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The Cushy, Kinky, High-Wire World of Ken Fulk

Scenes from a new book devoted to the designer’s Gatsbyesque lifestyle.

SLIDESHOW

The Magic Factory.

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The portrait hall in Pacific Heights' Birch Castle.

Photo: Matthew Millman

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Ken Fulk.

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The 1920s Jacobean revival home, designed by Fulk.

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Synchronized swimmers at one of Fulk's Reveals.

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The launch party for the C Social Front website, at the Magic Factory.

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The mahogany bar at Carbone restaurant in Las Vegas.

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The cover of Mr. Ken Fulk’s Magical World.

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Growing up in Virginia, interior designer Ken Fulk fancied himself “a sort of colonial Great Gatsby.” Now he’s the visionary behind homes, bashes, and restaurants from Pacific Heights to the Vegas Strip. Here, images from his new book, Mr. Ken Fulk’s Magical World, offer a glimpse into the magic maker’s Gatsbyesque lifestyle.

The Magic Factory
In 2007, Fulk purchased a 16,000-square-foot, century-old SoMa building. The four-story design factory was formerly home to Mr. S Leather, an S&M leather manufacturer. The salvaged Mr. S sign now resides on the loft terrace.

Fulk the magician
The portrait hall in the entryway of Birch Castle, the Pacific Heights home of Michael and Xochi Birch. Ken Fulk wanted the home to be “part English manor, part rockstar lair,” complete with a full English pub and an outdoor cinema.

Fulk the archivist
An ornate tracery ceiling and antique velvet panels adorn the 1920s Jacobean revival home of two Fulk clients in the Presidio. The designer completely reimagined the house, top to bottom, without any input from the owners—a common working method for him, which is followed by what he theatrically calls the Reveal.

Fulk the showman
Fulk imbued this Coachella Valley home with “Rat Pack–era swagger and some old-school Palm Springs glamour.” The Reveal included a Dean Martin impersonator and a trio of retro synchronized swimmers. 

Fulk the host
The launch party for the C Social Front website, at the Magic Factory. Fulk is famed for his over-the-top parties that intermingle “blue bloods, billionaires, drag queens, and leather daddies,” as he puts it.

Fulk the restaurateur
The vintage mahogany bar in the Fulk-designed Carbone restaurant in Las Vegas. The so-called Blue Room features flooring inspired by Vegas’s iconic Sands pool from the 1960s.

Fulk the author
The cover of Mr. Ken Fulk’s Magical World, an oversize glimpse into the interiors, bashes, and travels of the San Francisco–based designer, out October 18 from Abrams Books.


Originally published in the October issue of
San Francisco

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