Kimberly Lewis is not a woman with plain white walls. The Brooklyn-based wallpaper designer is known for bold colors and playful patterns. In fact, four of her wallpaper designs are in the Brooklyn Museum’s permanent collection, proving that neutral minimalism is not for everyone. We caught up with Kimberly to find out what inspires her eclectic designs and how even white wall hangers can experiment with wallpaper.
What inspired you to start your company?
I studied industrial design at the Pratt Institute here in Brooklyn, New York. I feel that the program really expressed my entrepreneurship. I loved not only creating and designing products in my studios, but also branding, creating imaginary customers, prototyping, testing and getting feedback and then going back to the drawing board. I thought I was just learning how to design products back then, but when I look back on my experience I think that is an amazing foundation on which to run a business. I started selling pillows that I made and designed my senior year and it eventually grew into my business today, inspired by my love for pattern and decorative arts.
Your designs are so whimsical. What inspires you
Each of my patterns has its own story. My Flamingo Dance wallpaper was designed to reflect the style of a fancy Miami hotel. My Beverley wallpaper was inspired by a dress I found at a New England flea market. My Set Sail wallpaper is inspired by scenes from Cape Cod.
Do you have a favorite wallpaper design?
It’s so hard to choose! I love so many different patterns for so many different reasons. From my own collection, I love brownstone, which is inspired by my love for architecture. I love Nathalie Lete’s work, especially her Great Meadow design.
What’s the best thing about your job?
I love helping people create beautiful homes that they love – that’s my greatest joy!
What’s the hardest part of your job?
Wearing all of the hats in my shop has been a challenge to say the least! I always learn.
Do you have any advice for people who are nervous about getting involved in wallpaper?
You can always start small; Think outside the box when you are scared of doing anything. You can paper the insides of bookcases, cabinets, and ceilings, and add a pop to the inside of kitchen cabinets. Wallpaper doesn’t have to be limited to the walls.
Flamingo dance wallpaper
Set of sail wallpaper