how it began…
The year is 2007. Three guys riding a lift together at Brenkenridge start talking about the need for good quality, functional snowboarding accessories. This is how the Candygrind story begins.
Austin Paik, Aaron Mynett and Nick Demello were spending pretty much every day riding and at the end of the day they were still not satisfied with their options in snowboarding gear. So they started to spend their nights hanging out designing snowboarding accessories in the living room. They started with a lot of sketches and eventually those sketches came to life in a small line of products that would be coveted by their friends and fellow riders.
Fast forward five years and the core team that runs CandyGrind (CG) has only expanded by one full timer…Austin’s wife Brandi. Austin is the Founder and Creative Director, Brandi is the Vice President, Aaron the Media/Team Manager and Nick is the Warehouse Manager. They work with a team of seven reps and that is CandyGrind. The choice to stay small has been a deliberate one so far. There is an incredible team environment in their Colorado base. It is more like a group of lifelong friends than mere coworkers, and everything is a group effort, except maybe lunch…Austin seems to be in charge of lunch…more on that coming up.
Their offices are a place of fun, creativity and collaboration. They have a room where they can skateboard including a mini ramp, foosball, air hockey, a beer vending machine, a resident dog, and a full kitchen where real lunches are prepared and eaten together daily. Austin is often in the kitchen prepping for lunch and he feels very adamantly about everyone eating together. Everyone makes contributions and everything is a group effort. There are no egos getting in the way of progress. All of CG’s products are inspired and have a story behind them. They are stories that came about at BBQ’s, on chairlifts and everywhere else friends hang out and bounce ideas back and forth.
What began as a snowboard inspired company has branched out and become a snowboard, skate, surf and wakeboard influenced company and the lineup now includes backpacks, gloves, jackets, hoodies, pullovers, sweaters, t-shirts, balaclavas, beanies, banmasks, caps, wallets, summer apparel and boardshorts. They all display a flair for the bold, creative and inspired. Their products are all well thought out reflect great attention to detail.
One of their best selling items is their Handbag mitten. It is a pipe glove with silicone palm
and microfleece lining which fits inside of a well-constructed leather mitten with a zipper on the side so you can easily have use of your fingers while still having the warmth of a mitten. Their designs are cutting edge and unique. When you see a CandyGrind item…it’s unmistakeably CandyGrind.
Recently CG partnered with Never Summer for their first shred flick “What Matters”. They sponsor many events-concerts, rail jams, movie screenings and have an extensive team of riders including Yale Cusimano (who is also sponsored by Niche), Christy Prior (girl who shreds!) and Chris Corning, a 13 year old who appreciates his parents and kills it on the hill. Their team even includes musicians and artists.
while staying small
CG online orders ship from nearby stocked retailers, supporting the shops and keeping their manpower focused on designing and making it happen. It’s a true grassroots company, keeping it deliberately small and turning product over to the stores to sell rather than competing against their own dealers.
CandyGrind is a rider-owned company like so many snowboard, skate and surf companies. It was started for the love of snowboarding and it thrives because of their passion and dedication to what they do. CG has come a long way in 5 short years, but they are keeping it real. CandyGrind products are high-quality, durable and functional. Did we mention they look awesome?!
“Imagine if you tossed some of the best things in the world in a blender: puppies, duct tape, and campfires. This would create a plush mix of versatility and warmth—and cause the neighbor kids to cry. Luckily, you can find this magical blend of goodness without the drama by slipping on a pair of CandyGrind gloves. We built our reputation around the craftsmanship of these things. With features like custom dyed and embossed leather, Bomb Proof fully wrapped fingertips, Hipora inserts, and locking Velcro snap closures, our commitment to producing the best gloves in the world continues.” – CandyGrind*