Up Close and Personal with Kim Williams
Kim Williams is an award-winning interior designer, behaviour strategist and owner of Kim Williams Design, a top interior creative studio based in Cape Town.
Kim’s mission of transforming homes, property developments and commercial units into beautiful and functional spaces has garnered her global recognition, including by the International Design Awards (IDA) and the Loeries. The well-respected entrepreneur, author, and inspiring public speaker is known for her unique approach to interiors which combines creative, behavioural and design strategies.
We chatted to Kim Williams about her latest home décor collection, her inspirations, and the future of interior design.
Tell us more about your Noluthando interior décor range?
The Noluthando interior décor range beautifully blends interior design and fashion to create a stunning new expression. The fabric we have used is a traditional weave which fits perfectly with the Noluthando print to create a classic story with a South African twist. The range encompasses scatter cushions and wallpaper, as well as a full napery range that offers something completely different to the market. It is proudly South African and embraces blended design principles that speaks to us all.
What inspired you to create this collection?
I first saw Jessica Molebatsi’s culturally inspired fabric – Noluthando – when her intricately designed garments were showcased at Paris Fashion Week. I was especially inspired by Jessica’s application of symbolism in her Noluthando print design, and how it transformed into a stunning work of art. I connected with Jessica in June 2022 and worked with her to craft the idea of applying the Noluthando designer fabric print into interior spaces to elevate expression and style.
Your designs have been described as classical and timeless. Do you agree?
I try to create sustainability when designing to ensure longevity in the investment and experience of the space. I have always loved combining old classic designs with a modern twist. I think there is something quite special about bringing life to an old décor piece by taking the simplicity of a classical design, and then giving it an edgy spin with contemporary elements.
Tell us more about the style and material used in the Noluthando interior décor range?
The Noluthando range is inspired by a traditional French country style. We have adapted the beautiful French Toile de Jouy for South Africa with an African story. This story is for all South Africans and brings a feeling of home to spaces.
Jessica Molebatsti, the creator of the print, has wonderfully captured the essence of the story which we have then adapted for interiors. The collection combines linens, neutrals, and cottons, in traditionally nostalgic colours as well as traditional hues.
Your work is all about creating new ways of living. Can you elaborate on this?
I love how a space can change the way we feel and experience life. This behavioural approach inspires me when designing interiors – whether it’s a residential or commercial project. The goal for me is always to improve how people live, work and play in their spaces, enabling them to be their best possible selves.
How long does it take to develop a Kim William interior design project?
It depends on the size of the project, the number of spaces and whether it is an existing building or a new build. Commercial projects are much quicker because they are focused on brand and customer experience, this will usually entail moving some dry walls around.
New build homes usually take between one to two years, depending on the size – whilst renovations to an existing home can take anything from three months to a year. To save time, and costs, I always advise getting your interior designer involved at the planning phase, so they work alongside the architect.
What in general does the future hold for interior home décor? What do you think our interiors will look like, and what will be the biggest change in the way we live?
Since the pandemic, our spaces have become more important to us, and we are spending even more of our time in our homes – there is a definite rise in home entertainment again. There is also a growing focus on the planet and sustainability which affects the design space.
There are several movements set to transform home interiors in the next few
months and years:
- the resurgence of classical design spurred by deeper investigation into our history and the past,
- eclectic design with a strong focus on using what was and is,
- organic design focusing on natural materials, sustainability, and the reduction of waste.
Each of these movements will continue to blossom, combining with the integration of technology to create sustainable yet striking spaces.
People have a stronger need to express themselves and will always desire a safe haven away from the outside chaos with functionality at their fingertips, but value creation will always remain important to homeowners and developers who want to see bang for their buck.
For more tips from Kim Williams, sign-up for her blog or follow her on Facebook and Instagram @kim_williams_design.
- Designers, Décorators & Architects