Albury-based designer Kat Rattray makes gorgeous children’s bed linen, based on books she painstakingly illustrates. Here, the ex-interior designer talks us through how she finds inspiration. And why her ‘imperfect space’ works just fine for her...
“I wrote a blog post recently called, ‘Imperfect interiors make for perfect homes,’ which is something I really believe in.
It’s funny, because there I was, as an interior designer, designing fabulous interiors for people, with high budgets, in these very specific styles - but my own style was much more eclectic.
There’s this really cool Japanese concept - wabi sabi - which is about things being frayed, and worn, and used, which I love, because I love it when something looks like it has a history, or a story. And that’s very much what my home looks like.
I read a book, called Dream House, when I was about 24. It’s a story based on Alice in Wonderland, and it’s stayed with me, even as an interior designer - that you can walk through the front door of someone’s creative space, or home, and get the story of that person without words. I love that concept.
As part of setting up my business, Kat & Fox, I have had to lean back in certain areas, so I ended up having to say goodbye to my studio. I decided it wasn’t worth it to pay rent on a space - and I decided to embrace my dining room table instead!
I like it. I don’t have a problem working from there. When there are no children in my house, and everything is in order, I find it very peaceful.
I actually love to work from my house - it’s the coolest place. And I have views of the countryside to look at. But the thing is, it’s still not been renovated, so the walls are heavily dark brick. But it has a great shell - with massive windows.
We only moved into it two or three years ago, but I ended up starting the business, so we just did a tiny bit around the pool, and then we stopped, because everything went into the business. It needs love, but it feels creative - I like it’s rough edge. And it is rough - sometimes I find myself sharing my shower with slugs!
But back to that concept of Wabi Sabi. I love that idea of objects telling stories, and everything having a meaning. You can do wonderful things in new spaces that still tell stories - even if you have a relatively new house, you can still add that sense of age, or sense of story.
And I like to think that that is what my home is like - imperfect, but perfect for me.”
All images courtesy of Katt Rattray