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Kenzie wants to hide smart assistants inside its cute, crocheted animals

Smart speakers are designed to fit into the aesthetic design of most homes, but some homes have a unique look that the cool metallic grays and blacks just don’t mesh with. If your home is particularly colorful — or you just have a lot of stuffed animals that you like to show off — then Kenzie might be the go-to company for you.

Kenzie was founded by Eric Grudzien and Karen McIlquham with the intent of changing the way people decorate their nurseries. If you want to keep an Alexa or Google Home in your child’s nursery for the sake of playing lullabies or controlling smart home technology within the room, you can now hide it. Kenzie designs crocheted and knitted creatures that slide down over the top of smart speakers and mask them from view–and from the prying hands of curious toddlers.

According to an interview with GeekWire, the idea sprang out of a desire to change up the look of their homes. Given how many smart devices the average person now has, people might get a little tired of seeing the same color schemes and cylindrical shapes throughout the home.

McIlquham creates the animals by hand. According to GeekWire, it takes her about eight hours and $6 worth of yarn to make even a single stuffed animal. The options for purchase right now are a giraffe, a pig, a cat, a bear, and octopus, and a frog. The company has seen a good amount of interest in their local area, and the pair have taken it to Kickstarter to see how widespread that interest might be.

Even the name “Kenzie” has a home-grown feel to it: it’s the name of one of Grudzien’s daughters. He wanted to soften the appearance of smart home technology in their rooms and gave the example of music emerging from the stuffed animal. It would keep the children entertained and make for a cute conversation piece.

Kenzie has a goal of $30,000 on Kickstarter and 33 days left to meet that goal. Early bird pricing starts at $50, but once the Kickstarter ends the Kenzie animals will be priced at $75. It’s an adorable idea and one not often seen in the tech-driven world of smart home technology. If you want to contribute, keep in mind that pledging to a Kickstarter is not a guarantee of delivery.

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Patrick Hearn
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Patrick Hearn writes about smart home technology like Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, smart light bulbs, and more. If it's a…
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