Kelly Wearstler slapped me silly

Before I picked up Hue - the new book by Kelly Wearstler this week, I didn't think I'd have any desire to buy it.  In fact, I expected not to like it.  Nonetheless, I'd been looking in my local bookstore, waiting for it to show up.

I was waiting because I'm a big Kelly Wearstler fan.  I have a whole collection of magazine clippings of her work, interviews, etc.  I own both Modern Glamour and Domicilium Decoratus.  Although Modern Glamour was my favorite and easier for me to take in, even Domicilium Decoratus had it's way with me too.

I've seen some of Kelly's work in magazines the last few years, and although I admire her brash confidence, and her forays into the new, I truly didn't really get it or like it. 

As I browsed, I felt conflicted.  Was it beautiful? Was it terrible? Was it gorgeous? Was it hideous?  Was it gaudy? Was it bold? Was it brave? One thing was certain, I was awestruck.  It reached out, grabbed me by the throat and demanded my attention.  It refused to be ignored.

It struck me that her work here was not so much about creating a space that was pleasing to the eye and attractive - it was about creating a space that would stimulate you, shock you, surprise you, refuse to be categorized.  In fact, it didn't strike me as interior design as much as pure art - living in pure art.

Putting the book back on the shelf I felt a new admiration for Kelly Wearstler - for her willingness to keep pressing into the edge of new, toying with absurdity, defining beauty in a completely fresh way.

For me, my home is still home - a place I want to be tidy, clean, cozy, attractive - my nest.  I have neither the time, nor bountiful bank account to ever have a home as wild work of art, ala the divine Kelly Wearstler. Yet, the book inspired me to see beauty outside of my preconceived definitions.  And I walked away with a twinge of desire to buy it.  Perhaps I will...


  1. I think a lot of things Kelly does are great - bold and inventive. I agree, though, that I wouldn't want many of them in my own home!

  2. Love this post. I keep going back to it and re-reading...super inspiring!

  3. Thanks Carlie! I was hoping someone else could relate to my stunned feeling - finding that I'm okay to be pleasantly surprised and shocked by art and style sometimes instead of merely rocked to gentle sleep.