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Our Design Process

Our Values

At Standard Spoon, our design process grew out of our values.  
Our goal wasn’t to create yet another commodified, “throwaway” tool so we could make a buck on Amazon.  Our goals have always been to achieve maximum functionality, beauty, and durability - AND to innovate beyond what is already out there.
So to that end, our design process started with asking a lot of questions.  What limitations did bartenders have with their existing tools?
And by asking those questions and meditating on the best answers, we were able to innovate aligned with the guidelines our inner values demanded.  
So when we spoke to bartenders who spent their nights nursing cuts and scratches from the “iconic” twisty spoon, we took notice. 
When bartenders told us that they would stir drinks only to have the head fall off of the spoon mid-stir, we definitely took notice. 
And when bartenders complained about flaking metal finishes and varnishes  depositing unwanted materials in cocktails from inferior barware, we winced. . . and then we took notice. 
Our next step was to research why things were the way they were. 
And in doing so, we discovered that making twisty spoons was cheap, and making smooth, straight-handled spoons was expensive.  
In fact, it was so expensive that no one else had even bothered figuring out how to do it right.  
So, we invented the process ourselves. 
The same went for our finishes: for our spoons, jiggers, and muddlers. We developed a proprietary finishing process that prevents metal finishes from wearing down as easily, and eliminates any flaked metal from mingling with our mixers. 
Now we know there is some lore about the twist in the twisted bar spoon serving a few purposes, from floating soda to layering shots. But the truth is that the cheapness came first, and the mythology of purpose grew around it later. Twisted barspoons are they way that they are because it's cheaper to stamp out the shape of the spoon -- this is how all flatware is manufactured. The twist is applied to the handle to form a spiral; the twist exists to mimic a cylindrical, straight-handled spoon, which is required to rotate in hand for any stirred drink.

We approached this design with the opposite intent.
We set a quality, usability, and aesthetic goal first and spared no expense in developing a manufacturing process to realize it. We produced the first seamless, straight-handled modern barspoon, and have done it so well that we'll guarantee its quality for life. That is what our values demand and what makes Standard Spoon unique for our customers - and a point of pride for ourselves. 

 

What about durability? 

As artists, Shawn & I might have been a bit naïve when we started. 
We knew that products were made cheaply.  We didn't (and still don't) like it, but that’s just the modern world. 
And we knew that people included “planned obsolescence” into their tools.  We really didn't like that, but we understood that big companies often put profits ahead of their customers, and didn't design products to last anymore (otherwise, what would they release as "next year's" model?)
One pivotal moment is when we realized that in many cases, these other products weren’t just designed to become obsolete some day, replaced by next year's model.  They were actually designed to fail, to break, to come apart.
And that's something we refused to understand.  
This "planned failure" struck a deep chord in me and Shawn, because nothing could have been more antithetical to our values than intentionally designing something to fail just so you could sell more. 
So of course we did the opposite. 
We designed our products to last. 
And last and last. . .  
In fact, this year we decided that we would no longer offer a “Lifetime Guarantee” on our products.  
Instead, we will offer a GENERATIONAL Guarantee: A guarantee that our tools will be something you can pass down to your kids and grandkids, your nieces and nephews.
Durability and ageless beauty speak to our hearts, and they are what we want to serve to our customers for lifetimes of cocktail enjoyment.  
So we’re happy to stay a little bit naïve. Call us hopeful romantics.
We know we will never be a “mass” brand.  We won’t sell tens of millions of spoons to people looking for the cheapest deal possible. 
And that’s fine. 
You wouldn’t have read this far if you were one of those people, and we appreciate that kindred spirits find our tools, experience them in their homes, and share them with their friends. 

 

To the Hopeful Romantics

We want a better world.  We want to innovate.  We want to increase the beauty that calls for attention, for moments of intention.  We want to leave things better than we found them.  And we want to facilitate love of craft, love of cocktails, and love of good company. 
Standard Spoon is our tiny corner of the world where we get to do just that: To make manifest our core values in the world through obsessive design, superior usability, and impeccable aesthetics.  And we want those values to pass beyond ourselves - and even beyond our customers - to last for generations.  
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