There is nothing bland about Kit Kemp. While many rooms and design schemes of our time are neutral to the point of blandness, the interiors of Kemp’s London home are welcoming and exuberant, filled with vivid color and texture and pattern, and yet nothing seems chaotic or overworked. As she emphasizes, “I like bold interiors, but not ones that are frantic. After all, you have to be able to live with it.”
Kemp is creative director and—with husband, Tim—co-founder of Firmdale Hotels, with ten stylish properties in London and New York. The rooms in their home have been shaped by the same sure hand and eye responsible for the distinctive look of her many private design commissions and numerous unique hotel rooms—including the oversized headboards recognized as one of the Kit Kemp Design Studio’s most iconic design elements.
Kemp’s personal living spaces manage to be eclectic and colorful but not garish; there’s a sense of warmth and whimsy about these rooms, as if you couldn’t help but feel happy when you enter them. “I do believe color makes you happy and can spice up your life,” says Kemp, “and I think too many interiors are so tasteful that they’re almost forgettable.” Kemp feels that every space should have its own character, from a corridor or vestibule to even the inside of a cupboard. “If you can give those areas some character of their own,” she says, “you’ve essentially doubled the spaces in your house, with each area telling its own story. Because when everything is the same color, you’ll have gone out the other side before you even recognize it!”
This story appeared in the Spring 2022 issue of MILIEU. To read the complete story or to see all photos, visit the MILIEU Newsstand to purchase this issue in print or visit Zinio.com to purchase this issue in digital format.
INTERIOR DESIGN BY KIT KEMP
PHOTOGRAPHY BY SIMON BROWN
WRITTEN BY EDWARD MCCANN