One of my favorite things about owning a boutique is getting the chance to work with local artists ranging from jewelry, art, ceramics, apothecary, and so much more. Showcasing their work in our beautiful boutiques and sharing it with our customers is such a dream for me. They make our boutique look and feel so special and foster a sense of community.
I met Kalla, the owner and artist of KUDD:KRIG, a couple years ago and was thrilled that she was based in Long Beach. Her beautiful blankets, pillows and wall hangings immediately caught my attention - I had never seen an artist paint on textiles the way she does. Her minimal style is modern and so striking to the eye, and fits right in with my style at home and in-store.
Recently, I went to visit her studio and fell in love with her newest collection, and knew our customers would love them this holiday season. During that visit, I noticed she had painted some ceramic pots and asked her if she would do a collection for us. (We are plant obsessed at Prism and are always looking for new ways to display them.) She happily agreed and we’re lucky to be carrying a small collection of hand-painted ceramics at our Long Beach and Costa Mesa stores.
Scroll to see photos of Kalla’s gorgeous Long Beach studio and learn about her process, inspiration, and more. And join us Saturday, November 24th at our Shop Local Holiday Block Party to meet Kalla, shop her work, and celebrate small businesses in our community.
The popularity of fiber arts has absolutely exploded in recent years. What initially got you interested in textile design?
I’ve always been drawn to textiles. My background is in fashion, visual merchandising, buying and management. Painting and making things to translate a feeling has always been a passion of mine, as well. I think when my interest evolved from Fashion to Home, I wasn’t feeling the same inspiration and “have to have” moments I was so familiar with in the world of clothing. So, I started making pieces that were interesting to me. There was an immediate feeling of connectedness that kept me making more.
Tell us about your path to becoming a full-time artist. What made you make that first big leap?
The deeper I became immersed in designing home decor, the less interest I had in the job I went to every day. There were years of dreaming and talking about making that jump, and then one day I guess I felt brave enough to take the risk.
What was the inspiration behind your latest collaboration with Prism Boutique and how did it come about?
Dayna was visiting my studio and our conversation shifted to a pot I’d painted. From there, it was a no brainer. Putting Prism’s love of objects and their fresh aesthetic with my abstract landscape shapes was a seamless pairing. The palette we used is largely reflective of their modern, warm and approachable style. I think the best collaborations come about effortlessly, and this was a great example of two loves coming together naturally.
What are some ways you’re incorporating your core beliefs into your brands and how important is that to you?
I believe your home experience greatly affects every other facet of your life and that the space you return to each day should recalibrate you. It’s the one place in the world that is just for you. I think such a space should be filled with special pieces that not only represent you, but inspire you. I try to design products that are calming, yet thought provoking - practical yet luxurious. We use eco-friendly and sustainable materials as much as possible, and will continue to move in this direction. We are also 100% cruelty free, because I believe kindness and beauty are synonymous.
How do you approach a project that not only needs to look beautiful, but be super functional as well?
There’s always an element of compromise, but luckily with textiles, there are two sides. My approach is also heavily rooted in functional comfort and luxury, so I’m always working toward that balance.
It sounds like you balance a lot of different projects. Do you have any tips for being your most productive?
Lists! Put the things you don’t want to do at the top (for me, accounting would fall in this category.) Knock them out when you’re fresh, and the rest of the day will be a breeze.
Also, realistically mapping out timelines for days/projects. Give yourself time blocks for each task so you are accountable. Otherwise.. Scroll city.
Where do you find inspiration? What do you do to stay creatively inspired?
Nature, Architecture, and Fashion are endless sources of inspiration. Staying creatively inspired for me means being well rested, and taking moments to look around and really consider what I’m seeing.
Your studio is super cute - and it’s right down the street from our Long Beach location. Who are some of your favorite fellow Long Beach designers?
Thanks so much! Long Beach is such a hidden gem of creatives doing interesting things. A couple of favorites that have captured my heart are Eric Trine of Amigo Modern, and Laura Cornman of Settlewell.
What advice to you have for young creatives or those just starting out in their career?
Find your own voice/style/medium. Keep experimenting! It takes time to get to know yourself as an artist, so invest this time and take risks. Try not to focus on things turning out exactly how you planned, and be open to recognizing the growth that can happen through that process.