Updated: Apr 17, 2020
Kelly Wearstler’s eponymous global luxury lifestyle brand is renowned for its distinctive designs and signature soulful vibe pioneered by the celebrated interior designer. With a style that juxtaposes raw with refined, melds color, sophistication and spirited spontaneity, Wearstler has revolutionized the look, feel and meaning of modern American design. A celebrated diva of hospitality, she also boasts a residential A-list including Cameron Diaz, Gwen Stefani, and Ben Stiller. Her robust portfolio includes collaborations and partnerships with some of the most respected global brands across the luxury market space, She has since grown to become a household name. Kelly is one of the esteemed judges on BRAVO’s interior design competition show, “Top Design” alongside Jonathan Adler, India Hicks and Margaret Russell. A dual collaboration with landmark department store Bergdorf Goodman in 2006 saw Wearstler lending her exacting eye to both the popular seventh-floor restaurant and her own eponymous boutique. She has designed stones and tiles for @leejofa; floor coverings for @TheRugCompany. Her eponymous collection, sold in her West Hollywood shop and online, encompasses furniture, fabrics, lighting in collaboration with @visualcomfortco, accessories and furniture line by E.J.Victor.
Kelly has also somehow managed to find the time to pen four books: Most recently EVOCATIVE STYLE, Rhapsody, HUE, Modern Glamour:The Art of Unexpected Style and Domicilium Decoratus.
She headed west for Los Angeles, establishing her studio in 1995. With her first project, the Avalon Hotel in Beverly Hills where we first met, she hit the ground running. Viceroys worldwide followed. Since Kelly Wearstler Studio has grown from a boutique interior design firm to a global lifestyle brand. Driven by the signature aesthetic and idiosyncratic spirit of its creator and namesake, the Los Angeles-based company boasts a diverse range of modalities, taking an all-encompassing approach to design that includes everything from residential and commercial interiors to lighting, fabrics, furniture and home accessories and highly-anticipated limited-run gallery editions. Wearstler, her husband Brad Korzen, and sons Oliver, and Elliott, live in a 1926 Beverly Hills estate renovated in 2009 by Brian Tichenor. Weekends are at a Malibu beach house, steps from the Pacific Ocean.
Over the past two decades, Wearstler’s protracted reach as a designer has expanded exponentially, designing multiple international hotel properties – including luxury hotels for the Viceroy brand and the new Proper Hotel Group – as well as grand residences from Beverly Hills to the Caribbean and around the globe.
On April 2018 Wearstler’s interview for the famous "Interior Design" magazine, By Edie Cohen; Kelly's response to these questions: ID: One studio does it all. Is there a distinct team for each type of project? KW: My staff of about 50 includes interior designers, architects, graphic designers, product designers, artists, and our sales and marketing teams. There’s an inherent cross-pollination. Architecture and interiors influence our art pieces, home décor, furniture, and vice versa. ID: You’re known for your hotels. What are some of the most important aspects of hospitality design? KW: Travelers are living in the moment, outside of their normal, daily routine. Senses are heightened, and expectations are open. There’s a thrill of designing environments for people to expand their experiences. ID: How do you go about creating a hotel brand? KW: It starts with service. What will differentiate the hotel? What do you want guests to feel? What will make for an authentic experience? The climate, history, and iconography of each city are considered from the beginning. Sunset chair, Kelly Wearstler Spring Collection 2018. Photography courtesy of Kelly Wearstler. ID: What are a few recent projects? KW: I’ve just completed San Francisco Proper, part of a new brand of hotel and residential properties, Proper Hospitality. I’m currently working on the next three Proper projects opening in downtown Los Angeles, Austin, and Santa Monica. ID: You’re doing extensive work at the Westfield Century City mall in Los Angeles. Tell us about the renovation. KW: This $1 billion renovation and development is my first commercial real estate project, and it’s a remarkable scale. One of our first mandates was to find a way to make people do more than shop and leave the mall. We needed to give them places they wanted to be in, to linger and lounge in because they felt good in them. ID: Dream commission? KW: A yacht or airplane would be super cool.