Text Robyn Alexander Production Sven Alberding Photography Elsa Young
Interior designer Kim Stephen’s terraced home in Barnes, London, combines her signature flair for colour with a clever use of its relatively compact spaces.
As it is situated in a row of brick terraced homes that were originally built as workers’ housing, the facade of this house is almost identical to those on either side of it. Step inside the front door, however, and the uniquely colourful style that interior designer Kim Stephen has brought to her own abode rapidly becomes evident.
‘I am naturally drawn to colour… and I’ve certainly got a very wide range of colours in this house,’ says Kim. She’s not exaggerating – from the bright blue and green ikat wallpaper in the guest cloakroom to the bright pinks and yellows in the open-plan dining, kitchen and living space, a plethora of vibrant shades meets the eye all over the house.
Asked where her affinity for colour comes from, Kim simply says, ‘Colour makes me feel happy and brings interiors to life. My use of it feels intuitive – I’m just drawn to it when given a choice.’ As her mother owns an interiors textiles showroom, she grew up being exposed to a huge array of interior fabrics, ‘and I think I just found the colourful ones more exciting and interesting,’ says Kim.
As anyone who has tried to put together a decor scheme using a range of bright shades knows, it’s not easy to get this sort of look right. Kim says that to make colour work in interiors, ‘it’s always important to temper with neutrals and texture’, and adds that here she made sure both of these elements were effectively used.