Artists ~ Kim Valente ~ Westerly

Owner’s name: Kim Valente
Shop name: Brick + Beam Studio

1. Tell us about your business.
I create home décor products including art prints, paintings and holiday decorations which I sell on Etsy and at local marketplaces.

2. Is there a story behind the name of your business?
The name of my business was created for my interior design studio – based on basic building elements. I recently combined my home décor products with my interior design firm.

3. How did you get started?
I’ve been working as an interior designer for 10+ years and I’ve been creating home décor products for about 5 years. My full time job is very creative but making artwork and painting utilizes a different set of creative skills. In my spare time I started making digital art prints and painting as a creative release for myself and then I opened an Etsy shop.

4. Who is your target customer?
My target customer range is pretty varied but it tends to be folks in their 20s to 40s – certain items are more popular with certain demographics.

5. What do you love about what you do?
For me, creating my products is relaxing and fun. I can create whatever I’d like, whenever I’d like. I find inspiration in my everyday life and then I start making.

6. What’s your best seller?
My best seller at local marketplaces is my “You’re My Lobster” prints and notecards. The best seller in my Etsy shop is the prints that say “So Fresh and So Clean Clean."

7. How long have you been in Rhode Island?
I was born and raised in RI. I went to college in Massachusetts and came back to RI after I graduated.

Then I lived in San Diego for a little while and came back to RI a few years ago. I’m a Rhody girl at heart.

8. What do you {heart} about Rhode Island?
Everything! I love the quirky things that make RI so unique – coffee milk, Dels, directions based on things that aren’t there anymore, etc. I love that a short drive can take you from the city to the middle of nowhere and even though it’s a small state you can always find something to do.

9. Any advice for people wanting to get started in the business?
Just jump in! Find your passion and start creating. Setup an Etsy shop, get on Instagram and build a following, exhibit at local marketplaces, etc. RI has a wonderful, supportive, creative community.


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