It was happenstance that brought Kelli Wilde and Laurent Champeau together—the couple met while working at the Paris office of the prestigious Mlinaric, Henry & Zervudachi interior design agency. Wilde, an American art historian and interior designer, and Champeau, a French-British architect and designer, founded their own interior design studio, Champeau & Wilde, in 2011.
Since then, the dynamic duo have worked on luxury homes in both the US and France. Their unique design approach combines revitalised, classical French sophistication with contemporary comfort—and the couple’s signature style is exemplified in their recently completed new home, a two-bedroom apartment in the culturally vibrant Nouvelle Athènes district in Paris.
The 1,600 sqft property hadn’t been altered since 1956, but the couple were particularly impressed with its full-length balcony and the light and space distribution. They spent nine months renovating and furnishing the space to transform it into their dream home.
“The idea was to mix styles, like the contemporary fireplace that we designed, juxtaposed with an 18th-century cornice,” explains Champeau, who redesigned the interiors to accentuate the 3.2m-high ceilings and the balcony. “This is peculiar to Parisian apartments; they can be historic yet modern.” They retained the classical aesthetics of the original space, but reconfigured the layout so the interiors resemble a large loft while reflecting elements of a hallmark French period home. The new floor plan enabled more expansive living and dining spaces with room for a double-hearth fireplace.