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When Kate met Karndean

Karndean Designflooring

We're thrilled to reveal that visitors to Grand Designs Live Birmingham this October 11th-15th will have the opportunity to enter a fantastic competition to win a room makeover by one of our favourite interior stylists, Kate McPhee.

Having worked together on our Good Homes Roomsets at the Ideal Home Show, Kate is a big fan of our floor designs and at Grand Designs Live she will showcase a taster of what can be achieved with our new Art Select woods.

When Kate came to visit our showroom we sat down with her to chat about all things interiors, as well as finding out her thoughts on our new Storm Oak plank, parquet and basketweave designs...

Kate Mcphee Grand Designs Collab Reveal

Pictured above: Jay Forrester, showroom manager at Karndean Designflooring, and Kate McPhee

What made you go into interior design?

Simply my love of colour, pattern, and people.

What is the most important element you look for when stepping into a space?

The story it tells – from my neighbourhood coffee shop to a dear friend’s new house, the feeling a space evokes is the most interesting part.

For you, what’s the most vital aspect to consider when designing interiors?

The character and personality of the owner. The key to a good design is understanding how a space is used and getting under the skin of the people who live there. A key part of my role is helping the client tell their story.

What would you say most of your clients are looking for when they come to you?

I help clients to prioritise their needs and discover their design goals. Most people have a good understanding of their likes, dislikes, and the practical needs of the space. I help them translate this into a coherent and practical scheme.

Are there any particular trends you are incorporating into your latest projects?

This is an interesting question, because in actual fact I always encourage my clients to forget about trends and concentrate on what they love. After all, it is their home. 

Having said that, there are trends I enjoy that are here to stay, and they include:

- Dark dramatic interiors are perfect for making a space seem larger and they make the best backdrop for displaying accessories and artwork.

- Greenery - anything from botanical motifs and hanging plants, to painting your walls mint or bottle green. Taking inspiration from the outdoors and the resulting calming effect on the home is timeless.

What’s the first question you ask a client before undertaking a design project?

I have a collection of questions I use to understand the client’s brief, but I suppose the most important question comes at the end of the consultation, which is: ‘Can you work with me?’

Kate Mcphee Grand Designs Collab Reveal

What has been your favourite design project to date?

That’s a tricky question as I’m lucky to have worked on many varied projects, so it’s difficult to choose one. I really enjoyed designing six roomsets for Good Homes Magazine in spring earlier this year, when I used Karndean’s Opus Luna and Nero for a monochrome bathroom and Kaleidoscope Apex (pictured above), featuring Da Vinci Limed Linen Oak, Limed Cotton Oak and Limed Jute Oak, in the living room.

How does flooring affect the way a room or space is defined?

Similarly to wall coverings, your floor choice acts as a backdrop for your interior decoration scheme. The right flooring will have a practical impact on how well each room performs too.

In open plan spaces, having two different flooring types works well to visually define each space. Alternate flooring adds definition and breaks up large open spaces into distinct zones. It can also be a fun way of incorporating a pattern into your flooring – for example, you could have a rug effect under your dining table.

Kate Mcphee Grand Designs Collab Reveal

Pictured above - Kaleidoscope Pyramid

How would you describe Karndean Designflooring to friends or colleagues in your field?

Karndean is a realistic, natural effect flooring with authentic texture, combined with the possibility for cutting edge laying patterns and a vast range of traditional and modern colour options.

What do you think of the new Art Select wood designs?

I adore a parquet floor, and the grey tones of Storm Oak are perfect for the homeowners’ love for this versatile neutral. Warm yet light, the colour will suit so many rooms within the home. The added bonus of different formats for seamless room to room design is a huge asset.

Kate Mcphee Grand Designs Collab Reveal

Pictured above - Art Select, Storm Oak Parquet

Watch this space for full terms and conditions for the competition and let us know if we'll see you at Grand Designs Birmingham using #GDLive on Twitter, Instagram, or Facebook.

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