We are so excited to introduce you to our newest team member, Kasha Killingsworth. This tiny yet tenacious designer comes to Campfire & Co. all the way from Florida, with a recent degree in Interior Design from VCU. When Kasha presented her thesis, a boutique hostel where she designed all aspects of the interior, including the branding, signage, and print materials, we knew it was destiny. (Designing a boutique hotel is our dream project, but you already knew that right?!) In addition to our mutual love for hospitality and branding, Kasha is an incredibly eloquent designer when sharing her passions and we knew immediately that we had to have her! As we welcome Kasha into the Camp, we thought it high time that the rest of our friends got to know her as well:
Tell us a little bit about growing up in Florida! Did you have a pet alligator?
Florida is a really strange and special slice of the U.S. I grew up in Gainesville, which is home of the Gators (University of Florida). It's a college town. It's about two hours from the beach. So no sand or palm trees in my yard, which Virginians are always disappointed to hear. No pet alligators either unfortunately, although I have hit one with my car before. And before you feel bad for it, don't -- it was about 8 feet long and somehow unscathed. It was pitch black outside. It was terrifying. Alligators are pretty commonplace in Florida and all, but it's reeeal different when you get up close and personal with one.
When you were leaving home for school, what made you choose Richmond and VCU?
Mostly the seasons. Haha. And the size. Richmond was the perfect size for me, intimidating enough for me to feel challenged and want to explore the city front to back, but small enough that I wasn't overwhelmed by the hustle and bustle of city life, which is how I felt in cities like New York and Chicago. I visited a lot of cities, and I just had a feeling about Richmond. It seemed like such a uniquely situated city that was still a little shy, but was just waiting to be realized. I think there's a lot of cultural change happening here that goes unrecognized. Richmond is noticed for its food and its tattoos, but there is definitely more than meets the eye in this city.
What are you most proud of from your college career?
Surviving the Virginia winters... I mean, I barely made it out after that blizzard this year! But in all seriousness, I just feel lucky to have made such strong connections throughout my time here and to have been able to find such a great opportunity right out of school. VCUarts is becoming more and more of a recognizable entity, even just over the past four years, and it's been cool being a part of that transition. Even some of the firms I talked to in Portland, Oregon were savvy to VCU's status in the world of art & design, which was super refreshing.
What are you most looking forward to at Campfire & Co. and in your early career in general?
I'm looking forward to experiencing Richmond as something other than a college student, as that's the only way I've experienced it so far. I think Richmond is a really special place to start a creative career because everyone here is so supportive and interested in new endeavors, whether it's a new studio space down Broad or a new gallery that's doing things a little differently. Creatives in Richmond are super friendly and are always looking out for others in their field. It's unusual to be involved with so many different communities of people that are all so interwoven. Campfire & Co. is a wonderful representation of how powerful the creative connections are in Richmond. I love the work environment here and I'm really looking forward to working with so many diverse clients... I'm excited to contribute to design which will support some really unique businesses here in Richmond. Plus, I get to work with a bunch of boss babes, and be one step closer to becoming one myself!
If you could design for any project or client, what or who would it be?
I feel like my answer for this changes every month. But for now, I would love to design a shipping container pop-up shop for a really rad business somewhere, whether it's a restaurant, a retail space, whatever. I'm a total freak for container design, that's a trend I never quite got over. They're just such interesting building blocks to design from, and have so much opportunity in terms of purpose and spatial usage: from really high-end container homes to pop-up coffee shops to temporary hotel rooms. They influenced my thesis a ton. I saw a gorgeous container restaurant in Montreal last year, and recently there was a pop-up container hotel at SXSW, which proves that the trend is still holding strong. There's just so much opportunity for compartmentalized storage on the interior and for signage and branding on the exterior of the unit, not to mention the potential for re-use and the fact that they can be located pretty much anywhere. In general, I love pop-up installations and would love to find an interesting client who wants me to design one for them.
Walk us through your perfect day in Richmond.
My perfect day in Richmond would begin down the block at Saison Market, eating their fancy chicken biscuit. Anyone who knows me well knows I am absolutely obsessed with them. It's a problem. From there I'd love to relax at the river with good friends or hang at the VMFA, either at a visiting exhibit or in the sculpture garden. Multiple coffee stops would need to be involved. And I guess I'd have to end the day with a mojito in hand at one of Richmond's new rooftop bars, as that's apparently all the rage now!
All images above are courtesy of Kasha's baller Instagram. Follow her there for more Richmond, design, and great eye brows.