way we know how is to find a gift that speaks uniquely to your mom. What do they like to do every day? How do they spend their time? Are they chopping it up in the kitchen? Unwinding with a book? Tending to a bountiful garden? No matter their interests, we are here to help you find the right gift.

    For the Sentimental Mom

    2019 mother's day gift guide: Kitras Tree of Enchantment ornament

    Kitras - Tree of Enchantment Ornament

    Like trees in a forest, no two of these beautiful hand-blown glass ornaments are alike. Each ornament has a special story card with a sentiment for its theme and comes ready to give in a gift box. Whether mom places them on a counter or hangs them up, when the sunlight hits these delicate orbs they give off a lovely, colorful light.

    Shop Now - $22.95

    2019 mother's day gift guide: North Country Wind Bells buoy bells

    North Country Wind Bells - Buoy Bells

    Mom can enjoy the sound of the sea at home with a buoy bell. Each bell is carefully made to recreate the distinctive chime from various buoy bell locations along both coasts. The bells are made in Maine from recycled steel and built to last for at least 20 years of sea-inspired sound.

    Shop Now - $44.95

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  • 7 Ways to Make Spring Cleaning Fun

    After being cooped up all winter, what's a better way to get ready for summer than the difficult but soul-cleansing ritual of spring cleaning? For anyone like us who looked around and audibly gulped at the amount of house prep you need to tackle before the dog days of summer comes 'round, have no fear!  We know just how to help make the spring cleaning ritual a little easier.

     

    spring cleaning tips: Glider magnetic window cleaner

    Glider -Magnetic Window Cleaner

    When you open your windows to let that fresh spring air in, you’ll probably realize how gross they are. With Glider, you can clean the outside of your windows from the inside. Super strong earth magnets connect two sides of the cleaner through a window pane making the job of window washing a painless experience.

    Shop Now - $45+

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  • The (March) Madness of Entrepreneurship

    It’s the season of brackets so I filled out my own. Not for the NCAA basketball tournament. That’s easy. Michigan wins, end of bracket. My bracket is one of the skills one needs to succeed as an entrepreneur. Game on.

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  • Meet the Maker: Claire Cheney of Curio Spice Co.

    You know a spice shop when you smell it. The collection of aromas knocks your head back. As we walked into Curio Spice Co. to meet its founder, Claire Cheney, for the latest installment of our Meet the Maker profile series, we collectively suffered whiff-lash.

     

    With each breath, your sense of smell shifts into overdrive, teleporting you around the world in a millisecond. Cambodian peppers, Sri Lankan cinnamon blends, and herbs from local New England farms create a truly sensational experience — one that Claire hopes is brought home to your kitchen. 

    She wants to help cooks of all experience levels be more creative. To wow their friends and family. In fact, she actively encourages it with her own friends and family by giving them spice blends as gifts. More than anything though, she wants you to know these spices and where they came from. The farms, the farmers, the region, and their collective impact on the product in your hand. That’s what impressed us the most. 

    Copyright Danny LeBlanc Photo

    Curio Spice Co. is a Public Benefit Company, a business designed to make a positive impact on society and the environment. That mission touches every aspect of the final product.

    90% of her ingredients are certified organic and half are Fair Trade. This practice works double time by reducing CO2 emissions and meeting labor, social, and environmental standards set by FLOCert, in addition to being a superior product. Even the spice tins and lids are American-made and recyclable to limit their global carbon footprint. 

    Claire sources spices from local farms in regions she’s visited — Vietnam, Greece, Madagascar, Japan — partnering with farmers and producers in the area to ensure the product stems from outside the commodity spice market. She pays more for spices grown responsibly to combat exploitation that's run rampant in spice trading for decades. She also sources from women-owned businesses and spice co-ops contributing to female education and improved livelihoods. 

    She works with farms in her own backyard to ensure a fresher product. She teaches workshops for kids as part of school programs and for the public at her shop. All are focused on teaching them the origin of the spice and the cultural heritage it represents. 

    Curio Spice Co. has products with stories upon stories behind each. We’re thrilled to help Claire share them with you on The Grommet. And we count ourselves lucky that her store is just a 5-minute walk from our office.

    To learn more about Curio Spice Co., shop our entire collection of spice blends and gift sets. 

  • 8 Ways to Elevate Your Next Game Night

    The next time you host a game night or even get invited to one, surprise your friends and family with a game they've never seen. From fast-paced, family-friendly games to takes on old classics to rip-roaring drinking games for the 21 and older crowd. No matter what kind of game you're looking for, we've got something that is going to rule game night.

     

    Fun for the Whole Family
    family game night ideas: BLLOX

    BLLÖX - Block Stacking Game

    BLLÖX block puzzle game amps up the competition—and creativity—at your next family game night. Flip a card and race to build what you see before your opponents can. Want to get silly? A separate deck of cards packed with wacky challenges makes playing this fast-paced game more difficult and more fun.

    Shop Now - $19.95 (Ages 6+)

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  • How to Pack for Your Warm Weather Vacation

    If you’re like us —  swaddled in a blanket and sipping tea after another day of waking at 6:30 to salt the driveway and scrape fresh ice off your car— you’re dreaming of an escape from your frozen abode.  You want to bask in the warmth of a tropical vacation and we want to help. So we’ve put together a handy list of vacation must-haves to take with you.

    You can thank us by taking us with you! Just kidding. Unless you have the room. You’ll barely notice us. :)

     

     

    spring break packing tips: Dock & Bay

    Dock & Bay - Quick-Drying Microfiber Beach Towel  

    Space is sacred when packing for a trip so bringing multiple towels for beach trips is all but out of the question. You need a towel with versatility. One that’s absorbent, fast-drying, and, ideally, isn’t just a sand trap.  The Quick-Drying Microfiber Beach Towel from Dock & Bay is not only sand-resistant but can absorb more than its weight in water then dry three times faster than a traditional cotton towel. With a tightly woven microfiber design, this towel is a quick and easy (not to mention generously-sized) solution to combat the intrusive sand grains, while providing a comfortable, suede-like accessory to bring on vacation.

    Shop Now - $24.95

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