Designer Profile: Kimberley Harrison

Designer Profile: Kimberley Harrison

After over a decade working in tech, Kimberley left her position at a fast-paced start-up eager to unite her business background and passion for inspired design. She started her own firm, Kimberley Harrison Interiors, and just a year later was chosen to participate in the Traditional Home Napa Showhouse.

Kimberley Harrison Interiors is a full-service interior design firm that specializes in residential and boutique commercial projects in the San Francisco Bay Area and throughout the United States. Known for designing homes that are warm and approachable, sophisticated and functional, her interiors are artfully layered spaces infused with a refined, eclectic beauty rooted in timelessness.

We often see our wallpapers specified by Kimberley Harrison Interiors, so we took the opportunity to talk to Kimberley about her business, design process and some of her recent projects.


How long have you been in business?
8 years

How would you describe your design aesthetic?
My favorite design aesthetic can be defined as minimal with a masculine edge which I often juxtapose with texture to bring warmth and softness to our modern and bold designs.

Orinda Project  (Photo - Kathryn MacDonald)

Can you describe your design development process?
At KHI, we begin with a deep dive to understand our client’s goals by looking closely at how they live, what they love, what matters most to them and the general design aesthetic they identify with and then we move into creation mode.

What inspires your ideas for each project?
I draw my inspiration from many sources, but mainly through getting to know my clients. I like to believe that I do a good job of understanding who our clients are and creating spaces that speak to them and how they live. It's about them, not us.

I also love to find unique pieces that I think will speak to the client, so that they feel heard and are receiving a design that is unique to them.

Moraga Project  (Photo - Kathryn MacDonald)

What are the values or ethos that drive your work?
I believe in sharing ideas and resources. In my opinion, it's most important to raise others up and celebrate one another’s successes! I feel that it is very important to support and mentor other men and women in the business and I appreciate it being reciprocated.

Tell us about a recent project that you are proud of. What was your vision for the space?
In addition to our full client load, KHI moved our studio to Lafayette, CA in 2022. We took over space that used to house an old restaurant and we completely gutted it! My vision was light & bright with bold accents and to create an energetically happy place for my team to work.

Tell us about the pieces that you have chosen and/or created for the space?
I selected very light bleached flooring, painted all the walls a crisp white to showcase art and added a touch of the eclectic, i.e., a very large floor-to-ceiling sized wooden frame from the 17th century that I found in Paris.

We love seeing Emma Hayes wallpapers being specified in your projects. Could you tell us what your favorite Emma Hayes design is and why?
One of our most memorable Emma Hayes features is in our client’s game room. This room was created with adult fun in mind. The expansive wall behind the custom-made shuffleboard needed something impactful and rather than purchase artwork, we chose the Sediment wallcovering in mural format, designed by Emma Hayes Textiles. Using the full wall as a canvas elevates this Game Room and brings just the right amount of drama and color to this ultimate hangout space.

Danville Project  (Photo - Kathryn MacDonald)

What are you working on at the moment (that you can tell us about!)?
Our favorite project right now is creating complete room designs in what is currently a big, white box. Transforming the spaces is especially fun when our clients trust our vision. Our favorite room in the house is the “moody martini” room. More to come on that later.

We love sharing our passion for design and recently launched our retail via in-studio pop-ups – a collection of unique home decor pieces handpicked by me and my team to help bring your spaces to life. Our plan is to host regularly scheduled pop ups each month.

You are based in San Francisco, where should we eat / drink / do when we visit?
There’s so much to do in the San Francisco Bay Area! Two of my all-time favorite restaurants are Spruce and Boulevard. I still love the bar at Bix for a cold glass of champagne or an icy cold martini and Balboa for a burger.

My favorite dive bar from my younger days is Horseshoe Tavern in the Marina. Buena Vista really does make the best Irish coffees and Brazen Head has a lot of nostalgia from years ago! There are so many great new and old restaurants in SF that it’s hard to pick!

One thing that hasn’t changed over the years is my love of shopping at Gump’s for Christmas ornaments – it’s a 30+ year tradition that I look forward to each season!