Katherine Pooley

Katharine Pooley

Award-winning interior designer taking British values global

Katharine Pooley, founder of her eponymous interior design studio – recently named International Interior Designer of the Decade at the International Design & Architecture (IDAA) Awards, as well as 2019’s Most Influential Designer in Asia by ACG Media Group – has projects completing all over the world. Her most constant challenge? ‘It has to be time and distance,’ she says. ‘Working across different time zones and regions and also fitting in precious time with my two young sons. I never seem to have enough of it.’


Pooley’s business – encompassing architectural design, interior design, product design and property development – is thriving. Three years ago KPL took over a new studio space in Knightsbridge to accommodate her ever growing team, which has a fabulous, double-height internal library, flooded with light and with room for Pooley’s team of 47 designers and interior architects to stretch out and flex their creative muscles. ‘I feel that this year will be an amazing time for design development and really pushing forward with new ideas, be they architectural or around furniture, fabrics or accessories,’ she says. ‘I can’t wait to give all the thoughts floating around in my mind a dedicated space to breathe and see where they take us.’


Pooley is renowned for being hands-on with all the business’s high-end residential and commercial clients, and she expects her team of experienced designers to produce solutions rather than problems. Delegating part of the decision-making, she says, helps to ensure the design studio works proactively and efficiently. ‘The strength of my team is something I am most proud of. As my father often says, “If you want to go fast, go alone; if you want to go far, go together.”’

Some of Katharine’s clients have been with her for over a decade, moving through multiple properties and locations as their families grow

Katherine Pooley

A prolific traveller, Pooley is well qualified to comment on the merits of ‘Britishness’ in comparison to what she finds abroad. ‘What we create in Britain, our history of craftsmanship, artistic merit and flair for unique and original design, is unsurpassed internationally. The British can err too much on the side of modesty but, in my experience, we create some of the most interesting, exceptional and generally ground-breaking designs in our workshops, ateliers and design studios. We should be so proud! It is one of the main reasons our clients love to work with designers, makers and suppliers from this country.’


Katharine Pooley began her career working in finance, later switching direction to create an interior design business that spoke more to the creative and expressive side of her personality. Some of her clients have been with her for over a decade, moving through multiple properties and locations as their families grow and their living requirements change. She considers it a privilege to be invited to attend weddings, christenings and other important events in their lives. ‘These very private individuals entrust me with their hopes and dreams, and I work hard to ensure they are not disappointed. From this foundation many beautiful friendships have sprung. Working in design is such a pleasure: it is intimate, emotional and very personal.’