Here at The Grommet our mission is to put an end to nameless, faceless business and highlight the people and the stories behind the products we launch each day. And it's in that spirit that we're continuing this series to further share the stories of our Makers with you. Get to know them better, learn more about their journeys as Makers and entrepreneurs and learn how you, The Grommet Community, have changed their businesses for the better.
Next in our Meet the Maker series, we sit down with Ken and Cyndi Freeman, the Makers behind Vermont Rolling Pins. With patience and intuition, Ken hand-turns each rolling pin in his mountainside workshop as his watchful eye brings out the wood’s character. He sands until the pin reaches a satiny finish, then seals it with a protective beeswax mineral oil that enhances the natural beauty. Ken and Cyndi have built a successful business with these heirloom quality instruments (which are made to be used–and admired–for generations).
We recently caught up with them to learn more about their lives as Makers and what doing business is like.
What did you want to be when you grew up?
Ken wanted to be a professional baseball pitcher and I wanted to be a photographer.
What are your best tips for building a successful business as an entrepreneur?
Our advice for entrepreneurs is to be self motivated, work hard, and be interested in ideas and in marketing them.
What Maker tool can you not live without?
What has been the most rewarding part of business for you?
Working together in a family business, creating a wonderful product, and meeting amazing people across the USA.
Words of wisdom for other Makers? Any books or resources you'd recommend?
Find mentors in your field of interest. Read books on your craft and on marketing. Two suggested reads for marketing are Jay Levinson & Seth Godin's Guerrila Marketing for the Home-Based Business and Andy Sernovitz's Word of Mouth Marketing. Also if you have an idea, work on it and then try marketing it. Maybe some ideas won't work, but some will. Go for it!
Our Community wants to know that their support of you and your product has made a difference. Tell us what being launched on The Grommet has meant for your business.
We absolutely love the Grommet Community. This community is so unique in that it loves innovative products that solve a problem for the consumer or in our case, designs that take something ordinary and make it not only useful, but beautiful too. The Grommet has represented us exactly as we like to be portrayed. So thank you. And thank you to the Community for your support.
To learn more about Vermont Rolling Pins, watch our video here.