Alumni Thinks Outside the Box and Creates Unique Career Choice
It was a family trip that first inspired Kristina Spaulding ’90. Spaulding, who grew up in New York’s Westchester County, traveled coast to coast with her parents and two older sisters when she was seven. They visited many historic and magnificent sites, but what she remembers more than anything else are the camper trailers she saw along the way. Spaulding was enamored of the fact that you can take your home with you no matter where you go.
“At UHart, Professor Griswold encouraged us to think outside the box when it comes to professional goals,” Spaulding says, referring to recently retired Hillyer College Professor Wick Griswold. She took his advice to heart.
But before thinking outside the box led her to a life inside a trailer, Spaulding took a gap year after UHart, then enrolled at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts. It was only after she left the city that she jumped into trailers full time; she bought her first one in 2000.
Spaulding founded a company called Silver Trailer, which today customizes and rents out Airstream trailers. In addition, she works with event and production companies that are in the market for customized trailers for special needs. She also offers Airbnb rentals, and even has a line of customized jewelry that reinforces the trailer motif.
“Now that Airsteam has gained so much in popularity nationwide, my family really appreciates what I’m doing," Spaulding says. “In fact, they even want to get Airstreams of their own,” she adds from her base of operations just outside of Las Vegas. That’s one of two place she calls home, the other being in Northern California, from where her husband holds down the fort.
Silver Trailer is a lone-person operation, though Spaulding has help from time to time from freelance friends. Still, she seems to do the work of several people at once. In addition to doing the retro-chic customization herself and handling the rental business, Spaulding also writes articles about travel and speaks at various events about the benefits of living small. “I also have a podcast called Home Small Home, “ she explains, “based on interviews with friends who are following their own ‘small living’ dreams.”
Living, working, and thinking outside the box opened up a gigantic world of opportunity for Kristina Spaulding.