This year, KTI is celebrating its 20th anniversary, two decades of design. As we celebrate this increasingly rare accomplishment we’re taking care to reflect on our journey and give thanks to the people that matter most: friends, family, and amazing staff and clients. This is also a time for us to dream big as we look to the future .
Distinguished German industrial designer Dieter Rams once said: “Good Design is making something intelligible and memorable. Great design is making something memorable and meaningful.” At Kimberly Timmons Interiors, this is something not only embraced, but it’s been the essence of our firm since its inception.
You could say that the inspiration for KTI as we know it today started in Kimberly’s youth. She has seemingly had an eye for designing things ever since she was a child growing up in Colorado. One of her earliest memories of being inspired by design was when she started building her own little log cabin. “I would say my passion for interior design began as a little girl when my Dad helped me build a miniature log house after reading a book about ‘Miss Hickory’ I remember visualizing what her house should look like and I made all the furniture, draperies and softgoods for the log cabin,” said Kimberly. “It wasn’t very fancy, but it was nice for my first interior design project. I was probably 8 at the time.”
This attention for design detail would eventually lead her to fashion. A competitive figure skater in her youth, Kimberly fondly recalls designing and sewing her own skating outfits. At one point she dreamed of pursuing fashion design as a career, but New York City was not in the cards for this Colorado girl.
Perhaps her true design inspiration came from her father, a one-time draftsman early in his career. In fact, Kimberly took drafting in high school even though her father said at the time, “girls don’t get into drafting.” That’s when Kimberly came across the Art Institute of Colorado, graduating with honors in 1997. Her time spent here sharpened her design skills and Kimberly certainly left an imprint. She would later be inducted into the school’s Hall of Fame.
After graduation, Kimberly began her career in interior design working at Designworks, Inc. a well- known Colorado interior design firm. Kimberly remained with the firm for 10 years, working her way up from a junior designer to Design Director.
“I was responsible for merchandising over 300 model homes, many large scale sales offices and preferred guest units for many Del Webb Communities around the nation while receiving many accolades for our design work. The owner of the company was grooming me take over her 30 person firm, but after determining we had different design philosophies I decided to start my own business and began Kimberly Timmons Interiors in June of 1997, ” said Kimberly.
Thus, KTI was born in a spare bedroom in Kimberly’s home. One of KTI’s first clients, and a client to this day, was Robson Communities. KTI was brought on as a test to redesign their PebbleCreek Design Center. It was shortly thereafter that the firm won its first award for a sales center in the Denver metro area. Building repeat clients rooted in strong relationships has been invaluable in KTI’s success and longevity.
Focusing primarily on model home merchandising and large-scale sales and community centers in the early days of KTI; it was only a matter of time before the firm began to outgrow Kimberly’s home office, and Kimberly began to hire her first full-time design team. By 2002, Kimberly Timmons Interiors had moved into a 3,500 sq. foot space in downtown Denver near 24th and Lawrence. The team had also grown to two full time employees.
Over the following years, KTI grew in scope and size expanding into hospitality and high end residential units while expanding their interior merchandising business. Kimberly credits this success to staying true to her vision and dreams, both for herself and her firm. “I think a piece of advice I can offer is to hold firm to your dreams and the direction in which you want your career path to follow. Over the course of my career I have been faced with many choices. By following my beliefs I have stayed true to the path I set out for myself”, says Kimberly. “I remember one of my biggest goals was to always create unique and memorable design,” she recalls. “I have always strived to go above and beyond for our clients.” It was this commitment and vision that allowed the firm to flourish and grow.
By 2008, KTI was celebrating 10 years in business and moved into a their current 7,500 sq. foot design studio in Denver’s Golden Triangle neighborhood. It was this same year that Kimberly was inducted into Art Institute of Colorado Hall of Fame- which celebrates alumni who have demonstrated not only significant professional accomplishments, but who have also demonstrated a lifelong commitment to community service.
Community service has remained a major pillar of KTI over the years. Kimberly holds giving back very close to her heart. In 2015, KTI donated to help build a new freshwater drinking well to the village of Anh Janh, located in the Siam Reap province of Cambodia. Through a charity called Together We Can Change the World, KTI’s donation was transformed into a year-round supply of clean, sustainable drinking water for families who previously lacked a vital resource many of us take for granted. This is just one project in a long list of pro-bono efforts, and charitable donations that KTI has supported over the years. In addition to supporting the school that helped launch her career, Kimberly and her team have provided ongoing donations of staff time, meeting space and financial assistance to organizations such as St. Jude Children’s Hospital, HomeAid Colorado, the Gathering Place Women and Children’s Shelter, the Child Rescue Foundation, HBF Blitz Build and Senior Support Services, the Chelsey Hutchison Foundation and the 50+ Housing Council, assisting in the rebuild of a home damaged by Hurricane Katrina.
A short year after celebrating a decade in business, KTI teamed up with Troy Guard of the TAG restaurant group to design their first restaurant interior. The project, which was also chef Troy’s first restaurant was a resounding success. TAG Restaurant won multiple regional and local design awards, and 5280 magazine named it Denver’s Best new Restaurant. In 2014, the duo would team up again on another of Denver’s best restaurant with Guard and Grace steakhouse. 2014 also brought the finish of KTI’s first international project, the Yunling Mountain Golf Clubhouse in Kunming, China.
Two of the firm’s most recognizable accolades have come in recent years. In 2015 KTI was named one of the top women-owned businesses in Colorado; and, in 2017 was named the Care Awards Associate of the Year and NEWH top ID firm for the Rocky Mountain region.
Two full decades in design has certainly resulted in a long list of projects and recognition. But, it wouldn’t be possible without the dedication of our team. We currently have a staff of 25 amazingly dedicated, talented designers and support staff. We’ve been blessed to work with visionary clients both locally and around the nation as well as some international work. We can’t thank you enough. We understand that where we are now wouldn’t be possible without you.
Today, KTI’s culture is rooted in collaboration. We are comprised of three distinct studios within the firm – hospitality, interior merchandising, and high-end private residential. Across these divisions, KTI’s teams work together helping one another create the most appropriate, well rounded, unique solution for each project. We strive to continuously raise the bar for ourselves, and as designers, we are always pushing to do each project better, different and fresh from the project before. KTI’s cross-collaboration adds a level of innovation and drive that enhances our creativity through feedback. Everyone is allowed and expected to innovate, everyone is actively encouraged to speak up and bring new ideas to every project.
This cultural element also spills out to our relationship with clients. Not only do we collaborate in-house, but we’re collaborative with our clients, including them in the process so that they are a part of the project and the end result. It is through this process, and with a constant eye on our motto: fresh, tailored, detailed, original that we constantly push the design envelope.
As we look toward the future, we are excited and motivated to continue to make our mark on the design industry. We’ll continue to find our motivation in those special moments when we are starting a project, working on a charrette and everyone is participating, throwing out ideas. The energy, excitement and collaboration is contagious.
“As in life, design is a journey, you have to grow, evolve and be ever changing in order to stay ahead of the trends. I pride myself on making sure that our firm continues to produce exceptional design. I know I sometimes drive my designers crazy by pushing them to be the best they can be, but I think it pays off in the end when the client is happy or someone is enjoying an environment we helped create”, Kimberly Timmons-Beutner.