Home Grown Books
Tell us about your business.Home Grown Books had a very organic beginning. Kyla Ryman, founder, is a reading specialist who supports beginning readers. Kyla was working with a great teacher within a home-school collective in Brooklyn who was making little books for the kids to practice reading. She was originally making them because it is very difficult to find beautiful and interesting books for the earliest reader. That is how Home Grown Books was born. When collaborating with an artist, we ask them to retain their art- how they work, the ideas and images they like to play with. Children understand much more complex ideas than they can initially read, so we want the artists to keep the complex and interesting parts of their work- we do not want them to make "books for kids". We currently have four sets of books, and want to keep making them. We also develop supporting products like beautiful wood products including puzzles and memory tiles. We also dream of creating an app.
What makes your business stand out?Everything. No one else is doing what we are doing. We are creating something completely new- the learning curve is on the part of the consumer to know that this is a choice as much as reaching for a phonics-based book when they feel their child is ready to start reading. We are content-based organic readers. I think there is room for both in the world. And ours are beautiful, have an eco-consciousness and a lot of love.
What's the best business advice you've received?Running a small business means learning about ALL the parts. Not just the parts you most enjoy. It is smart to get the proper help when you don’t have the expertise. Sometimes you really do get what you pay for, and sometimes you can get a student to help and that works too. Also, having a smart assistant who really is gunning for our success changed my life.
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