Colorado cool stuff:
ABLE PLANET HEADPHONES
Taking technology originally designed for the hearing impaired to a broader market, Able Planet started making headphones a year after its 2005 founding. Four years and 26 Consumer Electronics Show awards later, the 20-employee (and hiring) Able Planet makes 50 different products based on its proprietary Linx Audio.
Linx cancels outside noise and alters the signal to turn notes into chords, says Mary Semcken, vice president of marketing. “You get a full, rich sound at a lower level,” she says, meaning Able Planet headphones balance great sound and hearing protection. “You need to treat your headphones like a snowboard helmet or football gear.” $119 to $299 retail.
Made by Able Planet Inc., Wheat Ridge, (303) 215-9770, www.ableplanet.com. There is a dealer locator on the website.
MAKE MY NOTEBOOK
Designer Sara Blette worked for Communications Arts in Boulder and started making Garden Journals in 2007 as a creative outlet. “I love to garden,” she says, “and I also had a childhood obsession with Trapper Keepers.”
She soon launched a companion line of artsy notebooks that evolved into a website, www.MakeMyNotebook.com, last year to sell custom handmade notebooks with a choice of 16 cover designs and gridded or lined papers. Leaving her day job last year to freelance, Blette now sells her notebooks in 120 brick-and-mortar stores and is inching toward profitability.
“I assemble them all and design them all,” she says. “I’m my own sweatshop.” Notebooks: $12 to $18 retail. Garden Journal: $30 retail.
Made by Make My Notebook LLC, Denver, www.makemynotebook.com. Also available at Wordshop and Scribbles in Denver and Details in Littleton.
“I was home visiting my family on the Sunshine Coast in Australia, and I found Queensland Yoghurt,” says Noosa co-founder Koel Thomae. “I fell in love with it and couldn’t stop thinking about it back in Colorado.” So the natural-foods veteran brought Queensland’s Paul and Grant Mathewson to Boulder, partnered with Morning Fresh Dairy in Fort Collins, and Noosa was born in January.
“It’s uniquely thick and creamy, almost velvety, and it has a nice balance of sweet and tart,” says Thomae of the recipe. “I’m really partial to the mango, and I love the honey, too.” $2.39 for eight ounces retail.
Made by Noosa Yoghurt LLC, Boulder, www.noosayoghurt.com. Available at Whole Foods in northern Colorado, Morning Fresh Dairy home delivery in Fort Collins and vicinity, and other retailers around the state.
ROSY RINGS REED DIFFUSERS
From its birth in Shannon Cumberland’s basement in 1995, Rosy Rings has steadily and surely grown into a candle-making juggernaut. Now located in northeast Denver – and wind-powered – the Rosy Rings factory makes candles as well as reed diffusers – vials of scented oil.
“You stick a bunch of reeds in there, and they diffuse the scent,” says Stephanie Babich, Rosy Rings’ sales director. New this year is a cherry blossom scent used in both candles and reed diffusers – it quickly became the top seller in both categories. “We’re having a strong start to the year,” Babich says. $52 retail.
Made by Rosy Rings Inc., Denver, www.rosyrings.com. Available at Homefest (5912 S. Holly St., Greenwood Village) and Decade (56 S. Broadway, Denver).