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Tag Archives: Behind the Scenes

  • A Look Ahead at 2018

    Our product discovery team has already been hard at work finding innovative, Grommet-worthy products to share with you in 2018. We sat down with our product experts to get the scoop on the types of products you’ll be seeing this year.

    Meredith

    Smart Kitchen is here to stay, and we are seeing more and more companies come up with new ways of perfecting the way we cook, bake, grill etc. by infusing everyday activities with technology that makes our lives easier. With that being said the most successful smart kitchen products have to solve a common problem in a different and more effective way and be an affordable price.

    The health benefits and the ease of home preparation of fermented foods will continue to be a big trend and we see so many Makers coming out with DIY solutions. It’s nice to see a revival of something that has been used by many for centuries make a comeback and continue to grow.

    Taking everyday products and reinventing them. We are seeing a resurgence of this within home and housewares. When you can take something that already exists and re-design it to make it better and solve a widespread consumer problem, it's powerful.

    Ryan

    The technology category continues to redefine itself as electronics spread to all product categories and give more focus to niche categories. Finding ways for technology to infuse itself with everyday tasks and make our lives a little more convenient is going to be our focus.

    While the fidget spinner craze came and went quickly this year, we do anticipate continued interest in out-of-the box ready to play toys. I'm expecting 2018 to move away from the learn-to-code STEM toy and focus more heavily on interactive toys that seamlessly mesh the digital and physical worlds. Mixed realities (Augmented and Virtual) will likely see deeper development.

    We are expecting a number of shifts in the hardware and tool space for 2018. Naturally, this lends itself to connected products enhancing our ability to build, tinker, and improve our homes. We also anticipate re-designs of familiar tools that will continue to shrink, become stronger, and more efficient than those prior.

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  • 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.

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  • 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!

  • Our Birthday Infographic: 8 years and over 2,000 Makers

    The Grommet turns 8 years old today! We're celebrating with a new infographic about what we—our Makers, our community, our customers, our Retailers, and The Grommet Team—have helped accomplish, together.

    The Grommet Birthday Infographic

  • The Grommet Solves the Problems of SXSW

    Five members of The Grommet team, myself included, headed to SXSW Interactive 2016 in Austin, Texas with one goal: solve any problem presented to us with a dozen Grommets we brought with us. Also water. That was a savior. It seems even the sun is bigger in Texas.

    We met thousands of people, most of whom had never heard of The Grommet, which presented an exciting challenge. Spreading our message and showcasing some of the innovative products we've discovered on the streets of Austin was an exhilarating experience we're just now recovering from. Seriously. We lost voices and I nearly passed out from dehydration. You might be asking, "How is that possible? You had so much water with you." Believe me, I'm aware of the irony.

    For those of you who follow our daily launches and happenings but couldn't attend SXSW, we put together a snapshot of our experience. And if you're looking to solve your own problems on a daily basis or looking for the perfect gift for someone you know (Mother's Day and Father's Day are right around the corner), take a dive into the abyss of our products. You're bound to find something.

    Grommet SXSWFacebook PartyGrommet Ground Campaign

    Where are those awesome pictures from? Our Snapchat! Follow by searching "thegrommet" or hover over our Snapcode below in the app for behind the scenes pictures and videos you won't find anywhere else.

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  • Makers Who Made It: 100 Stories of Starting a Business

    This past summer, as we were coming up on The Grommet’s seventh birthday in October, we had many conversations about all that The Grommet and our Makers had accomplished since it began in 2008—and wondering how to better document it.

    Even though The Grommet has been telling the stories behind the products for many years, we realized we wanted to tell the stories behind our Makers, inventors, and entrepreneurs—and the idea of publishing our very first book was born.

    Makers Who Made It: 100 Stories of Starting a Business is the result. We asked Grommet Makers to answer a series of questions about how, when, and why they developed a product. We required they answer one dozen questions—with the option to answer an additional 20 questions—and the answers starting flowing in.

    The Grommet ebook for Makers

    We were all impressed how so many of the contributors were so generous with their time (we know how busy they are!), with many answering far more questions than what we requested. They went above and beyond, sharing information on a wide variety of personal and professional topics to help give a complete picture on how to start and grow their own small business. Continue Reading

  • The (Make Make Make Make) Maker Movement Soundtrack [Shake it Off Parody]

    Makers gonna make… and we made a music video. When the pop music world gives you a gem like “Shake It Off,” you’ve got to make a parody (right?). Well at least for us, it made these recent snow days a bit more bearable.

    The Grommet team is all about good stories, good products, good videos, and (after hours) a good jam session, so why not throw it all together? Press play to catch our team and cast of Makers, making and shaking … 

    to this. sick. beat.

    ...

     ...

    Want to learn more about the Maker Movement? Check out our Maker Movement infographic.

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  • The Family That Works Together, Stays Together

    Here at The Grommet, we know first-hand that becoming a successful Maker and entrepreneur is hard work. It takes skill, relentless dedication, and a bit of luck. It also takes a village. For 16% of our Makers, that village is their own family. Working as part of a family business is a unique and interesting experience yet it's not for everyone. There are always challenges when running a business and working with family that can sometimes make it even more difficult. Yet for those who do make it work, they make it work very well. We asked a few of our Makers who happen to share a last name with their co-workers what it's like to work with family and how they've found success and happiness together.

     

    family owned business - Vinrella

    "Working together can bring you even closer and forge strong bonds, but only if you bring out the best in each other. Plain and simple, the energy has to be right. We happen to work really well together for a variety of reasons but we believe deeply in each other and our unique abilities. We grew up in different generations so we often have unique, fresh ideas that the other wouldn't think of. That's beneficial"

    Sheri & Nicole Hammonds- Mother / Daughter team and Makers of Umbrella in a bottle, Vinrella

    family owned business - Pilgrim Waters

    "Working together is like finding the missing jigsaw piece, Keith and I are true opposites: I work from a point of view that there are no limits...throwing my heart in to a new idea and  metaphorically setting sail. Then Keith  chorales  us in to an organized and productive harbor so we can be focussed and methodical which enables us to  grow our business. Being equally motivated and sharing different aspects of the business is more and more gratifying and makes us truly happy."

    Keith and Susy Waters - Husband / Wife Team and Makers of Pilgrim Waters

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  • A Handcrafted Holiday Dessert Table

    To mark the opening of our holiday Pop-In Shop (our first retail experience which is inside Boston's Michelle Willey boutique) we recently hosted an opening party to celebrate this Grommet "first." However, we set out to celebrate more than just bringing our Grommet products to retail shelves; we were marking  a strong relationship with a local retailer (Michelle), while celebrating our Makers and introducing them (and their stories and products) to the local community.

    PopinParty1

    With the shop full of friendly faces of Makers, local Retailers, our biggest supporters, media, and an excited Grommet crew, we kicked off the holiday season in style.

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  • "Pop In" and Be a Part of a Grommet First

    Untitled-1

    Just in time for the holidays, we're opening our first-ever Pop-In Shop and you're cordially invited. We've teamed up with local Retailer, Michelle Willey to set up shop within her storefront in Boston’s South End. 

    If you're like us, you're on the hunt for most unique gifts this year. By bringing our Grommets to this retail location, we are making it easier for you to support independent Makers this holiday season and purchase gifts that have meaning. We hope you accept our invitation to  experience what it means to “Give Differently” this year. Through our “Pop-In” experience, you will be able to touch, test, and purchase Grommets on-site as part of our installation within the shop. On the shelves, you will find popular items such as the instructive yoga mat by Yoga by Numbers, along side Boston-born and manufactured products like drink lids by Cuppowand custom handcrafted gold and silver jewelry by Dennis Higgins among others– all of which are created by independent Makers and have been vetted and approved by our Discovery Team.

    Our host and partner, the ethereal South End boutique Michelle Willey, is helping us bring this exciting project to life. If you're in the Boston area, stop by to start your holiday shopping with a collection of giftable Grommets. Not local? Browse our Pop-In collection that includes all of the unique gift ideas you’d find on the store shelves.

    Where:
    Michelle Willey
    8 Union Park Street, Boston, MA
    When:
    November 20 - December 24
    Hours
    Mon-Sat 11-6, Sun 12-5

    We will also be holding special events on the weekends. Be sure to join us for Small Business Saturday to receive complimentary gift wrapping when you #ShopSmall (and check back for news on future events).

    ...
    wrapping-day

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