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Mike

Author Archives: Mike

Marketing Specialist at The Grommet

  • Meet the Maker Podcast: Sarah & Anna of Tactile Craftworks

    How do you commemorate your travels? Photos? Videos? Souvenirs? How about etched journals?

    On this episode, we talk to Sarah Kirkham and Anna Warren the creators of Tactile Craftworks. They handcraft and laser cut journals that pay tribute to your favorite city. American-made for a lifetime in Milwaukee, WI, these products have Anna and Sarah’s fingerprints on them from start to finish. If you’re wondering what incredible chemistry between two founders sounds like, this episode is for you.

    Like what you hear? Listen to the rest of the Meet the Maker Podcast series here then rate, review, and subscribe on iTunes.

  • Come Visit Our Pop-up Shop on Newbury St. in Boston

    Newbury Street is a marquee destination in Boston for visitors and residents alike. Lined with 19th-century brownstones, this mile-long street is packed with boutiques, bookstores, shops, salons, and restaurants. Until this week, it was only missing one thing—The Grommet.

    Continue Reading

  • Live Meet the Maker Events at The Grommet Store

    Every day on our site we tell you the story of an innovative product and the brilliant person who made it. We create videos, write blog posts, and record podcasts all in an effort to get you as close to meeting the Maker as possible.

    Now we can really mean it when we say you can meet the Makers behind the products on our site.

    Every weekend in our store at the Natick Mall, our Makers will showcase, demo, and answer questions about their products live and in-person. It's a great way to learn about a product you've had your eye on directly from the person who created it.

    It will be a fun, interactive way to kick off your holiday shopping. As a bonus, the featured Makers' products will be 10% during the event.

    You can RSVP on Facebook and check out the schedule of featured Makers below. Continue Reading

  • Meet the Maker Podcast: Susan Castriota of Cuchina Safe

    Meet the Maker Podcast with Susan Castriota of Cuchina Safe. On this episode, we talk to Susan about how she came up with the business. Susan Castriota, the Maker of Cuchina Safe, creates glass microwave lids and cooking dishes to help people avoid using plastic when cooking.

    The creation of her products stemmed from her breast cancer diagnosis, which could have been a podcast in itself. It caused her to reevaluate the types of consumer products she used in her life. When she learned of the dangers plastics presented when cooking or microwaving, it led to her business. To hear more about that story and how she has handled growing her business, we talk to Susan herself.

    Meet the Maker Podcast with Susan Castriota of Cuchina Safe. On this episode, we talk to Susan about how she came up with the business.

     

    Like what you hear? Listen to the rest of the Meet the Maker Podcast series here then rate, review, and subscribe on iTunes.

  • It's Our 9th Birthday!

    In the last year, we: partnered with Ace Hardware, a relationship that was so successful they acquired a majority stake in The Grommet; launched 336 new products from small businesses around the world; eclipsed 500K social media supporters; opened a pop-up shop on Boston Common then; our first brick and mortar store in the Natick Mall; connected with 10,000 Retailers nationwide through our Wholesale site; debuted The Grommet Perks program. And those are just the major highlights.

    The Grommet, the place to discover new, innovative products from Makers, inventors, and entrepreneurs is celebrating its ninth anniversary.

     

    Thank you all for your help in making this a truly special year. We couldn't have done it without you.

    The Grommet Team

    Update: Robin S. from South Carolina, congratulations, you are our sweepstakes winner!

  • We Opened a Grommet Store

    A few years ago, when we launched The Grommet Wholesale, we set a goal for ourselves. By 2020, we wanted to see 10% of all products flowing through U.S. retail originating from independent small-scale Makers.

    Achieving this goal will create vibrant jobs on Main St. and accelerate the development of innovative products from Makers around the world. It will help strengthen neighborhoods, reinvigorate American manufacturing, and give power to meaningful businesses.

    The Grommet opens it's first retail location in the Natick Mall

    Ace Hardware's acquisition of a majority stake in The Grommet takes a massive step toward achieving that goal and so does this— we opened a Grommet store.

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  • Ace Hardware Has Acquired a Majority Stake in The Grommet

    In November, we placed Grommet displays in 250 Ace Hardware stores throughout the country. Since then, our partnership with Ace has expanded, strengthened, and, as of this morning, officially reached new heights.

    Ace Hardware and The Grommet share a deep heritage of helping local businesses and entrepreneurs thrive. Our values are uncannily aligned. We're even named after a piece of hardware. As our CEO Jules Pieri said, there is clearly some destiny at work here.

    This is exciting for seemingly limitless reasons. The most fundamental of which is they're allowing us to be ourselves and double down on our mission of helping small-scale Makers succeed like never before.

    There are few companies as dedicated to the success of small and local businesses as Ace Hardware. That's been their mission for the last 93 years and we have no doubt it will only strengthen over the next 93. And no one is in a better position to help us with our own mission of growing the businesses of our Makers and Retailers than Ace Hardware.

    To all of our Makers, Retailers, and supporters: thank you.

    Help spread the word! Check out the release & share on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram & LinkedIn!

  • 7 Grommets Supporting Breast Cancer Awareness

    Around the world, October is recognized as Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Breast cancer organizations lead campaigns, walks, and donation efforts to increase awareness and raise funds for research, prevention, treatments, and, ultimately, a cure.

    Here are six companies supporting breast cancer awareness month. Discover the products you can buy that help to support breast cancer organizations.

    We encourage you to participate in any of those efforts and wanted to let you know about the Makers we support that are participating in their own way.

     

    Here are six companies supporting breast cancer awareness month. Discover the products you can buy that help to support breast cancer organizations.

    1. Wink

    For every purchase, Wink donates a “Feeling Beautiful Again” bags to a cancer warrior through the Breast Cancer Charities of America. This helps regrow the lashes or brows of patients who have lost them through chemotherapy.

    Buy Now: $40

     

     

    Here are six companies supporting breast cancer awareness month. Discover the products you can buy that help to support breast cancer organizations.

    2. Peeps

    CarbonKlean created a pink ribbon edition of their eyeglass cleaners in honor of breast cancer awareness. Throughout the year, 20% of all sales of this style go to the National Breast Cancer Foundation. 

    Buy Now: $14.95

     

     

    Here are six companies supporting breast cancer awareness month. Discover the products you can buy that help to support breast cancer organizations.

    3. The Negg

    For every pink-lidded egg peeler sold, The Negg donates 10% of all sales to the Susan G. Komen foundation.

    Buy Now: $17.95

     

     

    Here are six companies supporting breast cancer awareness month. Discover the products you can buy that help to support breast cancer organizations.

    4. 1Face

    1Face makes watches for a cause and their pink watch focuses on breast cancer awareness. Like Peeps, 20% of their sales from their pink watch are donated to the National Breast Cancer Foundation.

    Buy Now: $39

     

    Continue Reading

  • Corporate Gifts They'll Actually Keep

    Let’s face it, stamping your logo on pens, cups, and keychains is often futile. They end up buried in junk drawers or between couch pillows. The better way for your brand to stand out? Put your name on something people will actually keep–useful and unique business gifts.

    Cue, The Grommet Custom.

    At The Grommet, we find innovative products you probably haven’t heard of. They're goods that stand for creativity, innovation, and usefulness in everyday life. They’re the that’s-really-cool, can-I-try-it, how-did-I-not-think-of-that kind of products. The stuff you want to be associated with.

    We’re biased, but Soo Mentor, Director of Diversity at MasterCard, isn’t.

    “If you are tired of branded bags, cups and hand sanitizers, The Grommet is your solution to cool, innovative and useful products to deliver your message and wow your participants. Grommet products are invented and sold by creative individuals who think through the user experience. Alex Ferrero quickly found a solution to a challenge and just took care of it at no cost–the true definition of customer service.”

    If you have a project that requires effective branded materials (think: paraphernalia at events and tradeshows, employee or client appreciation gifts), the process is simple. You tell us a little about you, and Alex will take it from there. Continue Reading

  • The Future of Made in the USA

    This week we’re celebrating Makers with products Made in the USA. At The Grommet, we see American manufacturing through the lens of the final product. So we recently attended a conference held by the Urban Manufacturing Alliance to see the progress being made in American manufacturing on the ground floor. Here are the issues we dug into.

    Access to Capital.  2.7% of female founders receive VC funding and it’s even less for minority business owners. The group advocated for alternative methods of financing like crowd funding and impact loans that have more generous results and are very effective in lifting small businesses off the ground.

    Physical Space. To combat this issue, cities and facilities are meeting in the middle. San Francisco has begun rolling out modular manufacturing spaces and across the country, micro-factories are popping up for companies looking at producing smaller batches of products before full-scale production.

    Education. Creating a product has never been easier, but many Makers enter the manufacturing world with limited knowledge. Manufacturers are being trained to help Makers understand this new realm regardless of their background. For the next generation, schools are focusing on technology and entrepreneurship programs. Two examples of that happening in Boston: BUILD and Fab Labs 4 America.

    Inclusivity. Entrepreneurship and the American Dream are evolving on a cultural level so policymakers and business leaders must make inclusivity a priority. Minority business owners seek representatives that look like them at the decision-making table. The more hurdles they face, the less likely they are to succeed and make an impact on their community. Beyond economic, it’s a trust-building issue. As the business world grows more diverse, that trust becomes more vital.

    There is plenty more we can and will dig into. If you have any stories or resources, we'd love to hear about them.

    And now, here are some of the American-made products from our site that are helping to make more American-made products possible.

    VideoStillV1_Jamstik

    1. Mobile guitar lessons

    Made in South Dakota, Jamstik+ lets you learn how to play the guitar at your own speed. The guitar neck complete with strings and frets plays through your iPhone, iPad, or Mac with free downloadable lessons.
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