Today we’d like to introduce you to Asia Clayborne.
So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I was exposed early on to art as a child. Growing up in a home surrounded by the most intricately carved African and Caribbean sculptures, and attending a very prestigious art center in St. Louis (COCA). It’s always been something deeply rooted within me. I didn’t realize it back then, but my mother and her love of art, laid the foundation for the woman I am today.
I tried my hand at a more traditional route. Going to college, working in corporate America. I think ultimately, my “do it yourself”, free spirit was always longing for something more fulfilling; something to call my own. This creative path really began to reveal itself, after having 3 beautiful children. More than anything, I wanted them to see through me, how possible it is to follow your dreams.
Rain Sky Home Decor was launched in 2018 in St. Louis, MO. We have very humble beginnings. Like many small businesses, we built our brand from the ground up. No start-up capital, no funding, no business loans. Just the passion and commitment to create something original.
Our first year in business was more or less a year of discovery for us. A year of trial and error. Learning as we go how to run a business while juggling motherhood and everyday life. As a small owned brand, you learn quickly what works and what doesn’t work. The products and content you are putting out into the world if people will respond or love what you are creating.
In 2019, we launched our Original Africa Coasters Collection. We launched this collection during Black History Month to celebrate the beauty of our culture. The response was like no other. To go from struggling to make sales to hitting almost 10k for that month. It was in that moment, I knew we found our niche as a brand. Our Africa Coasters collection helped us find our lane and taught me people will always respond to authenticity.
Has it been a smooth road?
We’ve faced many challenges along the way. Even after having such a successful launch back in 2019 with our Africa Coasters Collection, the work didn’t stop there. You will have your highs and lows as you are growing your brand. I had to overcome many personal struggles: financially, mentally, and health-wise. I had moments where I questioned if I was on the right path, moments of doubt. I did not see the opportunity for growth and I felt limited in the opportunities surrounding me.
In mid-2019, I made a decision to uproot my family. I sold everything I owned and moved to Atlanta. It wasn’t an easy transition. You are in a new city; you have to reestablish yourself, make those meaningful connections. But, I was determined to integrate myself into these new communities. Atlanta has always been a city that I felt was full of culture and opportunities for young creatives.
In February 2020, we attended our first business event in Atlanta. It was essential for us to get out into the local scene, let people see us face to face, get to know us, and give back to our community. Then, March and Covid-19 came with a force that impacted families and businesses around the globe, including ours. It was a time of uncertainty and many unknowns. Just as we were getting settled and felt we were on our way to establishing our brand here in Atlanta, the world stopped. Businesses were closing left and right. All of our plans to attend local events to create brand awareness came to a complete halt. I had to quickly re-strategize and focus solely on building an online presence. I believe it was our ability to pivot in the midst of chaos that propelled us to new heights, even during a Pandemic.
Our business has since been featured by AT&T Business, Buzzfeed, and Cafemom. We also successfully partnered with Black Restaurant Week for their 2020 nationwide campaign. We are excited to see what the future holds as we continue for new product releases and grow our brand.
We’d love to hear more about your business.
We are known mostly for our Africa Coasters Collection. Our collection is sculpted by hand, right here in Atlanta. An original collection, unlike any other. By sculpting our pieces in the shape of Africa, we have turned a mundane household item into a one of a kind art piece that celebrates culture. Our techniques are exclusive to our brand, and it has allowed us to create custom pieces for people around the world to celebrate a culture that is unique to them!
Is our city a good place to do what you do?
Atlanta is the mecca for small businesses and creatives, I believe that whole-heartedly. The energy here is different. When I first moved here, it felt like I was walking into a room blindfolded. Then upon removing that blindfold, seeing a room full of people that are welcoming, happy, and eager to see you win. A room full of strangers that want to celebrate you! I’ve made so many meaningful connections since living here. Connections that I know helped uplift my brand.
- Africa Coasters Collection starting at $30
- Custom Coasters Collection starting at $40
- Website: https://www.rainskyhome.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/rainskyhome
Rain Sky Home Decor LLC