We first took notice (belatedly) of Kerry Phelan’s work in 2005 when The World Of Interiors featured a private residence that she had designed while she was at Hecker Phelan & Guthrie. I remember flicking through the pages and pausing at the sight of then very bold design of a modernist graffiti artwork on the wall of a transitional private staircase. The contrast was great and our attention towards it even greater. After 11 years working as a founding director in the firm, in 2010, Kerry Phelan established her own design practice K.P.D.O. In the same year, her long time collaborator Stephen Javens joined the practice as Director of Architecture. Since then, they have gone on to create great interiors where the detailed and luxurious ambience is key.
K.P.D.O.'s latest project of a Regency-style residence in Melbourne, Australia, consisted of a three year restoration and expansion and the outcome combines everything that we have come to expect from this design practice. With a main palette consisting mainly of white and Dulux’s ‘Timeless’ grey, the residence’s interior has been treated in a neutral palette which in turn emphasizes the structural detailing, furniture, wall finishes & soft upholstery within. Of course ‘Timeless’ was specified after a thorough and intense research, being the ultimate shade in order to compliment the artwork. And it is time consuming details such as these that are so mandatory in order to produce the perfect & controlled balance seen here so much in demand in the world of luxury interiors.
Other details include the light structure of the interior doors that create a weightless illusion which is perfectly balanced around the bespoke built-in library structure. The semi-circular door motive provides a great continuity through to the cupboard handles linking all the details together. Throughout the residence, colour is introduced through furniture, artwork and decorative objects. For example, in the main living room the Green Velvet Busnelli armchairs give all the ambience that is needed in the language of contemporary comfort. Of course the unique piece within this space is the vintage kilim from Behruz studio. This piece in itself is the epitome of elegance. Another great feature is the dining room ceiling pendant by one of our favorite designers Roll & Hill. This fixture combined with the purple velvet chairs by Eero Saarinen, the background ‘Timeless’ and the ceiling’s crown molding is a combination we love.
The kitchen has been designed around an atmospheric white palette with the use of white Calacatta marble with grey veining, giving out just enough movement to break the surrounding modernity. Here, the wooden floor adds to this notion of character and essence. Having walked up the black and white spiral staircase, in the private quarters the design philosophy is exactly the same: wide large wooden floor planks combined with luxurious soft carpets and cabinet mirrors where the balance of great living is evident everywhere. The master bed which is a bespoke design by K.P.D.O. is the main attraction of the master bedroom. While giving emphasis to the space it also creates a rear cupboard dressing corridor.
This is a residence where everything has been designed patiently with every detail thought through in every way. All the fixtures have been specified carefully, the furniture pieces have been allocated to give that sense of perfect comfort and we can say without a doubt that this is the work of K.P.D.O. that drew us to the designer Kerry Phelan from the very first glance back in 2005.