Born in South Africa and growing up in London, Kelly Hoppen had no formal training when she set herself up as an interior designer in her teens. As well as designing interiors for the great and the good, including Elton John and David and Victoria Beckham, she is author of several books and has been married twice: the first time to restaurateur Graham Corrett, father of her daughter Natasha; the second to Ed Miller which gave her stepdaughters, fashion designer Savannah and actress Sienna. She lives with businessman John Gardiner in an outsize converted auction house – now a temple of Hoppen style, which she describes as her ‘dream house.’ Her new book House of Hoppen is out in October.



So 40 years in business. How does that feel?

It’s amazing, and quite hard to get my head around! I have absolutely loved it and feel lucky to have so much passion for what I do. Here’s to another 40!



What are the most significant changes you have seen in that period?

When I started we didn’t have the internet so for products we looked at books and went to places to see furniture. There is so much out there now and the industry has definitely become more innovative with amazing technology in the home. Underfloor heating, for example, saves space and doesn’t interfere with design.



kelly hoppen

Above Images from the 'Pied a Terre' project,



Has your approach changed in that time?

Many of my principles have always been the same and I will always keep to these. Interiors should be timeless and not follow trends as these come and go. 20 years ago I developed the East Meets West style - mixing characteristics from Eastern culture with Western living and still to this day clients come to me because they want this style, my style of interior design.



Is taupe still super chic?

I’m very proud of my ‘Queen of Taupe’ signature! Taupe is my favourite neutral. It instantly adds a sense of harmony to a space and you can build on this as a foundation of design. Neutrals are anything but boring to me. I love enhancing the tones by playing with textures in a way that brings a sense of sophistication to any interiors space.



kelly hoppen

Above Images from the 'Pied a Terre' project,



Have your feelings about colour changed over the years?

Yes, I have actually started incorporating more colours into my collections for my online store. I think injecting little hints around the home is a great way to add personality. At the moment I am obsessed with dusty pinks and gold. I also love bursts of yellow and orange through vases and accessories.



Do you change or tweak anything in your home with the advent of a new season?

I incorporate heavier and warmer fabrics like wool, cashmere, plaids and mohair to replace the lighter fabrics like cotton and linen. Neutrals work all year round, but when paired with rich shades, they take on an even more luxurious and cosy feel.



What is your favourite piece of furniture?

I am still completely in love with The Kelly Chair. It is low, wide and endlessly luxurious. It just fits anywhere.



kelly hoppen

Above left Origami pot, £15, Kelly Hoppen; Above right Images from the 'Pied a Terre' project,



Tell us a bit about the ‘dream house’.

The bathroom sounds amazing... Yes, it is the only room in the house where I can lock the door and escape; I wanted to make it feel as relaxing and peaceful as possible. This meant the right lighting, flooring and most importantly the tub. I love textural combinations, and after deciding the flooring, I decided I wanted to contrast that with a luxurious marble bath. It’s a stand-out piece, it is really like a sculpture which takes centre stage.



Is there anything left to achieve?

Yes, I have something to announce very soon. In the meantime I had a lot of fun being in the Absolutely Fabulous movie.



Lead image Images from the 'Pied a Terre' project,


Article by: Susan Springate