Independent & Inventive: Celebrating The Spirit Of Small Businesses

There’s a thrill that comes when you find something exceptional—something that you never knew you wanted, but now can’t live without. This kind of magical happenstance occurs everyday as we discover unique and innovative products from small businesses, inventors, and entrepreneurs who break the mold to create something amazing. For 12 years, The Grommet has been a platform, a meeting place, a home to these businesses—helping to bridge the gap between these finds and you. 

Creating Jobs & Boosting Local Economies

When you shop from a small business, there is pride that comes from knowing you found something beyond the generic, big-box commodity. But more than that is the fact that you’re making an impact. You’re helping build a business that supports people in the communities we all live in—creating jobs and putting money back into the local economy. In fact, 65% of net new jobs since 1995 were generated by small businesses—with over 50% of the working population working in a small business.1 These small but mighty businesses are delivering the goods on every level.

For every $100 spent at a chain retailer, $13.60 of revenue is recirculated into the local economy. For every $100 spent at a local retailer, $48 of revenue is recirculated into the local economy.

Civic Economics, 2012

Doing Good On Every Level

Beyond the immediate financial impact is the unbreakable connection that small businesses have to the communities and people around them, like Oowee, makers of custom leather drink sleeves in Asheville, North Carolina. Founder Gabriel Hargett partners with the Autism Society of North Carolina to provide work for those in need of employment opportunities. These team members hand sew each sleeve, help with packaging, and make up over half of the workforce at Oowee.

At The Zen Of Slow Cooking, Makers Meg Barnhart and Jane McKay wanted to help create employment opportunities for people with developmental disabilities, like Meg’s son Doug. So the slow- and multi-cooker seasoning packs are packaged through a partnership with Planet Access Company in Illinois. 

Small businesses give back in other ways too. Maker Dave Mauro from Mauro Seed Co. and his family decided that the best way to help combat hunger is from the soil up. They’re making non-GMO heirloom seeds in Tennessee to help folks grow gardens, and they work with organizations around the world to get the seeds into the hands of people who need them most.

Up in New England, Outdoor Metalworks Maker Nate Barr was inspired to create a constellation necklace after experiencing the nighttime view on a hike in New Hampshire. He and his wife want to help protect outdoor places like it, so each Made-In-Maine necklace sold helps fund the purchase and preservation of public lands through the nonprofit The Trust for Public Land.

The Grommet Finds These Small Businesses So You Can Find Them, Too

Research shows that these stories matter, and getting the word out about these businesses is an important part of helping them grow. Consumers want to know what the places they’re shopping stand for and how they’re helping the communities they call home. 63% of people are buying goods and services from companies that reflect their personal values and beliefs.2

The Grommet tells the stories behind these amazing products—connecting consumers to the products they want and the people they want to support. Reaching and attracting new customers is one of the most important challenges facing small businesses.3 On the flip side, 47% of consumers said they often go out of their way to shop at locally owned businesses.4 The Grommet is where the two connect.

Every day we discover these hidden gems from businesses in the hearts of our communities, helping you shop, support, and bring home the most creative, big-thinking, inventive products around.



1.  Forbes, 2013

2. Accenture, 2018

3. Statista, 2020

4. Salesforce, 2020


Recommended Articles


  1. How does one learn about marketing their product through The Grommet?

    1. Hi Mickey! Thanks for your inquiry. Here’s the form to fill out for our Discovery Team to consider your product.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.