HOLLAND — A neighborhood girl is working to unravel an issue she seen whereas elevating her boys: unpleasant youngsters’s furnishings.
Lauren Maat is a born-and-raised Holland resident. She met her husband whereas attending Holland Christian Excessive College and later studied at Hope School. The 2 traveled the world for a few decade earlier than returning to the world to lift their youngsters.
“My husband really works at Herman Miller, and we’ve entry to this nice grownup furnishings,” Maat stated.
“We moved again to Michigan in the summertime of 2019 and renovated our home and I felt like there was a disconnect between our present furnishings and what’s accessible on the youngsters’ market.”
Maat has labored in startups and enterprise capital for many of her profession. She noticed the issue as a client and determined to unravel it.
“My background is extra in enterprise and operations, not in furnishings design,” Maat stated. “I am working with a Grand Rapids-based industrial designer known as Filter Studio.
“I shared my imaginative and prescient with them and a few of the aesthetics I used to be going for. They took my inspiration and we labored backwards and forwards for a number of months.”
Ultimately, the crew developed Maat’s debut product: the Oslo Tower.
“It is a studying tower meant for 18-month-olds to five-year-olds,” Maat stated. “It offers them a lift to stand up to the counter and assist with no matter their dad and mom are doing within the kitchen. Each single day, my two-year-old would carry a eating room chair into the kitchen and stand on it as a result of he needed to see what I used to be doing, however it wasn’t secure.
“I did not create the idea. There are different ones available on the market, however as a client, I did not need them as a result of they have been too huge to cover away or they price an excessive amount of to ship or they took too lengthy to reach. Our tower is meant to mix in and go together with your present kitchen. It is sufficiently small to suit beneath a counter.”
Maat has named her enterprise Audwell.
“That is one thing we struggled with for a very long time,” she stated. “We simply could not discover a identify that basically resonated. We’re a child model, however we’re advertising towards dad and mom — so we needed to go for frolicsome and complex on the identical time. It is a made-up phrase and we made up our personal definition.
“As a father or mother, after I see plastic and messes and children’ toys all over the place, I really feel wired. However by making merchandise that each dad and mom and children love, I really feel like I may be extra current. It is not an eyesore that I need to disguise away when I’ve associates over. In fact, we nonetheless have a few of that, however it’s a relaxing mindset. It brings concord to your house.”
Whereas the enterprise is at present centered on the Oslo Tower, extra merchandise will launch within the coming months.
“My aim is to make aesthetically-pleasing merchandise which can be eco-friendly,” Maat stated. “They will not find yourself in a landfill or disrupt the movement of your house. I nonetheless have plastic toys in my residence — it isn’t prefer it’s gone altogether. However this can be a step in the appropriate course.”
To be taught extra, go to audwell.com.