The “presiding grande dame of West Coast interior design,” Kelly Wearstler, is featured in a six-page profile in the Sept. 14 issue of The New Yorker.
I've always considered Wearstler (pronounced "Worst-ler") an enigma — wife of a hotel mogul, author, Top Design judge, crimped-hair enthusiast, Southern belle, ex-Playboy model — but her design skill is irrefutable. So, it was interesting to read about how the girl who grew up in a cluttered Myrtle Beach home decorated in a "blowsy Provincial style" became the face of ornate, layered, over-the-top Hollywood Regency style.
"You don’t hire her for her subtlety, you hire her for what her critics call ‘muchness'," said a client. Her style, as it turns out, is governed more by instinct than intellect: "I don't have time to think things through a lot. I just do how it feels," she says. I was also intrigued to hear that she thinks of herself as having "a very European sensibility" that's "well travelled, collected." Pick up a copy to read the full text or read an abstract online.