Kimi Design Decoupage

Kim Cumner is the founder of Kimi Design Decoupage. As an artist she is particularly focused on the art media of watercolours. Her designs are also created using the 17th Century art of decoupage. She creates original watercolour paintings and prints this onto tissue paper. This is then delicately glued onto glass vases, tea light/candle holders, bowls and coasters by recycling, up-cycling to create a beautiful, stunning effect that transforms new, old and used pieces of glassware. The finished product is fully functional and can be used as normal.

We caught up with Kim from Kimi Design Decoupage to find out more about the business. Take a look below for the interview…

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How did it all start?

My love of all things artistic began at a very young age. I worked in education for over 23 years and after a bout of illness I decided to concentrate on my artistic aspirations and began the journey of creating on glass by using the same technique as decoupage, which for me is ‘paper on glass’.

The story behind the name…

I wanted to use my childhood name Kimi because art was birthed in me at a very young age. It’s always been my favourite pastime and a brilliant form of therapy. 

The meaning of the word design is to create, fashion, execute or construct according to plan. To conceive, to plan out in the mind to have purpose and to devise for a specific function. I love to design and create from my heart and love the privilege to be able to do this!

Decoupage; this particular part of my art is to decorate objects with paper. It originated in France as a means of artistically decorating pieces of furniture with pictures. By the mid 20th century decoupage became a household name in interior decoration. The word is fashioned from the middle french decouper meaning to cut out.

Where are you based?

I live in Weston-Super-Mare and work from home amongst all my family and beautiful surroundings. My family take so much pride in my work, it belongs to us all. My husband Abbot comes with me everywhere as a major support with transporting, travelling and talking to all the lovely people we meet.

What inspires you?

I am inspired daily as I discover more and more; the beautiful colours and detail in our world and natural surroundings… the whole of creation itself! My designs on glass allow us to bring the outside in to our homes and habitats.

What is your creation process?

I begin with taking photographs or sketching flowers, animals, insects etc. I then paint with watercolours and work with this until I am happy with the final design. In order to print my design I need to anchor down the tissue paper onto a piece  of A4 sized paper with wasabi tape around the edge so I can run it through the printer. Once the print is on the tissue I can begin to rip it up into smaller manageable pieces in order to apply it very carefully and gently to the glass using a soft brush and glue. I source my glass from many places, this includes retail and charity shops and any antique or craft shops or markets. When it is complete I leave to dry then return to fill in any gaps or to add more of the design. I coat to finish with glue, when I am happy with the coating I leave to dry again. 

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What makes your brand or products unique?

I have been creating using the art of decoupage for just over 4 years. People who I meet at fairs and markets tell me they have never seen my art done in this way before. Each piece that I create is made individually and although I use the same designs over again I never put them onto the same piece of glass. This means that each product is a unique one off piece. I am always painting and creating new designs so there is no limit.

What is your next project?

I will continue to create and look for new, amazing subjects to paint and I will always be looking for old and new glassware that is unusual, functional and beautiful to use for my designs.

What are your plans for the next 12 months?

I will continue to make and create and attend as many markets, shows and fairs as possible. I am so happy to be joining The Country Living Fair for the first time in November and will design and create some lovely Christmas Robins in preparation for this.

What is your biggest achievement?

I have thoroughly enjoyed designing and creating my products for weddings, anniversaries and birthdays, including Christmas gifts. I am so proud and amazed that my art and talent has become ‘something special’ for others to give and receive. Also that so many customers love my work and come back time and time again for more. I am again so thrilled to be affiliated with ‘The Country Living Magazine Fairs’ and feel extremely honoured to do so.

What is your best-selling product?

I sell everything I make, people love it all from Agapanthus flowers to Elephants and Bee’s.

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What do you love about the Country Living Fairs?

I love all the different designs and ideas that have been made into a business. I am so thankful for the people who are dedicated to helping and to those who are willing to promote and support my small but growing business. Also for everyone who attends the fairs, who purchase our products because they just love them. I am so proud to be part of it all at the Country Living Fair.

Your three top tips for crafters and makers…

  1. Because you love your designs, ideas and craft so much-share them with others.
  2. Enjoy talking about your passion for your craft.
  3. Celebrate and believe in your own ability, be teachable and flourish.

Any advice for fledgling businesses…

Enjoy all that you do. If things become difficult work through the situation, don’t give up! Keep encouraging yourself and believe in what you do. Always be open to new ideas regarding your craft and take a few risks. Be mindful that you are learning as you go and that you are developing your professionalism and skill in all that you do.

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