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Inspired By: Kelly Hoppen

11 February, 2021

Inspired By: Kelly Hoppen

South African interior designer and author, Kelly Hoppen, is probably best known in the UK for her time on Dragon’s Den, but she was invited on to the show because her interior design skills are almost legendary. 

She’s lived in London for most of her life and began her career in design almost by accident when asked to design a friend’s kitchen at 16 – an opportunity Kelly grasped with both hands!

The Kelly Hoppen philosophy

Like many of the best interior designers, Kelly Hoppen keeps her mind uncluttered when designing by sticking to a simple philosophy that aims to help you create a living space that’s usable and relaxing. She tends to stick to a neutral palette with her colour choices and adds Eastern influences for a calming, ordered and harmonious result.

 Using simple, earthy colours like beige and other light browns instantly makes a room feel comfortable and warm – you won’t find bold clashing colours in Kelly’s spaces!

Using the Hoppen approach in your home

With a philosophy that’s built around comfort and calm, it’s hardly a surprise to see Kelly starting her living space projects with a great big sofa! If you have enough space, create a multiple sofa set-up surrounding a coffee table – preferably as low to the ground as possible and with plenty of soft furnishings.

How you approach your wall space is a crucial step in creating the atmosphere you’re looking for, and Kelly makes clever use of mirrors to add light, plus items such as canvas prints or works of art to build interest. Look at large canvas prints in earthy, brown shades - perhaps with an Eastern influence - or subtle abstract pieces.

Of course, using so many shades of brown could conjure up memories of the 70s, but you can avoid this by using contemporary furniture and by adding some Eastern influences. For example, using Asian art or textures adds a subtle touch of elegance and an ‘East meets West’ feel that you never found in a British 70s home! One or two high-quality items - a plush rug, perhaps - will subtly change the feel of any contemporary space, and allow you and your guests to concentrate on each other’s company rather than the room’s design crowding the social space. 

Taking on your own interior design project or redecoration can be quite a daunting task, but knowing that there are world-renowned designers like Kelly Hoppen who use such a simple and conservative approach helps release the pressure!

11 February, 2021


frame next to a house plant
framed photo by the bedside
framed landscape painting on the wall
framed picture next to a quill
holding a framed painting