Why the funny name?
As we introduce the company to the world, perhaps the first question to ask is "WHY THAT NAME?"
Growing up I have always wanted to name all kinds of companies after my family, and so I always named them "B--- Family" but my wife suggested that I don't bring too much attention to our family name, and so a hunt began.
Many MANY names went back and forth in conversation with some friends, and someone mentioned "B-Grade" and my mind sparked.
I began thinking "Well, it is B---- Grade, it is MY grade of yoyo," and I have always loved a little tongue-in-cheek humor, so the name became appealing to me really quickly.
Calling it B-Grade was also my way of admitting that I am only beginning, I don't have 20 years of experience in designing and selling yoyos, I only have 18 years of playing with them and evaluating what made them feel the way they feel, so I cannot guarantee that everything I throw against the wall will work, some will inherently be a B-Grade idea from the start, and I am alright with that.
The real kicker came with the slogan: "Better than the Name Implies" these are "Better" Grade yoyos. Whatever I bring to production will absolutely exceed the quality and play that I have felt in most of my old collection, (with one boutique company excluded from that) and those who are willing to take a chance on this small startup will be pleasantly surprised with how good a REAL B-Grade Yo-Yo can be.
To most, B-Grade means "Seconds quality" or "Not up to par," but for us, B-Grade means we are putting out the BEST.
My first experience with the yoyo came from a Travelling Professional Yo-yo Man who came to our school back around 1996. I instantly fell in love as he showed off the amazing tricks that were possible, finishing off with "The most deadly trick ever performed" launching the yoyo into the air and catching it in his shirt pocket.
I took my new wooden axle yoyo out for a spin, and it wouldn't sleep. I threw it harder and harder, until finally the string snapped and the yoyo went flying across the playground. I was so disgusted and hurt inside that I gave up yoyoing "forever."
Fast-forward about 8 years and I acquired a Yomega Powerbrain XP, and I have been yoyoing ever since.
In 2020, during "The End of the World as we know it," I began working on some CAD mock-ups in my spare time.
In the spring of 2022 a few friends convinced me to finally try and have one of my designs made, and that design has become "The Creation."
Yoyos have been a passion of mine, they can be a fun hobby, a distraction from a difficult world, even a career. These little toys bring so much joy to me, and I want to make sure they continue to push forward to bring joy to the rest of the world as well.
I didn't grow up yoyoing like my husband, I first gained interest in them by watching him yoyo in college. (Yes, in college)
When we first got married we sat down with crafting tools and paint and made a few dozen hand-painted wooden yoyos and sold them for $3 each back in 2011. I didn't realize at the time just how far this journey would take us. It has had its ups and downs along the way, and at times It has felt like we were just spinning and not getting anywhere, but when I saw the designs he was drawing on his computer I knew I wanted him to follow through with it and make his dream designs a reality.
I have a nice collection of yoyos that I call my own, and I love to play with them, but as a mom, I don't find as much time as I would like. The good thing is: they are as excited as we are about these yoyos, so it won't be long before we are all playing together.