The pandemic brought out many forms of hobby consumerism. While some people were hoarding stacks of toilet paper, masks, and other healthcare essentials, others, such as Eileen Kelly, flourished by building a home filled with niche vintage finds sourced from the internet. Eileen, otherwise known by her former Instagram handle and current brand Killerandasweetthang, has spent the last decade making a prominent name for herself in the sexual health and wellness space, garnering nearly half a million followers in the process. Today, her wisdom has found a new outlet thanks to a Spotify podcast, Going Mental, in which she hosts candid mental health discussions with a slew of prominent guests (including Bella Thorne, Madison Beer, Alex Cooper, and Aimee Song). “I think if I had taken a different path, it would definitely have been interior design. I just love it,” she says.
After finding a dream deal in the peak of the pandemic market, the influencer secured a 3-year lease in downtown Manhattan. With plenty of time to scour Chairish, Etsy, eBay, and other favorites for staples—such as a large Chairish sofa that anchors the living room, Eileen started to craft her abode. When it came to her quirky knickknacks, she opted to buy from smaller antique shops. Given the vision of creating “a 1970s midcentury vibe,” vintage was a must. “I wanted everything to be brown and beige and just kind of uniform in color,” Eileen says of the common area, citing an old book of interiors (one of her many collections) as a primary source of inspiration. Yet despite the uniformity in color, every nook and corner exudes a vibrant, old-school exuberance. A carefully curated one-of-a-kind home brimming with swoon-worthy collectibles: It’s unmistakably Eileen.
Square footage: About 1,000 square feet
What were some of the first things you did when moving into the space? I painted my kitchen cabinets green and my bathroom black. My bedroom is professionally painted by a friend who did an amazing job. I also ordered new hardware for the cabinets from Amazon. Super cheap, but they were really ugly when I moved in, so I just did a brushed brass knob.
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What was your inspiration? I’m very inspired by the 1950s and how they would have these monochrome sets. Pink toilet matching the pink bathtub matching the pink tile. I just really like that, I think it’s very calming and homey. So yeah, that’s why my bedroom is fully pink: pink wall, pink rug, pink bedding, pink curtains, pink ottoman—all about the same shade. I feel like I did that in my living room and dining room too.
I have this book of lofts, with spaces mainly from the ’50s to the ’70s. There’s one space in particular, a SoHo loft with huge ceilings and a massive mirror. It really inspired me to have one for this space and the setup. I just felt like the mirror almost makes it feel bigger. It’s also fun. Mirrored rooms were part of the style back then.
What was your biggest spurge item? The rug I’m on right now [in the dining area] used to be the rug in my old apartment, which fit because the space was much smaller. When I moved here, it was under the couch for a while, and then I found it was getting half cut off through the room. So my big purchase was a Stark carpet [to place underneath the living room sofa]. It’s wall-to-wall carpeting and they just cut and bound it in a custom size.
What is something special you collect? I collect vintage china, but I don’t keep it all in my apartment. I keep that at my dad’s house. I find this beautiful hand-painted bone china for so cheap because most young people don’t want their parents’ china anymore, which people used to get as wedding gifts. So now I just see it all the time on eBay, Etsy, and even Chairish. It will be a whole matching set for like $10. And it probably was thousands back then. Eventually when I move to a house or move out of the city, I’ll hopefully have space for it all.
Tell me about your art? I have an abstract painting, projecting shadows and leaves, which is my nicest piece. Then an Al Freeman comparison, which is from a gallery in New York that my friends work at. It’s next to a cat in the same position. I have a lot of cat-inspired art. I feel like a lot of my friends work in the art world, so they’ll send me stuff and be like, ‘Oh my gosh, this cat, you have to get this.’ I do have a lot of paintings of my actual cat, which I’ll post on Instagram. It’s really funny, people just send them to me as gifts. I’ve never actually bought one. It’s usually people who do pet portraits online.
Then I have prints from poster websites. If you frame it nicely, it looks like a nice piece of art, and doesn’t cost more than a hundred bucks. So that was kind of my main thing when making a gallery wall. I chose all light oak frames, which ties it together. I found some art on Chairish as well.
What does your work space look like? I usually work from home…. I’ve recorded over Zoom, but I’m now moving into the phase of doing all my interviews in person with a guest. Before I used to rent a different studio space in New York, but then I thought, ‘You know what? I’m going to create a home studio. It’ll pay off.’ In a couple episodes anyway.