Meet the Interior Designer: Matthew Williamson

Our exclusive Q&A with stellar fashion designer and now interiors genius Matthew Williamson...

Already a star name in fashion, print and product design, in recent years Matthew Williamson has brought his gorgeous, immediately-recognisable aesthetic to the world of interiors. In our exclusive Q&A Matthew talks about lighting, Mallorca and 'rustic decadence'...

You first made your mark in the 1990s, but in the fashion world (famously with the ‘Electric Angels’ collection). How did you come to move into interior design?

Moving from fashion into interiors was quite a slow natural transition for me. Whilst I focused on fashion for 20 years as my main career I’ve always been interested in interior design. I guess it was a hobby that has more recently become more prominent and now the main part of my work.

Over the years I’ve designed homes and hotels, helped along with my collaboration of wallpapers and finishing fabrics which I’ve been doing for Osborne and Little for the past five years. Whilst fashion and interiors are different creative fields, there’s a lot of overlapping so I’ve taken all my learnings from fashion over the years and now apply a similar philosophy to interior design.

How would you describe your interior design style? To what extent is it informed by your fashion and product design aesthetic?

I call my style “rustic decadence.” It’s a good phrase which I find helps explain my work in a nutshell - especially when working with clients. It also provides me with a mental reference point when working to make sure I keep true to my DNA.

Belmond La Residencia, Mallorca. Image: Matthew Williamson
Belmond La Residencia, Mallorca. Image: Matthew Williamson
Belmond La Residencia, Mallorca. Image: Matthew Williamson

What inspires you now?

My work is more often than not influenced by nature and artistic and creative influences from the countries I’ve visited. Working with local craftsmen has always been a passion of mine. Right now I’m inspired by Spain quite a lot as I have a house in the mountains of Deia, a small costal village on the island of Mallorca.

I take inspiration from history too and my most favourite decade to reference is the 1970s.

Belmond La Residencia, Mallorca (Including a Pooky wall light!...). Image: Matthew Williamson
...And a Pooky ikat shade featuring at Belmond La Residencia, Mallorca. Image: Matthew Williamson

How does lighting play a part in your interiors?

Lighting is a crucial part of any interior design concept. It’s one of the first jobs I look at when designing rooms and I always ensure there’s enough lighting opportunities to create different zones and atmospheres in a space. I’ve just launched my own line of luxury candles and these have been designed specifically to help create unique environments within a space. They each have a unique pattern and enable great focal points in a room as well as providing a wonderful scent of course.

Matthew's candle collection. Image: Matthew Williamson

Which recent project are you particularly happy with?

I’ve just finished designing a suite at La Residencia hotel in Spain. The suite takes inspiration from the hotels history, the local environment with a good dose of an English country cottage style. It has a wonderful home from home feeling, and is full of colour, pattern and of course Pooky lighting.

Belmond La Residencia, Mallorca. Image: Matthew Williamson
Belmond La Residencia, Mallorca. Image: Matthew Williamson
Belmond La Residencia, Mallorca. Image: Matthew Williamson

Do you have a particular favourite corner or room (in your home or anywhere) that you feel is 'all your own'?

My favourite space in my London home is my bedroom. It’s a big space with high ceilings, great cornicing and Bay windows looking out to my garden. The room design is quite simple which I like for a bedroom as it keeps things calm. The walls are painted in Farrow and balls light blue and I have a wonderful dusty pink ostrich feather floor lamp in the corner to add a decadent, whimsical touch. My bed linen is from my own homeware line at Debenhams.

Matthew's bedroom. Image: Matthew Williamson

Finally, do you have a favourite Pooky light (and if so, why that one?)

I’ve got a few Pooky lights dotted around my home and have used them in recent projects as they are great prices and you can find really great styles. I have the Moroccan inspired glass and metal star light in my daughters bedroom and I’ve just used the mint green floor lamp in another bedroom, It’s a wonderful modern take on a classic which I love.

See more of Matthew's work, including his wallpapers, stationery, furniture and much more at You can also follow him on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest.

Portrait top: Robin Gautier.