The Graaff-reinet home of decorator Stephen Falcke flips the script on conventional Karoo interiors
One of the design world’s brightest luminaries – and a constant in the pages of Condé Nast House & Garden since its inception – stephen Falcke shares an extract from the long-awaited book of his work, A World of Design, and gives us a candid account of what it took to decorate his home in graaff-reinet.
‘In the traditional Karoo homestead they used to use a mixture of lime and pig’s blood on the outside walls to give them their yellow-ochre colour.
This might be a classic cape georgian house but I decided that I wasn’t going to make it look old, so I took the colour theme from the outside and brought it indoors. Thankfully we don’t use pig’s blood anymore, it’s an oxide in the lime that gives it the same colour effect. They actually use the same paint on all the monuments in the town. We have to patch it up a few times a year as the oxide easily weathers. usually these historic houses were always white inside, but I felt that the ochre glowed, it was happy, it was sunshine.’