Kate Challis, Principal of Kate Challis Interiors. Portrait by Sharyn Cairns

Kate Challis, Principal of Kate Challis Interiors. Portrait by Sharyn Cairns


Kate Challis Interiors is a Melbourne based design studio creating unique spaces that blur the line between art and design.

With practice grounded in art history and informed by a global perspective, the studio has a distinct visual aesthetic that results in highly resolved interiors.

An evocative approach to storytelling informs considered collaborations with skilled artists and makers to seamlessly realise layered, emotive design.

The studio is recognised for its signature mastery of colour and an innate understanding of the relationship between art and function, conceiving exceptional spaces and transformative experiences.

As the granddaughter of the late Bernard Smith — esteemed art historian and one of Australia’s most important thinkers — principal Kate Challis grew up amongst prominent artists, writers and intellectuals.

Not only did these formative experiences bestow upon Kate a love of art and of aesthetics, they instilled in her a deep visual language in which she became fluent at an early age.

Having completed a Ph.D in Art History; today Kate remains active as a scholar, and is on the Board of RAKA, one of the first awards established for Indigenous Art in Australia. Kate is also on the Board of the Centre for Projection Arts.

The culmination of these experiences has allowed Kate to define a uniquely layered and emotive signature, affirming Kate Challis Interiors as specialists in the creation of interior spaces that marry aesthetics with pragmatism, business with beauty, and people with their surroundings.

Awards & Accolades

2019 - The Design Files Awards — Interior Design Finalist
2019 - Belle Coco Republic Interior Design Awards — Emerging Design Star Finalist
2019 - Dulux Colour Awards - Finalist

2019 - NGV (Women’s Association) Art of Dining - The Best of the Best Participant

2018 - Vogue Living’s 10 Most Popular Houses of 2018