UK-based designer, Katharine Paravicini recently transformed her charming 18th-century cottage in Wiltshire, employing her cheerful, layered style to evoke an instant sense of ease. Below, she shares the process of designing her family’s space, her favorite holiday tradition, and her approach to creating the feeling of home.
5 Questions with Katharine Paravicini:
Samuel & Sons: What would you say is your biggest inspiration or influence in design?
Katharine Paravicini: My biggest inspiration comes from beautiful objects and things! Be it an antique, a vintage textile, a fabric, or a piece of art; often one thing might inspire and be the starting point for how I design a whole room. I love combining all sorts of things in a room so that they all somehow make sense together and complement each other, even if they are all from different eras and cultures.
S&S: What is your approach to using trim in your work?
KP: I use trims on all my projects and in so many ways! Trim adds that finer detail to a room and I love to use it layered with fabrics and other textures. I very often use trim to add definition and interest to the design of a window treatment. I use trims a lot with upholstery too, and in a room with lots of upholstered furniture, such as in my own sitting room, I like to mix it all up at the base of the upholstery, with skirts, fringes, and interesting legs showing. I also use fringes and trims a lot on cushions, bed treatments, and even on walls!
S&S: How does designing for your own home differ from designing for a client?
KP: My basic principles remain the same, but with clients, I like to work with them so that I can come to an understanding of what they really love and also how they will use the rooms to relax and entertain so that I can create a space that feels like home for them. I suppose for my own home, this wasn’t a process I needed to go through.
S&S: Do you have a favorite holiday tradition at home?
KP: Putting up the Christmas tree is always one of our favourite ways to start feeling Christmassy. We decorate the tree as a family eating mince pies and listening to Christmas carols. We use decorations we’ve collected over the years - we never have a theme to our tree and it is the same every year. There is a mix of decorations made by the children, decorations handed down, given to us, or pretty ones found on our travels. We have pom pom garlands and lots of fairy lights.
S&S: What does the feeling of ‘home’ mean to you and how does that factor into your work?
KP: A home should always be comfortable and importantly should reflect the personality of the people who live there. This is something I strive to achieve with every project I work on.