The Design Questionnaire with Kate Lester Interiors

Kitchen with dark cabinets and white walls Kate Lester Interiors

In this edition of Love Happens’ Proust-style Design Questionnaire, join us for a peek inside the creative design mind of Kate Lester, founder of the Los Angeles-based design firm Kate Lester Interiors. For over 15 years, Kate has been creating luxurious residential and commercial interior designs for clientele including professional athletes, entertainment industry insiders, and Hollywood elite.

Read on to learn more about Kate Lester and her eponymous firm!

Kate Lester Interiors
Kate Lester

Inside Kate Lester Interiors

Drawing inspiration from classic architecture, design greats, and her own clients’ passions, Kate Lester Interiors aims to create spaces that are carefully crafted, thoughtfully curated, and the embodiment of livable luxury.

california chic living room and dining room Design by Kate Lester Interiors, Photo by Amy Bartlam
Design by Kate Lester Interiors. Photo by Amy Bartlam.

With a diversely talented design team in her studio and now a home store in Hermosa Beach, Kate is spreading her vision of livable luxury and carefully curated interiors with the masses. Known for her magnetic, vivacious personality and relatability, Kate is also an expert at balancing motherhood fun with the ultimate work/life balance. Cheers to mom power!

A Peek Inside the Fabulous and Inspiring Mind of Kate Lester with the Lh Design Questionnaire

kate lester interiors
Kate Lester

What is your idea of perfect happiness?

I have always said that happiness is an “inside job”. If you are not happy in your studio apartment, you may never be happy in a mansion. It’s all about living in the present and finding small moments of joy every single day. Maybe it’s that first sip of delicious morning coffee, or how strong and empowered you feel after a workout. Find those moments and cherish them. Being happy is a mindset. I choose happiness every day.

What is your greatest extravagance?

AhhhIt’s for sure my Cartier bracelets. Aside from my engagement/wedding rings, these are the pieces that mean the most to me. Each represents a milestone in my career and I cherish them and use them as a reminder every day to keep pushing forward.

What do you consider your greatest achievement?

Besides creating another human inside me? Probably the fact that I went against everyone’s adviceleft my cushy job in corporate America to follow my dream, and after a TON of blood sweat, and tearsI built a brand I am really proud of. I think sometimes you just have to listen to your gut and do what’s right for YOU. I wanted to create a job that I would look forward to doing every day. You only get one life and I wanted to make sure I spent every day of that life building something I would be proud of.

You & Yours Distilling Co., bar San Diego, CA. Photo by Lindsey Stucky.
You & Yours Distilling Co., San Diego, CA. Design by Kate Lester Interiors. Photo by Lindsey Stucky.

What profession does your alter ego have?

I am an attorney for sure.

The project you will never forget.

Probably our Agnes St. build. Our client was not only my dermatologist but also a friend and really trusted the process. She gave us the brief that she wanted her home “ to be radand not look like anyone else’s.” THAT is a designer’s dreamand we made it happen.

foyer Design by Kate Lester Interiors. Photo by Amy Bartlam.
Design by Kate Lester Interiors. Photo by Amy Bartlam.
kitchen Design with dark cabinets by Kate Lester Interiors. Photo by Amy Bartlam.
Design by Kate Lester Interiors. Photo by Amy Bartlam.
bathroom Design with purple vanity by Kate Lester Interiors. Photo by Amy Bartlam.
Design by Kate Lester Interiors. Photo by Amy Bartlam.

Your favorite business tool or resource.

Instagram! I am in the business of pretty pictures, so obviously this is the perfect platform for me. But not only does it let me showcase my work- it provides an opportunity for me to get to know, and interact with my audience, and give them a glimpse of my reality. I share images of my family, my accomplishments, and also my struggles, and I think that resonates with people- someone being successful, but also real, on social media.

The most timeless design.

I think the formula for timeless design is curation. When a room feels collected, curated, and full of personality, it is timeless. It is a direct reflection of the people who live thereand that never goes out of style. 

a comfortable masculine bedroom design Photo by Amy Bartlam.
Design by Kate Lester Interiors. Photo by Amy Bartlam.

The biggest design faux pas.

I could write a novel about this, but for me, it’s generic art. People don’t need bad dentist office art in their homes, they need pieces that speak to them and inspire them. Frame a favorite scarf, a drawing your child did that you are most proud of, or hang a piece that’s been in the family for ages. I would much rather see any of that than something that belongs in a hospital waiting room. Get creative and own it. Decorate with what makes you happy.

Your motto.

“What’s our one weird thing?” I don’t know if that’s a mottobut it’s what I say to my team every time we design a space. What makes this space unique? What makes it different/special? Every space should have at LEAST one. I would much rather someone leave a space I designed saying something about it (GOOD OR BAD!) because that means it resonated with themand to me, that is better than it being so boring or generic that it was forgettable. Make it memorable and own it.

california chic foyer with a statement cabinet and iron railing and light wood floors
Design by Kate Lester Interiors. Photo by Amy Bartlam.

Love happens when…

You are kind to yourself. Watch what you say when you talk to yourself in the mirror. Keep a positive internal dialogue. Give yourself a break and work on self-love. When you love yourself, you can be so much more open to love others. When you are full of love, you will attract love, and what is better than that?!

Explore more of Kate Lester Interiors’ beautiful work at

By Anna Beck Bimba