Five Under Forty: Julie Riggin

Julie Kay Design Studio | Colorado Springs

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A career in interior design was fated for Julie Riggin, owner of Julie Kay Design Studio in Colorado Springs. “My mother inspired my path as an interior designer. She is so very creative, and I grew up surrounded by an abundance of seasonal decorations and homemade crafts,” says Riggin. “She did an amazing job at creating a happy home for us.”

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Photo by Robert Radifera Photography

Riggins’ love for all things creative started at an early age and led her to pursue a career in design after graduating from the University of Missouri, Columbia with a BS in architectural studies. After working in design at prestigious firms in Chicago, she founded her own firm.

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Photo by Robert Radifera Photography

In 2020 Riggin moved with her family to Colorado Springs, and she recently opened a studio designed for personalized client interaction. “I see it as my job to really get to know my clients genuinely so I can create a unique and highly personal space,” she tells us.  “My bespoke interior design and space-planning services are specifically designed to work with families like yours, so you can find the most joy and possibilities within your current reality.”

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Photo by Robert Radifera Photography

Creating a comfortable home for military families is also one of Riggins’ passions. “I am married to an Army guy, so I understand the challenges of living a military lifestyle,” says Riggin. “Whether it’s your forever home or temporary housing, you deserve to live in a space you feel proud to call home.”

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Photo by Robert Radifera Photography


“For me, the challenge has been in having to open up my business multiple times in multiple states because of our military moves, although it has been exciting! I feel like a pro at starting over at this point.”


“Bold colors and contrast are certainly coming into the trend spotlight after a few years of a neutral palette.”


“Designing for a military family is not necessarily different from others; however, the emotions that are typically involved are. We can understand each other because we have walked in the same shoes: multiple moves, family separations due to deployments and trainings, etc. Military families want a home that has stability, is comfortable and welcoming and is a space that they feel has their personality. For many, this is something they have daydreamed about for 10-20 years, that one day they would be in a home long enough to feel roots.”

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Photo by Robert Radifera Photography


“My daughter wants to be an artist, and my son has impressive attention to detail. It’s a little soon to tell if they will work in design, but they both have great taste.”


“I’ll help you bring a fresh, modern look into your home, all while conserving comfort and practicality—because I believe any well-designed space needs to balance form and function.”

See the rest of the 2022 Five Under Forty design award winners.

Categories: Stylemakers