It was 3:00 a.m. and Kristin’s brother’s friend was ringing her apartment to get access to her building. She was scared because she thought he was there to rob her. Then the phone rang, and it was her dad. “Andy shot himself.”
Her first thought was: “Is he ok?”
He wasn’t ok. He was dead and Kristin was in total shock. She just saw Andy 2 nights ago when they celebrated New Year’s Eve together. What she did the next few hours, days, weeks and months isn’t very clear because she was in survival mode, constantly asking herself all of the “what if” questions.
Kristin sees herself as an entirely different person since her brother died of suicide. It has forever changed her in ways that she is still uncovering and navigating. She had already begun designing the life she wanted, but this event increased her commitment. She’s a woman that makes things happen. She’s active not passive. “I’m not going to wait for my life to start, so I make things happen.” Kristin has changed careers, moved to a different city and bought a horse.
“I always wanted a horse, so I bought I horse.”
Even though Kristin was a creative woman, when she was deciding where to go to college, she chose to go to business school. She wanted to be financially independent and was unsure about the financial stability of a creative career.
After graduating with a business degree from Marquette University, she worked at Baird as a Financial Analyst covering the retail sector. She spent her days working in Excel spreadsheets and writing reports. It was a repetitive job that worked on a quarterly cadence.
Well into her career at Baird, that creative calling returned, and she realized that she’d rather be a designer. So she enrolled at a technical college to learn the skills she needed to bring her ideas to life. She worked full-time while she went to school. Once she finished the design program, she got a job at an agency, where she took a significant pay cut to start anew in her design career.
Her next big move was to Jockey where she started as a Senior Designer, became the Creative Director and led a team of 15 creatives. At Jockey, she did a variety of work like: Art direction, e-commerce, visual merchandise, direct mail and packaging just to name a few. Jockey was a cool experience because she got to be a hands-on Creative Director. She felt like the company was “fashion adjacent” and got to work on projects with Rachel Zoe and Tim Tebow.
While working full time at Jockey, she was also working at a beauty start-up called Wantable. It was a subscription based make-up company, where she led marketing and design. It was fun because she got to be scrappy and make decisions quickly, which allowed her to get a lot done.
After working at Jockey for 6 1/2 years, she was ready for a new challenge. She had just lost her brother and her father shortly thereafter. It was a year of extreme personal loss and she needed to find the space to heal.
Lucky for us, she found her way to Minneapolis through a business relationship with a recruiter who found her a spot on our team at Target.
Kristin bought a condo in the North Loop in Minneapolis so she walks to work everyday and that influences her personal style. She wears mostly basics and dresses in layers. Her color palette is black and white and she likes to mix feminine details with edgier things, which is the perfect expression of her personality.
She wishes there were more opportunities to dress cool because she loves fashion. Sometimes, she’ll drive to work just so she can dress up for the day.
The style of her home is where she invests most of her time. Her space is very important to her because it’s her escape and where she goes to decompress. She just finished a bathroom remodel that took 3 months, so she’s looking forward to getting back to a construction-free zone.
If a crystal ball could tell you the truth about yourself, your life, the future or anything else, what would you want to know?
I don’t know if I want to know. I feel like that’s cheating. Things happen when and why they’re supposed to. If I see the future, then I’ll screw it up by trying to control things.
What do you value most in a friendship?
Honesty and being emotionally consistent. Show up the same.
Tell me about an embarrassing moment in your life.
I was at this bachelorette party where I didn’t know most of the women. I got really drunk and ran to our party bus because it was so cold out. I tripped and fell, face-first and skidded down the sidewalk. All this happened in front of another bachelor party bus. I sprained my ankle, was bleeding and didn’t realize I was injured. The following weekend was the wedding and I had to go with a scabbed face. I’m sure everyone was looking at me thinking: “Oh, there’s that drunk girl…”
Given the choice of anyone in the world, whom would you want as a dinner guest?
Maya Angelou. She was a bad-ass woman. She grew up in extreme poverty and abuse, overcame all of it to become incredibly powerful and inspirational.
Would you like to be famous? In what way?
No. I value my private life. I recharge by being alone. It would be so stressful to be constantly scrutinized. I judge myself enough. I don’t need help with that.
Before making a telephone call, do you ever rehearse what you are going to say?
Yes, usually. My mouth moves faster than my brain and I want to make sure I make all of my points, especially if it’s a difficult conversation.
What would constitute a “perfect” day for you?
Not waking up to an alarm clock. I’m not a fan of breakfast so I’d like to go straight to the meal where I can eat pizza or lasagna. Spend the day outdoors in the sun. Have time to read. Eat sushi. Drink wine. Get a massage and go to sleep.
When did you last sing to yourself?
Oh, like all the time. I sing in the car, on the sidewalk, in the shower. When I sing to my boyfriend, I make up my own lyrics. They’re dirty, funny or all “meows”.
If you were able to live to the age of 90 and retain either the mind or body of a 30-year-old for the last 60 years of your life, which would you want?
The mind for sure.
Do you have a secret hunch about how you will die?
In some kind of stupid accident because I leap first. I’m klutzy, fall and am always in a hurry.