San Diego Home/Garden Lifestyle Magazine

Before & After: Pops of Color Enliven a Living Room

March 2018

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San Diego Home/Garden Lifestyles Magazine

Before & After

December 2016


“We wanted something that created visual impact and drew the eye from the living room to the dining room,” Kathy says. “Our client was open to almost anything, but this bold decision took convincing.”

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San Diego Union Tribune

Coastal San Diego Homes

November 2016


Sometimes, you can break the rules in design and get the perfect result. When Alicia Mendoza asked designer Kathy Ann Abell for a glamorous new design without touching the leopard-print carpet in her living room, Abell saw a chance to have some fun.

Mendoza has lived in her four-bedroom, 3.5-bathroom Sunset Cliffs home since 1990, raising two daughters there with her husband, Jose. After he passed away and her daughters started raising their own families, Mendoza’s priorities shifted, and she was ready for a complete makeover of the 3,000-square-foot space.

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San Diego Home/Garden Lifestyles Magazine

Before & After

July 2016


“Other than the carpet, my client was happy to start from scratch,” Kathy says. “She wanted to completely redo the room, but loved animal print. To make the carpet feel intentional, we upholstered a traditional Bergere chair in a Ralph Lauren zebra print—the ultimate in eclectic style.”

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San Diego Home/Garden Lifestyles Magazine

34th Annual Homes of the Year Winner

January 2013

…this home has been judged a winner” by the Homes of the Year Jury. Kathy was privileged to take part in the design of one of four homes that won the Homes of the Year in San Diego County.

The home rests on top of Mount Helix. It is owned by wonderful clients, Susan and Lawrence McIntosh. Photos of this home are found in the galleries section of this website.

An excerpt from the magazine reads, “Interior Designer Kathy Abell of Designed Interiors worked with homeowner Susan McIntosh to complement the strong features of the architecture. Abell incorporated an inviting custom curved sofa mirroring the curves of the pool, and upholstered ottomans and chairs to soften the linear lines.” “One of my highest priorities in design is to create spaces where conversation and time with family and friends flows easily,” says Abell.

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Shore Decor

Design at the Water’s Edge

March 2011

By E. Ashley Rooney/Published by Schiffer Books

Ms. Rooney has written many beautiful coffee table books in the past. Architectural books, such as, “Castles to Cottages”, “Old Barns-New Homes”, and “Cliffhangers & Hillside Houses”. We were thrilled when she approached us in 2010, asking to include some of Kathy Ann Abell Interior’s nautical projects. Shore Decor is full of wonderful photographs of homes at the water’s edge. We are proud to be a part of it!

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San Diego Home/Garden Lifestyles Magazine

Before & After

July 2009


If you live near the ocean, it’s nice if your home reflects that ambiance—at least that’s how interior designer Kathy Abell’s clients felt about their Pacific Beach residence. “The homeowners wanted a fresh new look with a nautical, beach feel,” says Abell…”Choosing navy, sand and white as the color palette for the living/dining area dramatically enlivened the space”…Adding accessories such as seashells and rowing oars, brought in a dash of whimsy…With clever space planning the homeowners also gained a cozy seating nook by a light-filled window—perfect for daytime reading."

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Better Homes and Gardens

Kitchen and Bath Ideas Magazine

March/April 2009


Blessed with a foundation of amenities worth keeping, a modest size seaside kitchen in Del Mar, California, practically provided the blueprint for it’s own remodel…In addition to the layout and footprint, we kept the appliances in their original places because they were placed efficiently,” says interior designer Kathy Abell, who worked on the project with colleague Terese Moser. “We just needed to update the space”…The designers offset all the white in the kitchen with the rich tones of mahogany woodwork in the adjacent eating area. The striking color contrast between the two spaces gives each its own character, yet there is continuity, too. Abell added new mahogany flooring in both areas and topped the kitchen island with lyptus, an ecologically-friendly hardwood that resembles mahogany…

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Better Homes and Gardens

How to Dress Down a Room

Winter 2009