When a company creates items specifically for your home, it’s only natural for their work environment to feel like home. Ariel Kaye, founder of Parachute Home, took us inside her kitchen & showed us her secret recipe before sharing the final product with her team (& us, luckily). While her job description at Parachute doesn’t necessarily call for cooking, Ariel & her team have made it common practice in the office. “We share recipes a lot at the office,” Ariel says, “because we have a ton of people who love to cook. People will bring in recipes & things they’ve cooked.” For Ariel, there is no “normal” day in the office. She says, “Some days I’m making stone fruit galettes & some days I’m dealing with investors.” On other days, Ariel & her team wrap themselves in blankets during staff meetings to test a new fabric. She chooses to focus most of her energy on product design & the consumer side of the business, though it wasn’t long ago that Ariel, a young entrepreneur trying to grow her brand, had only herself to get things done.
Ariel left her job in February of 2013 to pursue the idea that would eventually become Parachute. “Everything was a challenge,” she says. “I was doing everything that I hadn’t done before: figuring out how to buy boxes, how to get products from Italy to America without breaking any laws.” Despite the learning curve with the logistics, Ariel always felt confident in the vision she had for her company. “The idea for Parachute & building this home brand & evolving from just selling sheets was always in my original, super unattractive PowerPoint presentations. The problem that we are trying to solve & the ways in which we were doing it were really consistent.” However, despite a clear vision and passionate founder, the company experienced some natural growing pains. Ariel looked to join an accelerator program to help her find investors, but she was told the company needed to grow more before she could join. After convincing the program that she needed money before she could grow the company any more, she was allowed into the program where she connected with investors, mentors, & like-minded professionals who, Ariel says, made working until two in the morning bearable. While Parachute, like any rising business, still experiences some occasional bumps in the road, Ariel says the difference is that she now has a team behind her to back her up, support her, & problem solve with her.
Despite the sleepless nights, countless sales pitches, & constant questioning of her decisions along the way, Ariel has no doubts anymore that it was all worth it. “Even today,” she says, “When I meet a stranger & they’re like, ‘Oh, I love Parachute! I sleep on your sheets!” Ariel still can’t help but smile.
With a number of collaborations to look forward to, new brand categories added seasonally, & storefronts opening regularly, Parachute is continuing to make its presence known. Regardless of the brand’s success, Ariel & her team strive to keep the company feeling like family instead of work, & they always remind themselves that their collective goal is to tell an authentic story through their product. “I realized it was this whole component about sleep, wellness, & health that had never been talked about with sheets,” Ariel says. Thanks to a rapidly growing company, a work environment that supports one another, &, not to mention, the comfort of their very own sheets, we suspect that Ariel & her team can rest easy at night.
- for the crust:
- 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for rolling
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup non-hydrogenated vegetable shortening
- ¼ cup ice-cold water, as needed
- one egg for wash
- for the filling:
- ¼ cup sugar
- 3 tablespoons cornstarch or all purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 large peaches or plums, peeled, pitted, and sliced
- for the toppings:
- maple syrup for brushing
- granulated sugar for sprinkling
- In a food processor, add flour, sugar, & salt. Pulse until ingredients are combined. Add shortening & pulse until mixture has a crumbly consistency. Add ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time, & pulse until dough just holds together. You may not need to use all of the water. Do not over process.
- Form the dough into a disc & wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 10 minutes.
- Remove the dough from the refrigerator & unwrap it. Roll dough to ⅛-inch thickness between two layers of lightly floured parchment paper. Using a sharp knife, cut the dough into a circle using a 9-inch round cake pan or plate for a template. Refrigerate the rolled out disc for 10 minutes.
- In medium bowl, whisk together sugar, flour, & cinnamon. Add vanilla & peaches, & toss mixture until peaches are coated.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Remove the dough disc from the refrigerator & fan peaches, overlapping, in a circular shape in the center of the disc, leaving a 1-inch border. Fold the 1-inch border of dough over the edges of the peaches & refrigerate for 15 minutes.
- Transfer unbaked galette to the prepared baking sheet, brush with maple syrup, & sprinkle with sugar. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes until the peaches look shriveled & crust is lightly browned. Let the galette cool for at least 5 minutes before serving. Serve & enjoy!
9-inch round cake pan or plate
Favorite restaurants at the moment:
What is one brand you admire?
“Imperfect Produce I think are doing something really cool,” notes Ariel in regards to the company who delivers produce that doesn’t qualify by stores aesthetic standards to consumers’ homes so it does not go to waste.
Household food staples?
Avocado, tortillas, vegan cheese, fruit, popsicles, eggs, kales, & greens
Favorite place for groceries?
“I love the farmers markets during the weekend, but can never get there during the week. Otherwise I’m between Whole Foods & Erewhon.”
“Probably opening our first retail store. Then also opening our store in New York,” Ariel says, noting that the idea for Parachute was conceived in New York. “Luckily there were a lot of pinch-me moments. You work hard every day to make all of these things happen.”
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*Images via Shannan Leigh for Public Lives, Secret Recipes.
**Editing by Rob Lee.
***Thank you Imperfect Produce for sponsoring this post.