My name is Kathleen and I’m the owner and artist of Kathleen Collins. I started painting custom gifts in college, where I was an art major and worked at a Greek boutique. Ever since, I’ve loved creating custom gifts of all kinds. I decided to build my business, but wanted my business name to be something with meaning and purpose. I chose Kathleen Collins to honor my grandmother, my namesake. I was blessed to be the youngest grandchild, who spent many a Friday night at sleepovers with my grandparents. Nonie and Popie showered me with attention and love. Kathleen was a fiercely spirited woman with grand stories and gems of simple wisdom. She taught me about polishing my nails ( red for her and ice water to set.) She taught me how to play cards and snuck me sips of her cocktails at country club brunches. She taught me about fashion and how to pull a Barbie outfit together like nobody’s business. I played fashion show in her closet while she adoringly watched me parade around in her early 1980s abstract sweaters with shoulder pads. She and Popie would take my family to Nuevo Laredo, a nearby Mexican border town, to bet on the doggies at the race track and shop the mercados. The sights, sounds, music, and energy was thrilling as a young child. I loved all the colors and designs that the beautiful dresses had hanging in each tienda. She also taught me to stitch. She would have me practice on her old cloth napkins. It seemed like an old fashioned activity, but I practiced to please her. Funny how things come full circle. I kept these memories of her and Popie, both deceased, as special private gems of my childhood. These incredibly special times shaped me to love the things I love, and to create the things I love to create. So, I honor Kathleen Collins and pray I make her proud with all that I do and all that I become. I am blessed beyond measure to have my family who inspires me daily to never give up on my dreams.