CHARACTER STUDY
Homes & Gardens|February 2022
Under interior designer Kate Guinness’ guidance, a London apartment received a helping of colour, pattern and personality
JULIET BENNING

SITTING ROOM

The eclecticism of the furnishings is what brings a richness to this space. Rug, Sinclair Till. Bluebell sofa at Sofa.com is similar; covered in Fez Weave by Guy Goodfellow. Cushions, Kate Guinness Design shop

STUDY/READING ROOM

Pattern on pattern increases the feeling of plushness. Sevilla wall fabric, Claremont; installed by The Textile Wall Company

STUDY/READING ROOM

The large octagonal footstool doubles as a table. The striped fabric echoes the pattern made by the books. Bespoke footstool designed by Kate Guinness, Pendant light, Brownrigg

After seven years of living with minimal furnishings and white walls, Dominic, a barrister, realised that his Islington flat would benefit from some considered decorating. Prompted by the desire to fill his home with colour and character, a friend pointed him in the direction of the interior designer Kate Guinness who undertook the job along with Jess Denyer, contributing her expertise as lead designer. ‘When we first saw the flat, the space was very impersonal with few furnishings. We were asked to inject life and personality into it,’ says Jess. ‘Situated above a shop, it had an unassuming door, behind which was an unusual layout,’ Kate adds.

Kate and Jess’s first priority was to level the floors, raising them in the bedroom and bathroom and laying warm oak parquet floor. ‘The second bedroom had a sofa bed but was rarely used, so Dominic asked us to transform it into a cosy reading room,’ says Jess. But before tackling the bedrooms, the pair were eager to reconfigure the main living space. ‘The original kitchen layout was antisocial and not well-executed with a large breakfast bar that stuck out into the room and took up a lot of space,’ Jess explains. ‘The cooker was in a dark recess, so when Dominic went to cook he ended up disappearing,’ she elaborates.

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