Yorkshire was top of the list when Kelly Hoppen decided to open her first store outside London. Sharon Dale reports
Redbrick Mill is celebrating another major coup after Kelly Hoppen chose the Yorkshire-based homeware emporium as the location for her first store outside London and the South East.
Former Dragon’s Den star Kelly is one of the nation’s best-known interior designers and pioneer of a zen-inspired style that combines opulence with a calm, neutral colour palette. While she is still the designer of choice for the super rich, she now has her own range of homeware, which includes furniture, bed linen, cushions and tableware.
It launched online just over a year ago and, along with a showroom in Chiswick, there are shops at Westfield and BlueWater shopping centres. Her move north is part of an expansion plan. Here she answers some Life and Style questions:
Q: Why did you decide to launch your own products?
A: Launching Kelly Hoppen has been a dream for a very long time. I am a perfectionist and have always been very proud of the quality of my products and designs. I chose to invest time and substantial funds to launch my own range. Since our launch in January 2014, we have exceeded all of our sales targets and we have achieved this by working, for the most part, with European manufacturers who can provide the quality we demand within the time frames we need. We run a slick operation at head office, I design and my team of experienced buyers manage the manufacture and quality control – it’s a winning combination.
Q: Why have you launched in Yorkshire?
A: It was only natural to expand so that we can reach the rest of the country and Redbrick is the perfect location. I plan to have more stores in the future, in regions all over the UK and then internationally. There is no rush though, as I feel that it is important to nurture my current stores to ensure they thrive.
Q: You have a signature style but has it altered over the years?
A: For the last 40 years I have been known for my love of neutral colour palettes. I have accent colours in my interiors but for the first time I have designed some brightly- coloured and bold products – my cubes which have recently launched.
Q: Do you resent the Queen of Taupe label?
A: I think it is a fair as I am very openly obsessed with taupe. However, as mentioned, I have warmed to brighter colours.
Q:Do you have any plans for the future where business is concerned?
A: My brain is always ticking with new ideas. Business-wise, I am focused on my Kelly Hoppen stores and am also working as an ambassador with the government’s GREAT campaign to support creative businesses. I’m also designing numerous projects globally.
Q: You are exceptionally busy. How do you relax?
A: I really love to unwind by spending time at home or in the country. It is the simple things like watching TV on my cosy sofa with my family, which make me feel relaxed. I also make sure I take a lovely, sunny holiday every year with the family where I can switch off and let my hair down.
*The Kelly Hoppen store is at Redbrick Mill, Batley, www.redbrickmill.co.uk