If you’re familiar with wildly successful homewares brand Kip&Co, then chances are you’re not a minimalist. Known for their glorious celebration of colour, pattern, and a chunky tassel or ten, there’s an irreverence and effervescence to the brand that’s stayed true to itself amidst the sea of neutral linens ruling trends. That quiet confidence comes back to its three founders.
It was 8 years ago that Hayley Pannekoecke launched Kip&Co with sister Kate and best friend Alex. What began as a bright and beautiful bedding business quickly expanded into a lifestyle brand, with a cult following and ranges for kids and babies as well as homewares, apparel, and even pet products.
As a trained naturopath, Hayley had previously run an organic lifestyle store along with her sister. But she says the move into designing was “an organic process…It wasn’t something I necessarily woke up and decided to do one day. It was part of my life already.”
Those natural instincts have served her well. Showing us through her stunning Barwon Heads home, it’s hard to imagine that she was ever destined for anything but design. A cacophony of colour and texture, her spaces are yet calming and warm. Quirky combinations – pattern clashing is a hallmark of Kip&Co – surprise and delight, and she has truly perfected the art of the kids bedroom. The key? “Let’s face it, all kids like colour.”
And with three children, the youngest of whom was only a baby when Kip&Co was founded, Hayley’s story is even more remarkable. Like many creatives, she found the return to work was “what I needed at the time…to get back into something for myself”.
We asked Hayley how she maintains such a breathtaking home with three kids, and were relieved to hear that the secret is the same as ours: “‘hiding’ things in cupboards!”
You started Kip & Co with your sister and your best friend in 2012. How far into your motherhood journey were you at that stage, and what was it like juggling a new business with kids in the mix?
When we kicked off in 2012 Chloe, my eldest, was 5, Baye nearly 2, and Floyd, my youngest, was only a baby. Like most mums, that time is a little bit of a blur, but I do remember some of the challenges of getting myself sorted to work again. Let’s just say I had my hands full! What I will say is that a creative outlet was just what I needed at that time, and after 2 years not working it was time to get back into something for myself.