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Wingnut Social Podcast #253: No Interior Design Degree? Interior Designer KD Reid Shares His Take

KD graduated with a degree in Sociology from Montclair State University. After graduating, he spent eight years providing mental health services in the LGBT community. Throughout his career, interior design was a hobby he enjoyed. But he never saw it as a lucrative career path. He would design spaces for friends and family.

At a time when Craigslist was popular, KD came across some design internship opportunities. He’d snag one here and there which allowed him to learn some interior design skills.

Then he came across Dekar Design, a woman-led design firm focusing on hospitality and commercial projects. It was his first real look into the world of interior design. They saw that he had an eye for design and immediately let him jump on projects and learn hands-on.

KD’s journey from design assistant to principal interior designer

After working with Dekar Design, KD had the opportunity to meet Mikel Welch. One of Mikel’s first projects in NYC was a Harlem restaurant called B Squared. KD had the opportunity to work on the project which led to working with Mikel for five years. He started as a design assistant, transitioned to project manager, and became a lead designer.

Mikel gave him hands-on experience and allowed him to learn other facets of interior design. KD got to dive into set design, staging, virtual merchandising, and more. This job gave him the confidence he needed to take on projects by himself. Because of COVID, many people in KD’s network wanted to invest in building out home offices, which propelled KD to start his own business.

Where will KD’s future lead? KD wants to be clear that he is not anti-education. He simply learned that it’s not necessary to find success in the industry. But KD has goals. To reach them, he’s attending Parson’s Yellow brick Design Program to take a product design course. One of his strengths is home decor, accessories, and styling. They’re the jewelry of a space, right? KD’s dream is to launch his own home accessory line.

What is KD’s advice for designers who don’t have an extensive network? What does his team look like? What marketing strategy does he employ? Listen to the whole episode to learn more!

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