History, science, iron and Design


My vibe, style and aesthetic cannot be separated from who I am and where I came from:  I am the daughter of an artist and of a West Point educated Army officer.  I consider myself from both everywhere and nowhere in particular, although I do claim Virginia now as home.  I have enjoyed living many places including New Mexico, New York, Northern Virginia, Italy and Germany and I have visited many many countries and speak many many languages very very poorly.  I love meeting people and making connections, which is one of the reasons I dig my job so much.

I am attracted to things that are strict, linear, edgy, remarkable, contrasting, and personal; and I really love color.  I have a hard time being indoors at sunset when the light is so fantastic and slanty and golden.  I am not beige.  If I were a crayon I would be Golden Fire Sunset w/ some bluish-black paint splashed in.  I self describe as Sandra Dee with a tattooed and graffitied alter ego (I own graffiti but no tattoos).  And I think my designs reflect that tension.  


People often ask if I studied interior design in school, but I did not.  I began my business, Rebecca Simpson Design, in 2007 at the urging and encouragement of friends and family.  But I have a Masters degree in History from James Madison University.   I think of myself as more of a scientist (sometimes absent minded) than an historian, and I apply this same skill set to everything I do.  The design process is both instinctive, intuitive and yet very thoughtful and analytical for me:  I observe, analyze, make inferences and experiment while also listening to my gut.  


In addition to my design work, I am a mom to three amazing kids:  Georgia, Judson and Shuford.  My daughter, Georgia (12), is my editor and KUNST advisor on all things youthful, hip and modern.  I try not to bore the boys with my work, although I know they appreciate good design and beauty...even though they might also just as easily enjoy destroying it with a good wrestling match.    We have never been described as a quiet or laid back family.  

I am an IRONMAN.  Not an Iron Woman; although I am that too (and so are ALL of you hardworking women out there)!   But I have completed 2 Ironman triathlons and I really love the Half Iron and Iron distance races.  Although I obviously swim (when forced), bike (I do love a bike) and run, I am really just a grunt…a soldier who is good at hard work and long suffering.  Here is the connection between Ironman and design:  I believe good design takes courage and boldness.  I always say that my job is not for the fearful.