Simon + Kabuki – Featured Artists

Simon + Kabuki

Simon + Kabuki

Simon + Kabuki creates their signature line of “sassy and modern” designs with the mission of helping people live inspired lives. The founders, Erin Sarpa and Ilene Guy, are firm believers that you do not have to be a designer to be stylish at home, work and play. Their hip, fun, fashion-forward collections reflect their “love your style, design your life” philosophy.

Based in Silicon Valley, Erin and Ilene each bring more than 20 years of proven design experience including time spent working with fast-paced technology clients including Google and Apple Computer. They know good design and—better yet— they understand what happens during the design implementation stage of product manufacturing and how design impacts consumer purchasing decisions. This expertise allows Erin and Ilene to help their manufacturing and retail partners create products that consumers crave. This powerhouse team has generated more than $10 million in sales and their licensed designs are featured on a wide mix of products. Their sassy and modern designs can be found on stationery, school supplies, notebooks, party supplies, home decor and fabric at retailers across the U.S., Canada and Europe including Target, Staples and KodakGallery.com, to name a few.

Simon + Kabuki Weekly Calendars, Folded Notes, Bookmarks and Flat Cards

Simon + Kabuki Weekly Calendars, Folded Notes, Bookmarks and Flat Cards

Simon + Kabuki offers a full range of on-trend, posh designs for lifestyle categories including: bedding and home décor accessories; stationery (note cards, calendars, journals); crafts (scrapbooking); apparel and accessories; home décor (rugs, artwork, photo frames); office supplies; tabletop; kitchen textiles; fabric; partyware (napkins, plates, cups); and gift wrap and gift bags.

Erin and Ilene originally met in design school and discovered that they share a mutual appreciation for chic design, a modern color palette and fresh typography. This launched a friendship and shortly after graduation, they launched a design firm. Since then, they have been working to make the world a more stylish place one fabulous design at a time.

They are also “mom-preneurs” who find inspiration from their children who know everything about what’s cool in the world. This playful, charming point of view shines through in their designs and even helped them to select a name for their firm. “Simon + Kabuki” pays homage to the artists’ first childhood pets, Erin’s cat (“Simon”) and Ilene’s rat (“Kabuki”)

Monica Lee – Featured Artist

Monica Lee

Monica Lee

Monica Lee has a passion for people, creativity and business. As an illustrator and licensed artist she has crossed paths with many creative women over the years. She has managed to combine these passions into a web TV show called Smart Creative Women.

“As much as I enjoy making art, I found it to be a bit isolating,” says Monica. “I ended up combining my gift for gab and my genuine interest in how women run their businesses. I love how women carve their own paths on their own terms. This is how Smart Creative Women was born.”

Smart Creative Women is a web show where Monica Lee interviews today’s most inspiring and creative women. “I found myself introducing people to people all the time and sharing other people’s success stories.”

“I would say to a girlfriend who was going through a rough patch, ‘Hey, check out what this gal is doing! She’s rockin’ it, and so can you!’ I finally developed a platform where I could share stories and encourage other women to be bold and believe in themselves. And I do not have to repeat myself, you can just hit replay!” laughs Monica.

The web show is not only for artists but for any woman who wants to use her creative talents to their maximum potential. “I am intentionally bringing on a mixture of creative guests.”

There are resources and interviews that advise women how to think differently about themselves and what they have to offer. “I am thrilled about how quickly the show has grown and how well-received the interviews have been.”

Monica was a shy young girl whose military father moved every three years. “I had no choice but to make friends constantly. I have always been a visual person, and I lived in a house of extroverts. I never even considered myself that outgoing until I entered college.”

After college, Monica became a flight attendant, which enabled her to travel and enjoy people’s stories even more. She eventually started freelancing in illustration and licensing her artwork.

“My art was keeping me busy enough to stop flying, but I was surprised at how much I missed people energizing me. I found myself constantly looking forward to industry events and conferences so I could talk to other creative women!”

She has found her perfect sweet spot now, mixing art and being the host of Smart Creative Women. “I adore an energetic crowd of women and hope to do some speaking in the near future, but I also like to tuck back into the quiet of my studio and pull out my paintbrushes. It’s the perfect mix for me.”

Monica Lee Products