MakersKit to take its DIY kits further with the Techstars Retail Accelerator

makerskit techstars retail accelerator bar set
There are a lot of things that most of us buy instead of make — everything from soap to cocktails. DIY brand MakersKit, however, has been encouraging consumers to get creative by offering kits with instructional videos that make the work easier. Their kits have caught on, and the startup was recently selected for the Techstars Retail Accelerator in partnership with Target, and has relocated to Minneapolis for three months to participate.

MakersKit has already performed well since its launch in 2014, selling over a quarter-million kits to date, but the company clearly plans to continue growing. As part of the Accelerator, MakersKit will work with mentors from Target and the Techstars network to continue its work in creating fun products and experiences for consumers.

“Through the program we hope to both create a scalable nationwide, in-store experience program and spark creativity in consumers. That’s what we’re after — getting people to get creative,” said MakersKit co-founder and CEO Mike Stone. Both he and co-founder Jawn McQuade are former elementary school teachers.

The company has created over 100 different kinds of kits so far, with projects including DIY mozzarella cheese, ghost chili hot sauce, customized soap, terrariums, and much more. There’s definitely yuppie-slash-hipster appeal to both the kits themselves and what they make, so it’s fitting that they are currently available at retailers like Urban Outfitters, Anthropologie, West Elm, and Williams-Sonoma. They can also be found at Macy’s, and the new partnership has brought the kits to select Target stores in San Francisco as well. The company also opened a flagship store in Los Angeles earlier this year.

MakersKit has made its mark on its own, so we look forward to seeing where the startup goes after its time in the Techstars Retail Accelerator. Our DIY expectations are high.

Health & Fitness

In search of the fountain of youth, beauty companies turn to tech

Beauty tech is a fairly new concept, but at CES 2019, companies such as Olay, L’Oreal, and Neutrogena were fully embracing it with all kinds of gadgets that promise to give you glowing skin.

Apple banned from distributing some iPhone models in Germany

Apple is following the FTC's lead and has sued Qualcomm for a massive $1 billion in the U.S., $145 million in China, and also in the U.K., claiming the company charged onerous royalties for its patented tech.

Microsoft leans on A.I. to resume safe delivery of Windows 10 Update

Microsoft is leaning on artificial intelligence as it resumes the automatic rollout of the Windows 10 October 2018 Update. You should start seeing the update soon now that Microsoft has resolved problems with the initial software.
Virtual Reality

Think virtual reality is just for games? These awesome apps will change your mind

Virtual reality isn't all about gaming. Swim with turtles, paint in 3D, and immerse yourself in some unique experiences the platform has to offer with our curated list of the best VR apps.
Emerging Tech

The best 3D printers for 2019

On the hunt for a new 3D printer? We've got your back. Whether you're a beginner or a seasoned veteran, this list of the best 3D printers has what you're looking for.
Smart Home

Airbnb says sorry to guest for how it dealt with undisclosed security camera

An Airbnb guest recently found a surveillance camera in his rental apartment that hadn't been properly disclosed in the listing. The firm admits its initial response to the guest's complaint was poor, but has since made amends.
Smart Home

Busted: Facebook Portal gets 5-star reviews from company employees

It's fair to say that Facebook's Portal smart display received a tepid response at launch, so it was something of a surprise to see lots of glowing reviews of the device on Amazon. Turns out some were written by Facebook workers.
Smart Home

Thinking of buying an Instant Pot? Here's what you need to know

The Instant Pot is a powerful kitchen appliance that does everything from pressure cook to to slow cook to steam. Heck, you can even make yogurt in it. Here's all you need to know about the magic device.
Smart Home

Want a smarter home? Ditch the keys with these great smart locks

A good smart lock should offer a combination of security and convenience. Fortunately, these devices keep your home protected, your family safe, and your belongings secure from possible intruders.
Smart Home

The best sous vide machines cook your food perfectly, every single time

Want to make four-star meals from the comforts of your own kitchen? Here are the best sous vide machines available right now, whether you prefer simple immersion circulators or something more complex.
Smart Home

Idaho mother says her child’s light-up sippy cup exploded

After a mother filled a Nuby insulated light-up cup with milk, the cup allegedly exploded. The incident caused burns to the mother's hand and face and a stinging sensation in her lungs that required a trip to the hospital.
Smart Home

Project Alias is a ‘smart parasite’ that stops smart speakers from listening

Two designers chose to do something about nosy smart speakers. The result is Project Alias, a "smart parasite" that whispers nonsense to Google Home and Alexa until it hears a specific wake word.
Smart Home

DS3 Clean water-free swatches could be the future of cleaning products

DS3 Clean swatches were on display at CES 2019. The small swatches come in several types, including shampoo and toilet cleaner. They're great for travel, but their real impact is in how such supplies will be shipped and stored.
Smart Home

Amazon patents a technology to help Alexa fight fake voice attacks

Amazon filed a patent this month for a new technology that looks like it would help its digital assistant Alexa fight fake voice attacks that could potentially fool Alexa's biometric security protocols.