Maker Spotlight: Kim Nguyen of Kimposed

Welcome to my first guest feature for Maker Spotlight. In my Maker Spotlight series, my goal is to showcase the talents of other Makers. I pride myself as a creative person, and although my main craft is in the apparel and fabric trade, I have a deep appreciation for makers of all mediums.

Today I am featuring Kim Nguyen of Kimposed. Kim is my friend, artist, and amazing "girl boss". She and I bond over our shared San Diego native-ness (we went to the same high school, but graduated two years apart) and our appreciation for dogs and avocado toast -- among other things. 

She is a skilled artist with a specialty watercolor, but she does a lot of other cool things as well. Read on to learn more!

Tell me about your business and what you do. When did you start drawing/painting, why do you “art"?

I am an illustrator that specializes in watercolor and hand lettering, but I love all things creative. The name Kimposed is a fun fusion of “Composed by Kim”, and encapsulates just that - a business created by the things that I’ve created through my artistic journey. 

I started drawing and painting at a very young age - probably as a toddler, though I don’t recollect many memories from that time. I have a photo somewhere of my 5-year-old self holding up a whiteboard featuring a still-life fruit bowl composition drawn with dry-erase markers. You could tell that even at that age, I put a lot of energy into my work and had a lot of pride in the finished product. 

What small bit of career advice would you share with your younger self? What would you tell yourself to do more of? Less of?

I would tell my yourself self to stop worrying and just do. Whether or not I fail, there’s always an opportunity to learn. 

Also, I would tell myself to be more proactive in taking opportunities to learn and master new skills. It’s never too late to learn something new.

What's your spirit animal and why?

I don’t think a single animal can represent my spirit. In one hand, my fierce thirst for knowledge, solidarity and resourcefulness resemble that of a tiger. In another, I feel like a hummingbird, rapidly beating my wings to try to do a million things at once. 

What are some of your favorite books?

I love reading. I am a huge fan of historical fiction, fantasy, and mystery thrillers. The few that stick out in my mind as great books (even from my younger years!) are the Perks of Being a Wallflower, Flowers for Algernon, Sophie’s World, Memoirs of a Geisha and Pachinko. There are probably so many more that I’ve missed, but there yah go! (Janelle: Perks and Memoirs are some of my favorites too!)

What tools and materials do you recommend to those who want to start painting and brush lettering?

Whether you’re a novice or an expert, I highly recommend investing in quality art supplies. Things like high quality paint or pens brings vibrancy to your work that would not have been there if you decided to go the cheapest route. Quality doesn’t have to break the bank! I have a blog of my favorite supplies, that are all reasonably priced. (Janelle: To learn more about Kim's favorite tools, visit her blog to read more on the topic here and here). 

What are your ideal working conditions? 

Sometimes I get hit with the inspiration stick, and that’s when I need to start painting. But, given my crazy schedule, it doesn’t always work that way! So, when I schedule out my creative time, I always set aside a few hours to really crank out some work. I have to be listening to something in the background - whether it’s music, Netflix or a podcast, there needs to be something to cut the ambient noise. Other than that, I just go!

How do you get inspired? What do you do if you ever get into a creative slump?

Mostly, I find a lot of inspiration from other artists and their creative journeys, both old and new. I can also always count on Instagram or Pinterest for inspirational works that will help put me in the mood to make something. When I’m in a real creative slump, I have to then ask myself if I’m just burnt out. That’s when I take the time to focus on myself - by reading a book, spending time with family or friends, and being a sloth for once.

What is next for Kimposed and beyond?

I have so many plans and not enough hours in the day to execute it all at once! All I can say is that there will be some pretty exciting things coming to you in 2018!


Janelle: Thank you, Kim, for joining me for the first segment of Maker Spotlight! Your creativity, drive, and positive attitude is so inspiring to me and many others. I can't wait to see what you create next!

To learn more about Kim from Kimposed and to see what else she is up to, visit her on Instagram, Facebook, and her website at!


For more reading....

Read more about Janelle of Dear Daydream Sewing & Design.

New to sewing? Consider taking a sewing class with Janelle, or read blog posts related to learning to sew.

Looking for inspiration? Read about my DIY Wedding Dress.


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