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fortune favours the bold

From Habitat magazine - issue 30

A Christchurch colour-lover finds her purpose.

In 2013, Becky Lee hit the reset button and became clear about what direction she wanted to take with her personal and professional life.

For as long as I can remember, colour and interiors have been my passion. It’s just in my blood,” Becky says. “It had become increasingly important to me that I needed to be working in a creative industry and interiors have always been a passion of mine, so it was a natural fit.”

By mid-2017, after completing her Interior Design Diploma, her business, Becky Lee Interiors, was up and running – and she’s never looked back.

Bright lounge and dining room colours
Left: Resene Rouge in Becky’s lounge.  Right: Becky says her dining table in Resene Smitten always makes her visitors smile.

As a 'people person', what Becky loves most about being a designer is the clients she works with. “I really enjoy building a relationship with my clients and getting to know them and their individual style,” she says. “I particularly enjoy jobs where the client has a strong sense of personal style and is open to me challenging and expanding on this by showing them options that they wouldn’t know existed or even usually consider - that’s when the magic happens!”

When it comes to developing designs for those clients, she says that her childhood and love of colour has impacted her style and inspires her work.

“I grew up in a household where colour and creativity were abundant. My infinitely practical and capable mum constantly reinvented spaces at home. She would paint and stencil large spaces, hang wallpaper, upholster furniture, sew curtains, make cushions and more. She has her own unique style and is the quintessential maker and a source of inspiration for me."

In a world filled with neutral interiors, many find her bright personal style vibrant and refreshing. “My style at home is definitely exuberant! I have had my work described as a ‘choreographed fiesta, a juxtaposition of patterns and colours arranged to create both visual impact and balance’ – and I like that description. I have also had my work described as soulful, which is a great compliment, because I strive to tell the story of the homeowners I work with.”

“I’m influenced by all kinds of design from French Empire and Hollywood Regency, to Palm Beach where colour is combined fearlessly, the look is interesting and layered, details are important and textiles rule.”

While every job is completely different, Becky says that agonising over paint colours is a common challenge for clients. “It’s easy to get it wrong - especially if you are wanting a more creative palette.” But, she knows she can always fall back on her Resene The Range fashion colours fandeck. “I have always used Resene. I know and trust the products to perform and I receive fantastic support and service.”

Reflective nature

Becky has just released her first collection of artworks in collaboration with artist Anneke Stewart.

 Becky and Anneke, artwork

The collection features elaborate arrangements of flowers grown by Becky or foraged from the red zone along with vintage hand-painted silks and furnishing fabrics. Combined with Anneke’s signature mandala style, the result is a rich kaleidoscopic work saturated with beautiful colour.

You can find them at

Becky's favourite colours

Becky recently painted her guest bedroom in Resene Swiss Caramel, which she plans to team with cobalt blue bedding. “Resene Just Dance is a lovely restful colour and it looks amazing with terracotta, greens, warm whites and denim blues.”

“I’m also having a love affair with olive at the moment and I really like the swampy nature of Resene New Leaf. For more conservative palettes, it pairs well with neutrals, natural fibres and earthy tones. For the risk takers, I love it with burnt orange, mustard or deep red/browns.”

She says that Resene Porter is her go-to black for its soft edge, making it highly usable without over dominating, and likes that Resene Smitten “packs a punch but makes a joyful accent.” She used it in a high gloss finish on her dining table and says “it makes everyone who sees it smile!”

Resene Swiss Caramel

Resene Just Dance

Resene New Leaf

Resene Porter

See more of Becky's work at Becky Lee Interiors.

Images: Juliet Anne Nicholas


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