Interview: Tracy Kendall

by on October 18, 2010
wallpaper
'Stripe' wallpaper, price on request, Tracy Kendall

Tangible yet beautiful wallpapers: Tracy Kendall designs something a little bit different for your walls.

London based wallpaper designer, Tracy Kendall offers a beautiful collection of contemporary wallpapers and just recently exhibited at Decorex and won an award for her stunning Sequin design.

We caught up with Tracy to find out what inspires her to keep creating and designing...

If you had 3 words to describe your collection what would they be?

Simple, original, touchable.

You recently exhibited at Decorex and won an award for your stunning ‘Sequin’ wallpaper. What does this mean to you and what do you hope that your wallpapers bring to home interiors?

It means a great deal to me to have such a prestigious award given to me. I work in such a bubble sometimes, I don't design for anyone other than myself and all the collection are my designs so to have such a great recognition of what I do is really special to me. I hope that it can inspire people to take risk but with products that they fall in love with, to have in their home items which have won their heads, rather than their heads all the time, i.e., not the safe option.

Since starting the production of your hand-produced graphic range in 1996, how have you developed and experimented with different designs and scales?

I've moved into more textural work, adding different textures as I find different manufacturing partners along the way. Sometimes the designs can only be made in house, such as the sequins, but with others I have been able to use external specialized manufacturers for which is great.

What inspires you to keep designing and creating?

Curiosity; I love to challenge myself both visually and technically with my work.

wallpaper
'Spot Sequin' wallpaper, made to order and price on request, Tracy Kendall

You have taken 3-D wallcoverings in a new and exciting direction. So, what are your favourite materials to work with and why do they work so well?

Paper is still my favourite material; having studied fine art printmaking I am always struck by how much paper can do or be made to do.

Your wallpapers could be described as tangible, and I particularly like love the sequins and also the stitched text. Why do you think that wallpaper should be something that will create an impact and evoke a reaction when people see it?

I don't think that is limited to wallpaper, chair or cup can give the same reaction but my chosen medium is wallpaper and by hopefully creating a wallpaper that gives people more than one option of sense in which to view the paper helps to make them fall in love with it.

What is your best selling design from your collection and why?

It’s probably still the fork design, the first but it is so simple, so easy to use in the home or commercial spaces, it is big but not over powering, it makes a statement but doesn't yell for attention all the time, it just works very well, thank goodness.

wallpaper
'Eat' wallpaper, price on request, Tracy Kendall

How do you feel that patterned wallpaper will develop, and what direction do you hope it will go in the future in order to keep interior design fresh and exciting?

There are so many new and exciting wallpapers coming out, I hope that they continue to have a aspect of respect for the environments they are going into and don't try to over whelm them, its wallpaper, it is meant to have mirrors and pictures on top of it and chair in front of and your back to it as well!!

How important do you think it is for interior design to become more eco-friendly?

Very, not always in such obvious "what materials" do we use way, it's more about how much we change interiors rather than grow them and how much material we waste as a part of the manufacturing process. as I make to order, I have very little waste, all my waste then goes into sampling for sending out which works very well for me.

What is the most recent design product that you have bought for your home?

Nothing new, brought some amazing brass table legs to make a table up with and then had a friend make the table top for me, a lovely mix of old and new.

What advice would you give to aspiring interior designers?

Have passion, lots of passion.

Is there anyone that you would like to collaborate with in the future and if so why?

I never plan who I am going to work for or with, I love not knowing what or which client will ask me to make whatever for them next, the element of surprise helps to keep everything fresher and better for the client as well.

What are you working on now or do you have anything in the pipeline?

I’ve just finished a new design to be launched at Maison and Object in Jan 2011 and I’m also working on another to launch there as well and doing lots of projects for mainly domestic clients at the moment but have a restaurant in London that I am also working closely with and a shop opening in Vancouver which will stock my work which is exciting as well.

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About Emma Foale

Emma Foale Emma is a Features Writer and intern at furnish.co.uk. She enjoys writing and getting inspiration from quirky, modern designs, and all things that create visual impact.