Thursday, June 3, 2010

Thursday's Other Creative Soul: Leal Kim

This week's feature highlights a Jewelry Designer whose organic pieces are inspired by botany, horticulture and the natural world.

Leal Kim

College Student working towards a double major in Botany and Horticulture

Current City/Hometown:

Seattle, WA

Tell me about your work.
With my business partner, we run Bits n Beads by Gilliauna where we create colorful quality handcrafted jewelry and accessories.

Describe your normal day. 
My normal day consists of a strictly adhered to schedule that ensures I get both time for my studies as well as time for my craft.  At the moment, I'm currently divvying up my craft and online marketing responsibilities to a few hours here and there throughout the day. Ideally, I'd love another 6 hours in each day.  I feel my days are too short by a long shot and I'd love to find a way to fit more in that I just can't right now.

What are your passions?
Plants and nature is my top passion and interest, which I think shows itself in my choice of studies as well as in my enjoyment of working with gemstones.  Jewelry design runs a close second.  I'm not a big fan of marketing, etc.  If I could spend all of that time creating instead, I'd be a happy camper.

What are your goals?
In reference to my work with jewelry and Bits n Beads, I'd like to reach a point where we're getting a steady sale-a-day there.  

Who are your creative influences?

My business partner is my largest creative influence. She started me out creating jewelry and beading along with my twin sister when we were around the age of 9.  She's an extremely creative, talented and intelligent woman that I'm honored to know and call a friend as well as business partner.

Are there any other relevant experiences that shaped who you are today and what you do?

Being queer, I'm sure, has a huge part to do with my development in the area of jewelry design.  Mostly, because my father disapproved so strongly.  I find a great amount of joy in my work, but it was just icing on the cake during my teen years that my father twitched every time he saw me creating some beautiful, delicate piece of jewelry.

Is there anyone that you really look up to as an inspiration?
Bono.  This man is the PR king of the world.  Seriously.

What motivates you on a daily basis?
My guilty pleasure is the gemstones I buy to use in my pieces.  I love working with them and probably spend more than I should to have the ones I want to use and create with.  As for motivation.  I find I'm more motivated when things are clean and organized.  The more organized things are, the more inspired I am to pop out of bed and get going.  My partner (life partner, not business partner) Gideon also fits in this category.  He's very supportive.

What's your working style?

I'm usually one of these people that tries to plow through things to the end.   I work on one piece or one design at a time and it's not unusual that I'll start a piece and not want to move from my work table until it's finished.

What are your websites/social networking links?

Website :




1 comment:

  1. Thank you for the terrific interview. It was a pleasure.


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