In 2009, college friends Seth Rosen and Mike Salguero quit their jobs in real estate to relaunch CustomMade. As the new owners of the business, the pair set out to transform the maker-centric site from one that sold marketing services to one that connected artisans and consumers. Despite being “completely and uniquely unqualified to pursue a consumer Internet business,” Rosen and Salguero revamped CustomMade, opening membership to jewelers, furniture builders, glassblowers, ceramicists, and all kinds of custom makers.
Today, you can have pretty much anything custom made on the site, be it an engagement ring, dining table, or painting. If you have an idea, post it on the project board and makers will send you proposals. Once you’ve chosen who you’d like to work with, CustomMade will assist you in managing your project until it’s completed. So far, the Cambridge, Massachusetts-based company has facilitated over 2,700 transactions and is helping more than 3,300 makers run their independent businesses.