Kindah Khalidy’s secret to career happiness? Find a space where you love to work. As a kid, the Northern California native romped around outdoors, building intricate forts out of, well, nature itself. “I would spend all day stapling leaves together into a curtain or making elaborate pine needle rugs,” Kindah explains. “I was always more geared towards grand spaces than fantasy.” And when it came to her next step, she decided to enroll at the California College of the Arts solely based on the school’s airy textile studio—a space that made her feel anything but trapped inside. “My mom and I went to look at the class, and we both were like, ‘This looks like a really fun space to work in,’” she recalls. “I need that great natural light, especially when I’m painting.”
There, Kindah began creating one-off, hand-sewn garments composed of abstract shapes in unusual color pairings. “I think a lot of designers start creating because they’re trying to fill a void—they’re conjuring up something they’re not already seeing in the market,” says the designer, now living in Berkeley. “My designs are even a little bit out of my own comfort zone. My favorite reaction is when people scream and say ‘Whoa! What is that?’”—monica derevjanik
BEHIND THE SCENES
Way-Easy Guide to Painting Textiles With Kindah Khalidy
With the craft skills of a kindergartner, you absolutely design your own fabric.
Kindah Khalidy’s Totally Sweet NorCal Candy Tour
Some sugary fixes that look as awesome as they taste.