TEXTILES designer Kirath Ghundoo, 36, from Darlington, is known for her bold style and mix ‘n’ match wallpapers. As she prepares to launch her new designs at Decorex in London, she talks about what inspires her designs

Have you always been creative?

YES, I opted for all the arty subjects. I loved painting, photography and creating large pieces of work, which is related to the way in which I design today. I didn’t think too much about my work being commercial when I was younger; I just created without thinking about an end product. After school, I studied Printed Textiles at Leeds, then did a Masters at Huddersfield, where I set up my design business, before moving back to Darlington and launching my first wallpaper collection in 2011. Since then I’ve travelled for work and inspiration and have exhibited at many trade shows over the years to build my network and establish my business. I’m proud to be a young British Indian pursing my goals of developing a creative business.

Why did you decide to focus on surface pattern design?

Many of the skills I’ve learnt have been self-taught, especially digitally. I’ve always loved pattern and colour and subconsciously pick up on the vibe within fashion print or interior spaces. Surface pattern design is so broad and after graduating and travelling, I found myself being drawn to surface print.

The Northern Echo:

How would you describe your signature style?

My signature style is bold, bright, unique and cheerful. I aim to create designs that evoke happy spaces with a wow factor. The mix ’n’ match wallpaper style I’ve become known for is fun, and I love the idea that one roll can create a number of different layouts. Ten clients can buy the same roll, and all achieve different looks, either by pasting it up landscape or portrait, or cutting different sections.

When developing the concept, I wanted to challenge the pre-conceived ideas of what wallpaper is and can be. The mix ’n’ match style doesn’t rely on repeats, so it’s sustainable with minimal wastage, and the client becomes part of the final design by creating a layout and statement feature wall unique to them.

What inspires your designs?

I’m inspired by everyday things around me. This could be an idea sparked from a conversation, someone’s street style, fashion prints, colour combinations within architecture and my surroundings; even music can evoke a creative idea. Many of my designs have been inspired by places I’ve travelled to. I’m excited by being immersed in a different environment and soaking up new cultures. From Cuba and India to Colombia and Miami, I’ve created a diverse range of wallpaper collections inspired by travel.

The Northern Echo:

What surfaces can we see your designs printed on?

My designs are printed onto wallpaper, including standard white and a new luxury gold base. I have also recently launched a new furnishing velvets range. All my wallpapers and fabrics are suitable for commercial and domestic interiors.

As a surface designer, I have collaborated with other brands and companies to design patterns for their surfaces. From see-through vinyl, tote bags, cushions, mattresses, kitchen splash backs, lampshades, concrete tiles and iPhone covers, my designs are versatile and have been printed onto a number of surfaces.

Tell us about a couple of your career highs.

Being nominated for an ELLE Decoration British Design Award, and being runner-up in Best Young Designer for Homes and Gardens. Lee Broom is a designer I have admired since starting my journey and watching his business grow over the past couple of years has been inspiring. Lee nominated me for London Rising Star for London Magazine, which was a pretty cool career high.

Other highlights include a dream project with Wax Revolution in Mexico, re-designing the salon walls with creative freedom, and a challenging project working on the bespoke wallpaper for the new CPI (Centre for Process Innovation) building here in Darlington – making corporate cool. I’ve also been collaborating with Blik, in Los Angeles, on a self-adhesive pattern tile range, which were selected to design happy walls at Snapchat HQ.

I fee super blessed to work with people who are fans of my work and me!

The Northern Echo:

Tell me about the six collections you will be launching at Decorex?

Even though these collections are all available to buy now, it will be the first time they are on display for trade/public viewing. The mix ’n’ match style of wallpapers is for a certain bold customer and in creating the KG Bolds 19 and KG Classics 19 collections, I wanted to design a range of wallpapers that would target a wider audience. While still reflecting my bold and quirky style, these geometric repeating designs can be used by anyone from a residential customer to an eccentric interior designer.

The KG Bolds 19 collection explores a range of strong graphic wallpapers suitable for exciting interior projects. Adopting strong lines and sharp angles, this eclectic range of patterns is suitable for any commercial or residential project. Riad and Marina are inspired by the colours and vibrancy of travels to Marrakesh and Singapore; TRI is available in six sumptuous colourways to suit a number of looks; Weave is a stylish geometric with grey and khaki green hues bringing warmth to your interiors; Alpha is a strong graphical pattern suitable for ultra-modern chic spaces.

The KG Classics 19 collection introduces a range of contemporary classic geometric designs. Inspired by city escapes, I created a range of patterns that capture vision and experience from my adventures to different cities. I adore the opulence of grand stately spaces and envision this collection styled with classic features such as panelling, beautiful coving details and ceiling roses. Exploring a rich, luxurious and sultry colour palette, this collection offers customers a range of classical wallpapers with a KG modern twist.

The Northern Echo:

This year I have also designed a new line of 12 furnishing velvets available in a luxe or marble finish that will launch at Decorex. The range of patterns has been designed to complement the wallpaper range, suiting a variety of interiors looks. The velvets can be used to upholster chairs, sofas, make curtains, blinds, cushions, throws and headboards and much more. Suitable for and both domestic and contract interiors. I can’t wait to see an interior space designed using both my wallpaper and fabrics.

The Mismatch 18 wallpaper collection has never been publicly exhibited so I’m excited for clients to see the Verde and Cali wallpapers close up, which are certainly some of my favourite designs and were inspired by my travels. Cali, Colombia and Verde have no match up or repeat so you can cut and paste wherever you wish to create an exciting feature wall unique to you. Set in the mountains, Bogota and Medellin boast amazing greenery amongst the hustle and bustle of cosmopolitan city life, inspiring the Verde design. Cali breathes salsa and the urban graffiti backdrops throughout the city are mesmerising, I loved transforming the vibe of the city into a wallpaper design.

The Northern Echo:

Finally, the pièce to résistance is the luxury bespoke gold base wallpaper that will also be on display at Decorex. The stand will explore a new deco vibe with the Miami 18 design printed onto the gold. The gold base is the perfect choice for all areas in residential and commercial interiors, such as hotels, restaurants, bars, offices and retail environments.

  • Kirath will be on Stand J262, Decorex International, Olympia, London, from October 6-9.