October 4, 2013 • Kim Baker
1. When and how did you start working in this business?
My path to paper has been rather circuitous. I first started designing ceramic tiles in 1996, doing backsplashes and murals for designers and showrooms. I did this out of our kitchen at first, and rented kiln space to fire the tiles. Very soon after that I decided to turn the tiles into wall hangings in order to make a “gifty” product. This gave me more selling venues and by this time my husband joined me in the business and we set up a studio.
For the last 15 years we have been operating a ceramic tile and gift company, selling our tiles both to gift retailers, such as Anthropologie, and to tile showrooms. In 2008 we came to the attention of Barnes & Noble who wanted to use our images for stationery. Since then we have also worked with Galison, Papyrus, iPop and Urban Outfitters. This year (2013) we launched our own stationery line.
2. What is your signature style?
Simple, folk-art inspired imagery from a modern perspective. Folk art is such a broad term, but to me it means using simple geometric elements to build images in an intuitive way.
3. What are your most popular stationery offerings?
Our Birds and Leaves, Feathers, Dots and Moon sets.
4. Please share the direction your line will be taking.
I will always have a painterly, folk look to my work, but I try to keep it fresh by updating the references. Right now I am very happy to see so many folk florals and craft influences being used in fashion. It's a great time to play with geometric elements and loose washes and I'm excited to try a slightly more sophisticated direction.
5. What are your top three tips for success?
I think Woody Allen said 80 percent is just showing up, and I would say that is true.