Designer Spotlight: Balancing Practicality and Personality with Kirsten Blazek

Designer Spotlight: Balancing Practicality and Personality with Kirsten Blazek

7. Mai 2024

Walls & Ceiling: Faded Terracotta No.CC8 | Photography: Alex Zarour

A well-designed home balances beautifully between form and function — designed to be practical and comfortable, while also being a deeply personal expression of the people who live there. It’s a balance that Kirsten Blazek, founder of A1000xBetter design studio and author of her first book A1000xBetter: A Rebel by Design, always gets right. So, we sat down to ask the newly published author all about her work, her approach to design and, of course, her love for Farrow & Ball.

How did you get into interior design?

My path into interior design was anything but conventional! I studied nursing at the University of Edinburgh and worked as a nurse in Scotland and the United States. After being at home with my children for five years, I wanted to go back to work but I didn’t want to go back to nursing. A friend discovered I had an eye for design and referred me to her friend who’d just bought a new home. That was my first decorating project and I fell in love with the world of design. I started to build my portfolio by staging homes that were about to go on the market. My approach was to treat each home like a space I’d want to live in myself. Over time, I developed my reputation as a stager and clients who saw my staging work and liked my eclectic style hired me for design work too.

Mouse's Back No.40 | Photography: Michael P.H. Clifford

Mouse's Back No.40 | Photography: Michael P.H. Clifford

Can you share a bit about A1000xBetter approach and design style?

We take a very holistic approach to design. I believe that a house has an essence and soul, which deserves to be listened to. When we’re considering our scope of work for each job, I consider both the client's needs and what the home is “telling” me. We always strive to design spaces that are both functional and aesthetically pleasing. So, when I’m designing, I try to take a nuanced approach, layering texture and accents, that leaves spaces interesting but not overwhelming.

Tell us about your love for Farrow & Ball – why choose us?

I love using Farrow & Ball paint because each colour is grounded and nuanced with an earth-based anchor. Even the cooler tones have elements of warmth, which stops them from feeling cold. When I recommend Farrow & Ball to our clients, I know we’re giving them a high-quality product that will stand the test of time. Finding the right shade can make or break a space, and with the range of gorgeous colours, sheens and finishes, I’m always confident I’ll find what’s right for the space I’m designing.

Cabinets and Door: Mouse's Back No.40 | Wall: Aranami 4601 | Photography: Michael P.H. Clifford

What is your favourite Farrow & Ball paint colour and wallpaper pattern?

It is so hard to choose just one colour, but we recently used Mouse’s Back in our new studio and I love it. It has just the right amount of brown with a hint of green, so its impactful and neutral at the same time. 

My favourite wallpaper is another difficult question — we’ve used so many different ones and all of them have looked fantastic. We recently used Aranami at the office and I love how it creates an additional layer to our space but is neutral enough to complement the other colours and textures. 

Cabinets: Mouse's Back No.40 | Wall: Aranami 4601 | Photography: Michael P.H. Clifford

Door: Mouse's Back No.40 | Wall: Aranami 4601 | Photography: Michael P.H. Clifford

You have a particular affinity for American Southwest style — how does colour play a role here?

My affinity lies in earth-based tones, and the colours found in nature throughout the American Southwest. The colours have a lot of similarity with the colours I grew up with in Scotland. Although Scotland has a lot more vibrant green due to the rain, when the leaves fall and the vibrancy of the summer grass fades, the palettes become very similar. 

Cola No.9918 | Photography: Alex Zarour 

Cola No.9918 | Photography: Alex Zarour

If you could design anyone's home, whose would it be and why?

I would love to design for Orville Peck! Not only do I love his music but his personal style feels very aligned with mine. I feel like we would connect both through aesthetics and in the way we view the world, which is based in being authentically yourself!

What can we expect to see from A 1000x Times Better next?

I’m very excited to be getting into the finishing stages of a variety of very different projects. We have a project in Chicago converting a historic building into a unique family home, which has been very fun to work on.

Looking For Expert Advice?

Whether you want to create a specific style, find the best colour to reflect your personality or you’re simply overwhelmed by choice, our Colour Consultants are on hand to make things simple. In-home or over video call, they offer expert advice on colour, pattern and finish to bring your dream décor to life.