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Earth and Salt: BTV's Modern Adult Store

Help build Burlington's modern adult store, featuring body safe and affirming sexual wellness products, and expansive sex education.

$2,677
pledged of$10,000 goal
47
18Days Left
Fund it
Campaign Ends on August 18, 2021

Project Description

It's time for Earth and Salt to come home, babes!

 

Earth and Salt, a pleasure-centered, holistic adult store specializing in body-safe sexual wellness products and expansive education, is coming to downtown Burlington, Vermont, and I need your help in making it the most lush, affirming, and pleasurable space it can be. 

Entrance to Earth and Salt

 

The Vision

 

My name is Beth Hankes, and I'm the owner of Earth and Salt. Earth and Salt came to me like a lightning bolt during a trip to Burlington in late 2019. This beautiful town, with amazing small businesses and a progressive community, had no adult store that would be fun to visit with my partner. I was shocked, but within three days of this realization, I decided I would build the shop I had hoped to find here.

I want Burlington (and all of Vermont . . . and all of New England) to have a safe, supportive space where folks can see and touch high quality, body-safe sex toys, lube, and accessories from brands that have been vetted for their business practices, as well as gender expression gear, BDSM products, sex aides and positioners, apothecary goods, and BOOKS (alllllll the books) on sex, love, relationships, body health, and pleasure. I want to provide a space where folks can find knowledgeable guidance in choosing products based on individual desire and need, and create a community space for learning, support, and pleasure.

 

Floor plan for the store
Floor plan for the store
Rendering of store interior by Bjorn Peterson
Rendering of store interior by Bjorn Peterson
Origin Story

 

Because Earth and Salt is about PLEASURE, not just sex; pleasure in our bodies, pleasure experienced with others, and the pleasure found in acceptance and celebration. While this business came to me from a visit to Burlington, I quickly realized that this was also an idea and a desire that came from my ongoing transformation about my own pleasure, or lack there of. How I wanted to access it but struggled to do so due to ingrained cultural norms and media messaging. How common life experiences like illness and personal growth deeply affected my ability and desire to feel pleasure. And just how damn little I felt like I could talk with friends about what was going on for me, how I was changing, and get help making sense of what I was feeling.

And I know this is true for so many others. 

 

Earth and Salt products
Photo Credit: Isora Lithgow

 

Beyond Adult Store Basics

 

Earth and Salt also serves the need for support and knowledge in the pursuit of pleasure, since pleasure is equally a mental and emotional experience as it is a physical one. So I, and a delightful cadre of sex educators and sexuality professionals, will provide inclusive educational resources that contextualize sex and pleasure as a part of daily life. Through these resources you will be empowered to better know your body, your desires, and how to advocate for yourself in the bedroom and beyond. Because at the end of the day, my goal with Earth and Salt is to see all people free to live in their pleasure, whatever that may mean for that person individually. 

And in meeting the mission of seeing all people free to live in their pleasure, special attention must be paid to supporting and giving voice to historically marginalized communities, who have been prevented from fully experiencing their pleasure for so long. I intentionally partner with business owners and sex educations from historically marginalized groups, making sure that at least 50% of my collaborators and vendors are from a historically marginalized group. 

 

Earth and Salt blog posts
Blog posts from collaborators
 

So, BIG GOALS. But the best goals I could hope to serve with my time and my business. I hope you'll join me in creating something that will serve the communities in Burlington and Vermont (and beyond!)

 
The Money Details

 

Now, onto the moneyz. The goal of $10,000 will be used entirely for building out the store, and will be used for some or all of the following purchases:

  • Point of Sale system
  • Furniture
  • Displays
  • Paint
  • Artwork
  • Decor
  • Inventory

The more I raise, the more the Earth and Salt brick and mortar store will be satisfying and stimulating experience for you and other folks who come through the doors. 

 

About the Owner

 

My name is Beth Hankes, my pronouns are she/her, I am an artist, sensualist, devoted fan of 60s and 70s rock, sex education certification candidate through the Institute of Sexuality Education and Enlightenment, and recovering corporate stooge. My path to find myself after years of self-repression and sexual rebirth inspired me to open Earth and Salt, a business that I hope will help folks return to their innate sensuality and sexuality, whatever that looks like for them. I joyfully look forward to breaking stereotypes, providing vital sex education to my communities, championing other business owners and sexuality professionals, and selling a lot of sex toys.

Beth Hankes
Photo Credit: Isora Lithgow

 

Thank you!

 

Thank you SO MUCH for helping Earth and Salt come home to Burlington. It's my dream, but it's a store for all of us. Thank you for joining this community and building a supportive, celebratory space for folks to explore their sexuality, sensuality, and connection to pleasure in its many forms. 

Updates

The Campaign FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions:

  • When do you expect the store to open?

    • August 2021!

  • Where will the store be located?

    • Ground floor of Karma Bird House in Burlington, VT, Suite 113. 

  • What brands will you carry?

    • So many! You can see current offerings on the online store, which will be mostly replicated in the brick and mortar store. But in short, the brands we're most excited to be carrying include Dame, Crave, Chakrubs, Desirables, We-Vibe, Avant, Je Joue, Fun Factory, Lora DiCarlo, SpareParts, Sliquid, Slippery Stuff, Hot Thang Candles, and our local friends, Conscious Homestead, Bee Love Herbals, Eros and Arch, and Dark Desires.

  • When will rewards be shipped?

    • Most rewards will be out by the end of August. If you're getting a 1:1 shopping session, scheduling demands may require scheduling out into September. 

 

 

Sally
07/31/2021
A Luscious Thank You
$50
Preeti
07/29/2021
Monetary Contribution
$50
t2
07/26/2021
Monetary Contribution
$50
Erin Wederbrook Yuskaitis
07/26/2021
1:1 Virtual Shopping Session
$100
Reb H.
07/21/2021
Monetary Contribution
$10
07/20/2021
1:1 Virtual Shopping Session
$100
Isora
07/20/2021
A Little Somethin' Somethin'
$25
Asaf Gaon
07/18/2021
Monetary Contribution
$15
Michael Warren
07/16/2021
Monetary Contribution
$10
Natanya Apfelbaum
07/16/2021
Monetary Contribution
$10
Monetary Contribution

Thank you so much! Any dollar amount helps bring Earth and Salt to Burlington.

20 Supporters
Select this reward
25.00 USD
A Little Somethin' Somethin'

Donate $25, and get a digital $10 store credit (usable in person or online) and an inspiring quote from one of the great writers on sex and relationships.

45 Left
5 Supporters
Select this reward
50.00 USD
A Luscious Thank You

Donate $50, and get a $20 store credit (usable in person or online) and a personalized thank you postcard. Please submit your mailing address in the "Message to Entrepreneur" box.

37 Left
13 Supporters
Select this reward
100.00 USD
1:1 Virtual Shopping Session

A 30 minute 1:1 virtual shopping session with Beth Hankes, owner of Earth and Salt, plus a $40 shopping credit (usable online or in person).

8 Left
7 Supporters
Select this reward

About the Entrepreneur

Rewards

Monetary Contribution

Thank you so much! Any dollar amount helps bring Earth and Salt to Burlington.

20 Supporters
Select this reward
25.00 USD
A Little Somethin' Somethin'

Donate $25, and get a digital $10 store credit (usable in person or online) and an inspiring quote from one of the great writers on sex and relationships.

45 Left
5 Supporters
Select this reward
50.00 USD
A Luscious Thank You

Donate $50, and get a $20 store credit (usable in person or online) and a personalized thank you postcard. Please submit your mailing address in the "Message to Entrepreneur" box.

37 Left
13 Supporters
Select this reward
100.00 USD
1:1 Virtual Shopping Session

A 30 minute 1:1 virtual shopping session with Beth Hankes, owner of Earth and Salt, plus a $40 shopping credit (usable online or in person).

8 Left
7 Supporters
Select this reward