Kip Founders, Sarah de Vere-Drummond and Liz Simpson, join us for the latest instalment of Curated By…
Founding Kip Hideaways in 2019, travel aficionados Sarah de Vere-Drummond and Liz Simpson bridged a gap in the market, offering travellers a curated selection of the best rentals across the UK. Now, they’ve done it again with Kip Kiosk, a one-stop shop for the items found in their hideaways, hand-crafted by specialist independent makers from across the UK.
Here, the duo share a first peek at Kiosk with CF readers.
How did Kip Kiosk come to be?
It felt like a really natural progression for the brand; our ethos is small places with soul, and so much of that soul comes from the gorgeous interior styling and careful curation of homewares in the hideaways. We found that many of our members were using the site for design inspiration for their own homes, and we were getting inundated with requests on where to find various pieces, so we thought, let’s make this easier and actually create a one stop-shop that showcases them all.
What is your design philosophy?
Above all, we look for properties that are utterly unique – nothing generic – and so much of this is down to the homewares. Typical Kip hideaways display objets from a range of places; ceramics by independent artisans, a gorgeous Welsh wool blanket from a local mill, treasures collected on the owner’s travels, vintage furniture, Etsy trinkets… Our owners are so clever at blending all of their finds together to create something very special.
How would you describe your aesthetic?
Pared back. The interiors can be modern, rustic-chic, high-end, or very simple, they just have to wow us. And we’re mostly drawn by a less-is-more philosophy, which allows all of the individual elements of a place to shine.
Where do you get your inspiration?
Many avenues; it’s an ongoing thing. We’re inspired by creative friends and family, places we travel to, things we read and see, and also by people we meet – writers, photographers, artisans, chefs, designers, all of whom are so interesting. Bristol (where we live) is a really creative hub.
Also, of course, by the beautiful Kip hideaways themselves, the gorgeous UK landscapes they sit within, and their owners, all of whom we love chatting to.
I guess it all continually churns together in our heads and Sarah and I tend to have our best lightbulb moments when we get away together, usually on a Kip hideaway stay! I think it’s being able to escape the day-to-day, slow down and have the time to just talk through things in a different environment. We’ve been to Scotland together twice for a Kip trip, and long walks in epic wilderness surroundings really inspire our thought processes.
List some independent makers you really admire and tell us why you admire them…
We are in awe of our amazing Kiosk makers and the talent and love they pour into their work.
Lottie Mayland, takes so much precision and care over her hand-embroidered napkins. She thoroughly researches all her designs, basing them on illustrations, then painstakingly sources the perfect variations of thread colours. She then spends days embroidering each set, whilst also taking care of her baby daughter.
Karen from Kettle of Fish Designs is a collector of wonderful objects, who hates to throw anything away. She up-cycles and repurposes everyday, vintage and discarded items into something useful, beautiful, and unique. For example, her Bee miniatures are made from vintage bee illustrations with up-cycled French curtain rings. Even small pieces of lampshade backing are salvaged to become candle shades or provide a stiffener for prints, and fabric offcuts are reused for small prints, buttons and brooches. Such an inspiration.
With a background in ceramics and design, Keeley Traae bought a 3D printer to play with during the lockdown, and ended up designing a collection of 3D printed mini vases. Sustainability is at the core of her business model, with all her vases made from bioplastic, which is renewable, biodegradable, and compostable. She is also a lecturer at Staffordshire Uni, inspiring future generations of makers, and has another business, offering design services to clients.
Some of your favourite places to shop for/source homewares…
As all of the items on the Kiosk can be found in one of our hideaways, we find the homewares via our owners, who have an amazing eye for quality workmanship.
In terms of shopping for our own homes, we’ve become so much more conscious of shopping small since starting Kip. Bristol is full of brilliant independents, like Makers on Colston Street, Mon Pote on North Street, and Truce in Clifton. The Sunday Market at the Tobacco Factory is brilliant and St Nicholas’ Market is a maze of quirky stores. We also spend hours poring over Instagram and Etsy for undiscovered talent!
How does travelling influence your designs and tastes?
We’ve both been lucky enough to travel a lot over the years, and certain countries have really honed and inspired our taste. Portugal, Sri Lanka, and Morocco are places we’ve visited a lot, and their souks and shops are full of really incredible homewares by independent artisans. Understanding how different cultures and landscapes shape the design process and materials used is fascinating. It’s especially enriching to see bold new progressive design techniques or really old traditional craftsmanship being used to create unique features and working out how we can introduce them into our own creative projects.
What are some tips you have on how our readers can bring a touch of Kip magic into their homes?
It’s often the little touches that can really elevate a room – stunning ceramics, a beautiful piece of art that really draws the eye, even a scent. The Kiosk allows anyone who is inspired by our hideaways to add a flavour of that aesthetic in a surprisingly affordable and achievable way (prices start at £5), by just adding one or two timeless pieces to their homes. Plus, there is an added joy that some of our pieces are pretty rare, even one-offs.