West Elm Launches Campaign To Support Local Makers

West Elm has launched a cross-channel campaign, “Celebrating Communities Across America,” and its Local digital platform, which 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 guidance on a variety of topics for entrepreneurs, which is a component of West Elm’s initiative to help makers and designers grow and scale their work.

“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.”

The 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 retailer noted. The Maker Toolkit extends that support by providing 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. Our hope is that this guidance will spur further conversation and empower artists within and beyond our communities.”

Shipping to homes this month, the West Elm summer catalog will showcase 25 Local makers and designers of new products, and provides insight into the people, inspirations, and environments behind their designs. A series of accompanying videos will launch on West Elm’s You Tube channel and continue throughout the year.

West Elm’s video about the Local program can be viewed here: