Keeping Up with Kate Spiers Keeping Up with Kate Spiers

One of Scotland's leading interior design experts talks to us all about how she started out, where she finds her inspiration, and what the world of design and decoration has in store for us this year...

One of Scotland's leading interior design experts talks to us all about how she started out, where she finds her inspiration, and what the world of design and decoration has in store for us this year...

When it comes to interior design, Kate Spiers is a cut above the rest. Though she only recently turned 30, this quick-witted entrepreneur and TV personality is armed with more than 10 years of experience in content creation. As a judge for the hit TV show SHOTY, Scotland's Home of the Year, Kate is currently touring Scotland on the lookout for the country’s most stunning properties. Back home in Glasgow, her own (very beautiful and recently renovated) Victorian home is equally as noteworthy.

Charming, straightforward, and garbed in a signature light summer dress, Kate introduces us to her work and gives us a glimpse of her everyday life. Looking at the photos she shares with her 300,000+ followers, they might as well be taken from an artfully curated coffee-table book. They show a confident woman, very much in love with her husband (and her two cats) and who, unquestionably, is a complete professional.

In our exclusive interview, Kate shares with us some stories from her professional and personal life, and tells us her top tips and tricks for career growth and interior decoration trends—and she explains why it pays to persevere when you’ve found your true passion.

You have a beautiful home and clearly have an eye for detail! Have you always had an affinity for design? What drew you to working in this field initially?

Thank you! Actually no, I don’t have a design background at all so I’ve learnt along the way (and I’m still learning!), but it’s definitely something I feel passionate about.

When I bought my first flat here in Glasgow, I started sharing snippets of the renovation process online and it went from there—I love that social media has inspired a new generation of people to appreciate their homes. Interior design has become so much more accessible in the last few years, and people are having fun with it—and I think a lot of that is down to bloggers sharing their homes online and showing that anyone can update their spaces and find their style, even if they’re not a designer.

You started blogging over 10 years ago and are now a host and judge on Scotland’s Home of the Year, which was nominated for a Scottish BAFTA. How would you describe your professional journey? Perhaps you have some tips for those interested in following a similar path?

Yes, it’s been a bit of a whirlwind! I could never have predicted I would be where I am now. I have quite a positive attitude to my work, and I try to be open to all opportunities, and I think that is what is so fun about my career path—you never know what might come your way!

I think my advice would be to stick at it. It’s taken me over ten years of consistent hard work to get where I am, and there have definitely been times where I’ve found it tough or considered slowing down—but I stuck at it and I’ve created this really joyful space online.

What design trends do you foresee dominating in 2021 that are worth investing in now?

I think we’re going in with colour at the moment! There are so many fun paint brands popping up, and everyone seems to be going big with bright paint choices, bold upcycled furniture and of course, gallery walls! I’m also seeing a lot of panelling at the moment, especially with a half-painted wall and lots of bold artwork. I love it!

What accounts do you follow for your interior inspiration? What should we be reading and who should we be following to get our creative juices flowing?

Oh I have so many! @charlottejacklin - her love of pastels makes me so happy, and I love how confident she is when it comes to mixing prints and patterns. @jnaydaily - Janea is living out my LA dreams! Her home is beautiful, and like Charlotte, she shows that you can do a lot to your home even if you’re renting. @em.gurner - Emma is an interior designer and her work is wonderful, her style is so unique!

You live in a characterful tenement property in Glasgow, and the renovations you recently carried out could be considered a labour of love - what tips can you share around refurbishing and styling a home yourself?

Yes it was quite the project! I would say to live in the space first to get an idea of how you use it - it will make it so much easier to design the kitchen or plan the layout of a room once you know what you love or don’t love about the room first. I would also always encourage risks, especially with paint or big pieces of art or fun furniture—you can always switch them out down the line if you’re not a fan, but I think that’s how you find your style, by taking risks!

We love the gallery walls you’ve created in your living room and bedroom. What would you say is the secret to creating a perfect gallery wall?

I LOVE a gallery wall! In my Victorian tenement flat, the walls are very high so we tend to go big when it comes to creating a wall of art. I prefer a random cluster of larger prints, with a similar theme - usually mostly wood frames to add warmth, but occasionally a white or gold frame thrown in. The best thing about it is that once you have the frame, it’s relatively easy to change out your gallery wall over time too. You just buy a print that fits the frame and instantly the space feels like new!

In your blog, you emphasise the importance of self-care and taking time to look after your mental health. How do you balance all your commitments and projects in a way that works for you?

I try to work typical working hours, so I stay off my phone in the evenings and always give myself the weekends off. I usually get all my socialising and housework done on Saturday so I have Sunday to relax with a face mask and my book. I’m all about a good self-care routine! In terms of work, I try to be quite organised—I use my diary to add in deadlines and make lists daily to tackle tasks and try to finish each day with a clear inbox.

Thank you so much, Kate! While we kick back with another episode of SHOTY, why not take a look at Kate's curated collection and get inspired by her amazing interior design ideas & style confidence?

Text: Eva Klann

Translation: Anna Fleck