Kitty & Burns – Contemporary Scandi

Abbotsford’s Skipping Girl is one of the little local curiosities that grew on to take a significance and a charm well beyond its original intentions, being Australia’s first animated neon sign. The sign has been removed, re-installed, renovated and redesigned over the years all while the space beneath has changed hands. This time, that space is in the hands of Kitty Burns, an eatery that seeks not only to take advantage of the limelight (or the neon light) from below but to keep the story alive in every aspect of its design.

A tale of two girls

Kitty and Burns were the names of the two sisters who have both had their fame as the models of the different generations of the Skipping Girl. It’s those girls that the restaurant seeks to emulate and in particularly interesting fashion. The design, by award-winning studio Biasol, pits the setting as a clash between personalities, of one fictional character embodying the personalities of two sisters that clash, combine, and collaborate to create a fresh space that isn’t short on ideas.

Kitty’s side

Kitty, the more playful and light of the two, comes alive quite literally in the potted plants and vertical trestles of lively (but neatly kept) vines that give the contemporary space a fresh angle that might otherwise be a little too clean cut and a little too contemporary. That zest for life is seen in the soft turquoise of the tiles, the primary colour beyond the green of the plant-life.

Burns’s side

Burns, on the other hand, is described as the more disciplined, perhaps more conservative of the pair. The influence of that sister is seen in the clean, solid, but still childishly fresh softwood chairs and tables. It’s also in the neat overhead structures and walls that add a little class to Kitty’s natural touches. Together, the pair creates a space that looks brand new every time you visit, neat, bright, and just the right mix of lively and clean. The characters can be seen in different strengths all throughout the extensive interior with a central bar serving as the focal point. It’s more than a little fun to walk around those different areas and wonder whether Kitty or whether Burns is winning there.

The perfect fit

The two sides of the restaurant don’t just fit one another, but they suit the area perfectly, too. While Skipping Girl might be the inspiration, Kitty Burns has to contend with the very modern Haven apartment complex but also the natural beauty-packed Yarra Bend just a walk away. That mix of neat and contemporary versus natural and bright makes it the perfect meeting between those two worlds. It’s an eatery that appreciates all that’s around it, too, with multi-layered levels of roof opening it to natural light, making it surroundings very much a fixture it uses to its advantage, not a distraction it seeks to close out.

Biasol’s work with Kitty Burns is inspiring, not just for patrons who have loved the spot since its launch, but to designers. Themes are easy, but creating characters with interior design gives you much more to explore and a much richer experience to end up with.


Have a look at the Windsor Dining Chair, Olea Round White Table Base & Windsor Arm Chair featured in this restaurant.


Copyright © Kitty Burns & Biasol Interior Design

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