Lots of people would love to express their creativity. But many aren’t sure where to start. In those cases, it can help to have a sort of template or guide.
Maya X Kiwi aims to provide this for people through a series of watercolor kits and DIY options. The shop has been a labor of love for its owner and feline namesake. Read more about the business, its origin story, and its unique approach to spurring creativity in this week’s Small Business Spotlight.
What the Business Does
Sells DIY watercolor kits.
Founder Maya Modi told Small Business Trends, “Each kit includes all the instructions, coordinated paint palette, practice guide, a water brushpen, and a pre-outlined drawing of the design. You don’t even have to draw anything!”
Offering everything beginners need.
Modi says, “Focusing on individual designs that you would want to hang in your home and packaged in a cute convenient way, these DIY Watercolor Kits are designed for beginners. In my experience as a teacher and professional artist, the biggest obstacle that people have when painting is drawing. That’s why I figured out a way to have all the designs pre-outlined (like a coloring book) so the rest is simply painting! I’ve found that my customers end up LOVING their artworks once they are finished because its simple. Since they love their painting, they become more confident in their creative skills!”
How the Business Got Started
After noticing a need with workshop clients.
Modi explains, “After teaching dozens of local watercolor workshops, I noticed that many people would end up canceling their RSVP at the last minute. One day, a group of moms who could no longer attend asked if I would mail them the workshop. Of course, I had no idea how to do that.
Fast forward several months later and I had developed the DIY Watercolor Kit- a convenient solution for a workshop on the go! Specifically designed for people who want to explore a new creative skill but don’t have the time, budget, or confidence to try on their own.”
Making a difference for customers.
Modi says, “A few weeks ago, I got an order for a DIY Watercolor Kit. I get orders weekly, but this one was special. The customer had requested a note be packaged and mailed with the Kit. It read, “I hope this kit helps you stay creative while you’re on bedrest!”
“The customer had bought the kit for her pregnant best friend who was getting antsy on bedrest! It made my heart so full. I felt like my product was making a legitimate difference in someones life!”
Quitting her day job.
Modi adds, “Leaving my stable day job to focus on my business was the scariest leap I’ve ever taken. If it weren’t for my supportive friends and family, I could be homeless! Instead, my business is growing more successful every day!”
How They’d Spend an Extra $100,000
Growing a team.
Modi says, “I would hire my former art students as my apprentices because that would make my journey complete.”
Kiwi the cat.
Modi explains, “My company is named after my cat, Kiwi, who I rescued 5 years ago. She is the resident manager and inspects everything I design and ship out!”
“Creativity is Intelligence Having Fun” Albert Einstein
Modi explains, “I love this because so many people they can’t “do art” because their brains are too analytical. I want to break this boundary for the world.”
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Images: Maya x Kiwi