Once feared and reviled, wallpaper has come back into its own in the last ten or so years. I for one am pleased to see it back, as nothing adds instant impact in the way that wallpaper can. The best wallpapers tell a story, set a mood and even function as art.
Kingdom Home was established by Kenneth King in 2014. It’s a boutique studio that makes wallpaper and fabrics to order, using both hand screen and digital printing . If you are looking for muted minimalism you won’t find it here. Kenneth’s designs are a gorgeous riot of colour, underpinned by some very clever illustrations. His is a talent I have seen at first hand, when we both studied interior design at the University of Technology Sydney. Right from the start, Kenneth’s illustrations were incredible, little stories within drawings that were always intriguing. His work shows a strong visual sense underpinned by a variety of influences. I asked Kenneth about those influences, and how he goes about creating a new design.
What particular periods or visual styles influence your designs?
Being of Asian heritage and having grown up in the west; art and design with cultural significance inspires me. I also love illustrations in any form and manga artwork.
Do your influences tend to change, or have some remained the same?
Always changing – it is important to understand trend and interpret it into your own designs.
How do you approach a new design? How long does it take from initial drawings to getting a design into production?
I break down the design, meaning I would look at it as if each colour or element is on its own screen. I will then draw up each “screen” and edit it in photoshop to create the element and experiment combinations of each element to create the overall pattern and repeat. Colouring will come last after the design is completed. It generally takes me a month to bring a design from concept to life.
How do you know when a design is working? How do you know when it is right?
Honestly, I don’t! I just do what I love and if I love it I hope others will too!
We love these bold and beautiful designs. In case you are thinking of taking the plunge, here are my top three tips for using wallpaper.
Treat it like an artwork
You wouldn’t buy an artwork that you weren’t sure about, so use that same discernment with wallpaper. Choose something that you love, and that lifts your mood whenever you see it. Follow your instincts, not anyone else’s.
Don’t try to compete with the star
A bold wallpaper is going to be the star of the room, so get out of its way and let it shine. Your furnishings should complement the wallpaper, without trying to compete with it.
Hang it properly
The key to success is to install it properly in the first place. Installing wallpaper is an art and a skill and not for the amateur. Don’t try and do this yourself, get a professional. Your wallpaper supplier should be able to provide recommendations of good installers in your local area.