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Celebrating 30 Years of Kirkendall Design

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Julia flips through interior design samples; reflects back on 30th anniversary of Kirkendall Design

We are excited and humbled to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Kirkendall Design!  

A recent interview with Julia captured some of the highlights over the years.

What does the 30th anniversary of K|D mean to you?
When I think about 30 years I feel like I’m in complete denial that it has been that long!

What initially sparked your interest in interior design?
Realizing that others could not visualize a space the way that I could, I wanted to help people make their house a home! I took for granted that they could see what was not before their eyes.

What inspired you to start Kirkendall Design?
The desire to create a beautiful space for my clients to come home to and gather with friends and family. 

What do you remember about your first year in business?
I remember the amount of details that I needed to communicate to my clients without overwhelming them!

Tell us about one of your favorite “firsts” at KD?
My first, really large design project was for a client I have done many design projects with.  She believed in me and understood my vision of creating a design that was all about their family and who they were, not who I was in my own style. That was amazing!

Did you always think you would run your own business?
I have always had an entrepreneurial mindset and spirit, so I’m not surprised to own my business. 

As you reflect on the team you’ve had over the past 30 years, what comes to mind?
Wow, well I think of how many high school and college students that have worked for me over the years and where they are today.  But most of all the loyalty and dedication I have had from my staff, that is what has made K|D a team!

What are some significant challenges you have faced and overcame?
The creation of HGTV and the magic that happens in the 30 minute show has been a huge learning curve for my clients. Don’t we all want our project to be done in 30 minutes and on budget! 

What have been the highlights over the last 30 years?
Going to the different markets throughout the country and meeting some of the most amazing people. 

What are your fondest memories?
All the Christmas decorating we did as a team.  Surprisingly, it was also one of the most difficult things we did.

What has driven K|D’s success?
I believe it’s the support of the team, and the culture we have together. It helps to make us strong and pushes each other to a higher standard.

What’s been most surprising about the journey so far?
I still love what I do and I am excited to have new ways to grow K|D through The Studio at K|D. We are adding to the experience with so many new ways to serve and inspire our clients, it’s an exciting time.  

What is one piece of advice you would give yourself 30 years ago?
Pace yourself… this is going to be a long run!   

What do you see for the future of K|D?
I see an opportunity for us to create engaging experiences through K|D and The Studio at K|D!

How does it feel to be launching a new business while celebrating the 30th anniversary of K|D?
It feels like the perfect time to start something new and fresh that will serve and inspire our clients and the community. All while K|D continues to grow and thrive as a business.

Living room design by Kirkendall Design, interior design firm in Tulsa, OK

Comments from the K|D Team

the kirkendall design team

“When I started, my desk was in Julia’s home office. It was so exciting to move to our first warehouse and really exciting to move to the new location at The Studio at K|D. It is amazing to watch Julia’s visions turn into a reality.  With that being said, I do have to reign her in every so often. But, I am thankful for the opportunity to be a part of it all!”
– Lora, Business Manager

“Much of who I am today is directly related to growing up in an environment, like K|D, that gave positive feedback and encouragement to strive to become a leader and a better person. I am honored to be lucky enough to call K|D my family.”
– Max, Construction Supervisor

“Julia has a knack for creating meaningful experiences, not only for her clients but also for her employees. Over the years, she put together numerous celebrations, including birthdays, weddings, the arrival of little ones, holidays and countless other milestones. Always so much fun!”
– Heather, Former Marketing Director

The true magic of our business lies within our amazing team. Over the years, the K|D team has been the driving force behind our success. As we celebrate our 30th anniversary, it’s not only about the work; family comes first and our team has become like family.

5 Incredible Women Designers You Need to Know

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In honor of American Business Women’s Day this month, I thought it would be fun to highlight a few of the incredible women I have had the pleasure of meeting through the interior design industry. Of course there are many talented women in design, but these five women have served as an inspiration to me and I am grateful to have them in my life. Please take a minute to check them out on Instagram and consider following them if you feel inclined.

Traci Connell
Traci is one of the most talented and respected designers in the industry. She is known for her luxurious and elegant designs, as well as her philanthropic work within the Dallas design community.  Our team took a trip to Dallas last year, where they got to meet Traci and see her work firsthand at the Kips Bay Decorator Show House.
Instagram: @traciconnellinteriors

Bria Hammel
Bria is someone I’ve known for almost seven years and I am continually in awe of her creativity and bravery. She has an ambitious vision and is also very down-to-earth and easy to be around. She has been featured in Traditional Home, HGTV Magazine, Forbes, Oprah Daily, Architectural Digest, House Beautiful, Martha Stewart Living…just to name a few!  Additionally she owns a delightful store, Brooke & Lou, which you can explore online here.
Instagram: @briahammelinteriors

Christi Spangle
Christi is a force to be reckoned with. She and I share the same enneagram type– We’re both eights! She has more tenacity than anybody I know and I truly admire her for that. Additionally, she doesn’t take herself too seriously and will play with her food at fancy restaurants! Everyone needs that friend who provides much needed comic relief at times!
Instagram: @barbourspangle
Staci Steidley
Staci is an immensely gifted interior designer who has also proven to be a masterful business owner. It is interesting to note that she never initially thought she would enjoy the business side of things, but she now leads a team of designers much greater than she ever dreamed possible. In addition, she has won multiple design awards. For all of my Oklahoma friends who bleed orange, Staci got her interior design degree from Oklahoma State University.
Instagram: @studiosteidley

Ginger Curtis

Last but certainly not least, Ginger is a remarkable friend who knows no bounds when it comes to love and kindness.  This talented lady purchased an old firehouse, which she renovated into a design/event center now known as the Urban Firehouse.  As you can imagine, she’s an incredible visionary, blazing (pun intended!) a path for interior design.
Instagram: @urbanologydesigns