Q&A with DESIGNER KENDALL WILKINSON
Kendall Wilkinson focuses her classically trained eye (and her mom experience) on combining new, vintage, and unexpected elements to build interiors that are fashion-forward but timeless.
Q: What is your approach when designing for a family?
A: It is strategic and collaborative. I gather a lot of information from my clients about their design aesthetic and lifestyles before I create a design plan. Having two boys of my own is really helpful—I look back at what worked for us at different stages of their lives. I think about how kids use furniture, where they like to eat, etc.
Q: What are your go-to elements for creating timeless interiors that suit all ages?
A: I use indoor-outdoor fabrics because they look good, are durable, and have a nice hand. I opt for satin paint finishes because they’re easy to clean. I love to design game rooms that revolve around a family’s hobbies and that bring families together no matter their ages. Lately, we’ve been hooking up oldtime video gaming systems that parents remember and kids love. Q: How do you turn up drama and glamour in family-friendly interiors?
A: That’s where bold colors and patterns come in. Wallpapers and special one-of-a-kind pieces add interest to modern spaces. Lucite furniture, mirrors, and chandeliers bring in shine. I layer things like wool, leather, fur, and sparkle to create a textural mix. Art is important, too; it’s what makes a house feel like a home.
Q: What is your best advice for decorating a home where kids abide?
A: Don’t start with too much furniture. Kids need to have room to move about. Watch how they use the space and how you live in the home. You’ll find that you live differently than you thought you would. I work with clients year after year to layer in new things that work with their families’ changing lifestyles.
Q: Describe your design philosophy.
A: I want people to come into a room and first see it as a fluid whole, and then look at the fabulous pieces that make it beautiful.