Icebox Knitting

Icebox Knitting is an outdoor lifestyle manufacturing company based out of Longmont. Icebox emerged from its parent company, Alpine knitting in 1993. Initially located on Seventh and Walnut street in Boulder, Icebox has been around for over two decades.

Icebox Knitting has two core brand lines, Dohm and Xob. Dohm is a traditional yet vibrant textile brand, made from yarn imported from Italy. Xob’s line is sustainably created from upcycled materials. Initially, to create Xob’s products, the Icebox team repurposed old wool sweaters from thrift shops. As the company grew, however, they needed more material than just what they could find in small local stores. Now the Xob brand sources its thrift material from Texas, where Icebox’s partner factory separates the old items by color and content. Once the upcycled material is shipped to Colorado, its spun into the sustainable products they currently sell.

Scott Baker, the CEO of Icebox has worked with the SBDC in order to enhance his business. According to Scott, “I came onboard with the company ten years ago, and as soon as I did we secured an SBA loan. With the SBDC, we did monthly seminars and got advice on what we should and should not be doing. We’ve had a real nice relationship with the SBDC for the past three years and got some really helpful advice.”

Scott continued, “The SBDC has generated the best results we’ve had in doing this outreach for business counseling. Compared to the various organizations who have given us counseling the SBDC has really stood out in regard to its resources and consulting.”

Scott and his team have been utilizing the Boulder SBDC’s resources since 2012, but with more frequency in the past two years. Although Icebox certainly is not a new business, times and the market are ever changing. Recently, the SBDC has worked to see what direction Scott wants to take his business. According to Scott, “We’ve been talking about our new marketing strategy and how we can deliver our end product directly to the consumer. It has been difficult to service the retail buyer with all the new competition in the textile industry. Being a small brand, it is hard to get marketing dollars to generate a big presence, especially with the increasing number of firms.

Despite the tough competition, we at the Boulder SBDC think that Icebox has great potential for growth, particularly in regards to the development of their e-commerce platform. Scott is in concurrence and explained, “We’re looking at an e-commerce platform, and how we can deliver our product directly to the end consumer at the best rate. Our current model is wholesale, so evolving from business to business to business to consumer, and brining individual orders to customers could be a great way to generate revenue.

Like all small businesses, the development of industry and changes in demand will lead to unexpected challenges. It is important to adapt to the ever-changing times, and to keep a pliable mind when looking at your businesses future. Scott and Icebox Knitting are doing just that, and we at the Boulder SBDC are excited to see what direction they take. We are happy and proud to support a socially responsible and environmentally sustainable small business, and wish Scott and his team the absolute best.

ERC Insulation

ERC Insulation is a local, majority woman-owned and operated business based in Boulder, Colorado, serving Boulder, Denver, Jefferson, Eagle, Garfield and Pitkin Counties. The story surrounding the formation of ERC Insulation began in 2006, when Elton and Christine Randall formed Elton Construction and Design. Elton had difficulty finding a spray foam contractor for his jobs, so he sought a solution to this problem. Elton purchased a trailer with a spray foam reactor, which he could

Read More »
Black Swift Technologies

Boulder-based company Black Swift Technologies was founded by three PhD students from the University of Colorado. The three men were inspired to start the company from their work in the field during their studies. At CU, they learned how to chase storms and collect data using old military equipment, which is relatively complicated to use. They set out to simplify the process with unmanned aircraft systems and Black Swift Technologies was born. Although they are

Read More »
Altitude Spirits

In 2004, Matthew Baris and his father conceived of an idea: to start an organic distillery here in Colorado. Colorado is renowned for its variety of large and small local breweries, so they knew they would see some success with a unique idea like theirs. However, neither family member came from an extensive background in business, so they looked to the Boulder Small Business Development Center to help get their idea off the ground. Matt

Read More »
AOW Handmade

Annie Oakley Waterman is an entrepreneur and owner of AOW Handmade. AOW Handmade, founded in 2015, is a unique business that connects artisan enterprisers from all over the developing world to buyers in the United States. Whether it is textiles, silver, brass, paper maché or other materials, Annie seeks out socially responsible producers and helps them to sell their products to the western world. Annie’s favorite places to find her goods are in Mexico and

Read More »
Stratom

Stratom Inc., founded by Mark Gordon in 2001, is a Boulder-based unmanned robotics engineering and manufacturing firm. Stratom provides integrated solutions and products to government and commercial clients around the globe. Prior to founding Stratom, Mark worked in Sr. Management for various high tech companies. There he witnessed the volatility of the high tech industry and its move to outsource many of its products and services to foreign markets. Mark decided that he wanted to

Read More »
Leenie’s Southern Cafe

Conversations, laughter, biscuits and homemade jam melt together at Leenies Southern Café. Established in January 2006, Mel Flores and Eileen Gilmore’s restaurant in Longmont, CO has become a destination for those looking for a classic Southern breakfast and lunch restaurant in Longmont. The dining area is blanketed in simple white tablecloths and is surrounded by shelves loaded with Leenies jams and dishes while local artisan artwork decorates the walls. The atmosphere is relaxed and the

Read More »