Top Interior Designers: Kara Mann Design

interior designer kara mann

One of the industry’s top interior designers, Chicago and New York-based Kara Mann, is renowned for her elegant and refined, yet simultaneously edgy and fresh interiors. “I am always interested in finding both the balance and the tension between sophistication and edge, classicism and irreverence, the cutting edge and the enduring, the feminine and the masculine,” describes the Chicago native and founder and creative director of her namesake firm, Kara Mann Design.

Kara established her Chicago office in 2005, expanded to Manhattan in 2011, and today boasts an international roster of covetable residential and hospitality clients. Her ultra-chic and distinct design aesthetic is a product of her background in fashion, art and design; combined with her dramatic approach and attention to the architecture of her interiors, luxury furniture selections and her sophisticated material compositions, Kara creates spaces which are equally enduring and innovative.

“I like to take the edge off a little,” says Kara, explaining the balance that applies just as much to her personal style as her interiors. “You know, I might put on a leather jacket, but I’m going to have an accessory that softens the look.”

With a passion for fashion (we hear shoes are a favorite obsession – and if you know KOKET you know how we feel about that!), Kara often references fashion houses in her work. Additionally, Vogue appointed her as a member of The Vogue 100, a group of influential decision makers and opinion leaders known for their distinctive taste in fashion and culture.

When it comes to her love of fashion we hear Kara has a particular fondness for leather (be-still our hearts again!), a fondness which led to her collaboration with the fabulous leather house Moore & Giles in 2011. “Indulge in some leather—it’s not just for your grandfather’s recliner anymore! I have a real love for leather clothes, accessories, and furnishings. Leather is a chic and timeless material, and it strengthens a design with one more layer of textural interest,” says Kara.

Kara’s work is in leading publications including, Elle Décor, The New York Times, Traditional Home, House Beautiful, Coastal Living, Chicago Tribune and domino, to name a few, as well as multiple design books.

Shown above, Kara’s stunning design of the Talbott Hotel, an iconic Chicago boutique hotel which reopened this past June. 

In 2015, Baker Furniture enlisted Kara to interject new life into their Milling Road brand, a job she took on with resounding success! The 54-piece collection radiates Kara’s cool confidence with its bold, sleek silhouettes, metallic accents, and earthy tones. Currently, Kara continues to shine in the design world – we can’t wait to see what she comes up with next!