These 5 Cool Innovations Have Westchester County Roots

These innovations are changing the local business landscape. Photo courtesy of Vivid RGB Lighting

Luxurious yarns, LED lights, aircraft control systems — oh my! Read about top products with ties to Westchester County and the career paths that led to them.

Westchester County is filled with pioneers, innovators, and creators from all different fields, from crafting to theatrical lighting and more. Within their niches, these innovators have created something special. A handful of makers are creating products that are not only beautiful and functional, but have a direct impact on the community. Here are five cool innovations with roots in the 914 that are gaining popularity and recognition in Westchester and beyond.

Artyarns

White Plains
914.428.0333

Artyarns was founded in 2002 by Iris Schreier, who previously spent nearly a decade working for publisher Scholastic in software and business development. Schreier was inspired by all the new yarns coming onto the market, and she and her friend proposed a book called Exquisite Little Knits, where each chapter of the book focused on a type of yarn. It was then that she realized pure, luxurious yarns were not easy to come by. She decided to begin creating her own yarns, and thus Artyarns was born.

 

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Artyarns works with sustainable materials and countries that have international labor standards. There are hundreds of colors of yarn coming in solids, stonewashed, ombres, neon colors, and more. Yarn types include artisanal blend, silk, wool, cashmere, and silk mohair. Artyarns newest yarn, Silky Twist, is a combination of 80% merino and 20% silk. The brand will be unveiling it at the H&H Americas trade show in June 2023, and it can be found in select yarn shops, including one of Artyarns’s retailer stores, Pickup Every Stitch in Mt. Kisco.

“The yarns we produce can be found in discerning stores worldwide. We have a unique part of the market, in that we focus on the high-end niche. Our goal is to get the knitter who experiences our yarns for the first time to come back for more,” Schreier says. “We want them to love the feel of them and the outcome when they use them. We want to spoil them for other yarns.”

Please note: Artyarns is a wholesale-only facility, which means it cannot accommodate consumers at the factory. However, consumers can find Artyarns products at Pickup Every Stitch, located at 200 Main St in Mt. Kisco.

Barrie House Coffee Roasters

Elmsford
800
.876.2233

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Barrie House Coffee Roasters began in 1934 and has continued to grow through the years with innovations and new beginnings. The company started a single-serve capsules line and a new line for Nespresso-compatible capsules, and it also holds a patent for the design of its single-serve cup. Barrie House has become a leading roaster and manufacturer for private label and branded coffee products in fields including retail, e-commerce, hospitality, and more. Barrie House has won numerous awards, including a Good Foods Awards finalist nomination, Coffee Roasting CEO of the Year (North America), and more. Plus, The Barrie House Farm Program adopts farms in countries from which the business sources its coffees, giving funding to the farmers and their infrastructure. With this, Barrie House is able to be involved at the beginning of the coffee experience and take part in promoting sustainable crops.

Raised Right Pets LLC

Rye
844.777.3871

Looking for quality food with a home-cooked style for your cat or dog? Raised Right Pets works with veterinarian Dr. Karen Becker and pet food formulation expert Steve Brown to craft a balanced diet for pets with low-carb ingredients. The food is made for adult dogs, puppies, and cats. Customers can choose which type of cadence they would like for their cat or dog based on the company’s calculator, and then can pick from a multitude of flavors including turkey, pork, beef, turkey and pumpkin, and more. The brand’s other products include meat bites treats and Shake A Flakes meal topper. Raised Right Pets began as a family business with roots in farming and ranching, raising food for humans, then made the step to make quality and fresh food for pets. In 2019, Raised Right Pets was awarded the Innovation Award for Nutrition. Pet owners can find Raised Right food in many pet stores nearby.

 

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Safe Flight Instrument, LLC

White Plains
914.946.9500

Planes and aircraft carriers can’t function without certain instrumentation, flight performance, and control systems. Safe Flight Instrument LLC was founded in 1946 and continues to be a leader in aviation safety and performance systems. The White Plains-based business has U.S. patents for wind shear detection, alerting, and recovery guidance innovations. With products installed in two-thirds of the world’s aircraft and over 50 airlines, corporate jets, and the U.S. and International Armed Services, Safe Flight is dedicated to making sure that it supplies the industry with quality products. The company also designs equipment to help with helicopters and all types of aircraft for both commercial and military operations. Some other innovations the brand has pioneered in include stall warning, airborne wind shear warning computers, powerline detection, and more.

Vivid RGB Lighting

Peekskill
718.635.0817

Do you have a project or special event that needs pixel-based LED lighting? Peekskill-based Vivid RGB Lighting was founded in 2011 by Brian Fassett and Sepp Spenlinhauer. With their theatrical and architectural lighting design backgrounds, they wanted to create their own color-changing LED pixels, so they designed and manufactured this programming. In 2009, this was cutting-edge technology, and they started receiving requests to buy their products. “After a social meeting with the owner of one of the largest concert companies in the world, Tait Towers, we were encouraged to ‘run with it,’” Fassett explains.

Vivid RGB Lighting
Client Project: “The Tap Powered by Xfinity” (Chicago, IL). RGB worked in conjunction with Blackjack Lighting. The product is Vivid RGB Lighting’s Orb100Photo. Photo courtesy of Vivid RGB Lighting

Vivid RGB Lighting sells a highly technical product that consists of design, development, and installation. Customers have the ability to set up the lighting and install it. Vivid RGB Lighting’s goal is “to reduce the friction to using our product – that you have the information you need, where and when you need it, and to be able to troubleshoot the problem at hand,” Fassett says. “In the bigger picture, this is no small accomplishment, in the sense that on many projects, we start working for a designer, who then turns the project over to a scenic shop or construction company, then the equipment is purchased by an agent, and, finally, it is installed by a technician on a project site who might be seeing the product for the first time.”

Westchester Innovations
Product Shot of Pixel360. Photo courtesy of Vivid RGB Lighting

The color-changing, pixel-based LED lighting company specializes in innovations for everything from holiday light shows to parties galore. Some of its projects include School of Glow in SeaWorld San Diego, Macy’s Parade Universal Orlando, Heartbreak Hotel – Jason Lyons Designer, Microsoft Connect NYC, and more. “We have really moved into a build-to-order model, where all the features of a product are made exactly to the needs of your job. That being said, in a way every job brings new products,” Fassett says. “This month, we are finalizing a new clear globe option, which has been in the works for over a year, to go out on a Broadway tour soon.”

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