Digital Hub Shares Stories of Innovation and Design and Includes
“Maker Toolkit” for Entrepreneurs

BROOKLYN, N.Y.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Today home furnishings retailer West
announced the launch of a cross-channel campaign, Celebrating
Communities Across America, and westelm.com/LOCAL,
a digital experience that celebrates community by connecting customers
with local designers and makers. In addition to artist profiles, studio
visits and neighborhood tours, westelm.com/LOCAL introduces a focused
advice series, “Maker Toolkit,” that includes expert guidance on a
variety of topics for entrepreneurs and is an essential component of
West Elm’s initiative to help makers and designers grow and scale their
work. West Elm first announced plans for the “Maker Toolkit” at the
White House National Week of Making in 2015 in response to President
Obama’s call to create and support a “Nation of Makers.”

“Since our launch in 2013, West Elm LOCAL
has worked to bring regionally sourced products to customers, creating a
community-based experience each time they walk into a West Elm store,”
said Jim Brett, president of West Elm. “We’ve built relationships with
more than 500 makers and sharing their stories of creativity, craft and
community insight is our way of furthering that connection in the cities
we call home.”

West Elm’s LOCAL program focuses on providing both an expanded retail
platform and the individualized support each maker requires, from
processing their initial order to hiring their first employee. The
“Maker Toolkit” extends that support by providing helpful resources
necessary for business growth, including entrepreneurial advice from
experts on marketing, sourcing, finance and law.

“Through West Elm LOCAL we’ve worked with enough makers to understand
many of the issues they face in growing and scaling their businesses,”
said Mo Mullen, director of West Elm LOCAL. “Our goal is to bring forth
the best expert advice to help them face these challenges. And our hope
is that this guidance will spur further conversation and empower artists
within and beyond our communities.”

Featured makers and designers who will share stories about their craft,
inspirations and local communities on westelm.com/LOCAL include:

  • Matt Alexander, Holler Design, Nashville – IG: @hollerdesign
  • Ellen Van Dusen, Dusen Dusen, Brooklyn – IG: @dusendusen
  • Alyson Fox, Austin, IG: @alyson_fox
  • Karrie Kaneda, Happy Habitat, Kansas City – IG: @happyhabitat
  • Molly McGrath, Molly M Designs, San Francisco – IG: @mollymdesigns
  • Jackie Robinson, 42 Pressed, Charleston – IG: @42pressed
  • Haley Ann Robinson, Portland – IG: @haleyannrobinson
  • Tippy Tippens, Goods that Matter, New Orleans – IG: @goodsthatmatter
  • Eric Trine, Los Angeles – IG: @etrine

Shipping to homes this month, the West Elm Summer catalog showcases 25
LOCAL makers and designers of the newest products, and provides insight
into the people, inspirations, and environments behind their unique
designs. A series of accompanying videos will launch on West Elm’s You
Tube channel
and continue throughout the year. West Elm will
announce additional events and opportunities for the maker and design
community to share and promote their products for consideration in the
West Elm LOCAL collection. Makers and designers can check
westelm.com/LOCAL for updates on craft fair partnerships, as well as an
in-store open pitch night slated for Summer 2016.

About West Elm

West Elm helps customers express their personal style at home.
Headquartered in Brooklyn, NY, the brand opened its first store in 2003
in DUMBO, the neighborhood it still proudly calls home. Everything West
Elm does is designed to make an impact, from its commitment to Fair
Trade Certified, local and handcrafted products to its community-driven
in-store events and collaborations. Mixing clean lines, natural
materials and handcrafted collections from the US and around the world,
West Elm creates unique, affordable designs for modern living. The brand
operates 87 retail stores in the United States, Australia, Canada and
the UK, ships internationally to customers around the world and operates
stores in Mexico, the Middle East and Philippines through unaffiliated
franchisees. West
 is part of an active community on Facebook,
PinterestTwitter and YouTube,
and is a member of the Williams-Sonoma, Inc. portfolio of brands.


West Elm Contacts:
Nicole Sutliff
(Dru) Ortega