top of page

Imagine the Possibilities for Your Home

About Kate


Kate helps busy clients envision and complete home renovations. Whether it’s creating a gourmet kitchen, a spa-like bathroom, a beautiful deck, a new home office, or tackling a full home renovation, Kate helps clients make it happen. Kate provides guidance through the whole process, by crystallizing a clear vision and keeping track of all the details, saving time, money and stress. Kate draws full construction plans and creates 3D views of transformed spaces. Kate has built strong partnerships with the best Bay Area construction material vendors and talented local contractors who help bring the project vision to life.


Are you moving to a new home in the Half Moon Bay area? Kate will help you visualize renovations to ensure your new home meets your needs. Kate can connect you with a trustworthy contractor, a structural engineer, local services and other resources to help you get settled as quickly as possible. If you'll live remotely during construction, Kate can be on site to guide installation, prevent potential issues and solve problems as needed.

Renovation Design Services include:

  • Creating functional and attractive space

  • 3D walkthrough videos and previews of new space

  • Full construction drawings for permitting

  • Budget estimation and management

  • Lighting design and electrical plans

  • Material selection guidance for cabinets, plumbing fixtures, stone, tile, flooring, appliances, and more. Kate helps you determine how much/what size to buy from vendors, often with trade discounts (10-30%).

  • See sample project plans

Contact Kate



Send an email to set up

your home renovation design consultation



Or send a message here...

Success! Message sent. Kate will contact you as soon as possible.

Why Renovate?

A home in the Bay Area can be a great investment. Beyond the financial aspects, a home is a special place to create countless memories over the years. A home can serve as retreat, a gathering place, and sometimes also a place to work. Research has shown that when people spend more time at home, the overall feeling of that space can affect their mood. Spending extended time in dysfunctional space can cause stress and frustration.

While project goals vary, they often involve working to make a home feel more functional, more open, more light, more clean, and finding ways to take advantage of outdoor Coastal views. Thoughtful renovation investments will increase home values and potential future sale prices. After renovations are complete, clients have expressed that their home is now a great source of pride, and that they feel lower stress levels, more joy and confidence when hosting guests, and increased energy and motivation every day. 

Client References

"Consistently amazing from our first contact to completion."  --- Janine Galligani | See project

"Kate is amazing! The amount of progress we've made in such a short time is priceless. I don't know how anyone could ever do this without someone like Kate."  -- Stephanie Seul | See project

"Very responsive, easy to work with, offering a wealth of design ideas and resources to draw from, and excellent working rapport with excellent Bay Area suppliers and an outstanding contractor." -- Gian Polastri | See project

"Kate has very good design views and an excellent ability to show online 3D images of alternative designs. She is very pleasant to work with and has been very responsive when we need help, even on very short notice." -- TJ Glauthier | See project

"Kate was fantastic to work with! Organized, detailed and creative. I could not have done this project without her amazing services. Best of all, I get to come home to a home that is more beautiful than I could ever have imagined!" -- Kerri Conlon | See project

"Intelligent, creative and inspired design." -- Juliette and Duncan Arnold | See project

"Kate is a truly gifted interior designer who helped us go from envisioning a design to delivering a beautifully finished product that exceeded all our expectations. She transformed our entire home from ordinary to extraordinary! We initially hired Kate to remodel our kitchen but after meeting with her, viewing her 3D concepts, and listening to her suggestions, we asked her to redesign every room in our house.

She has outstanding expertise around space design, materials, color schemes, textures, and vendor selection. She delivered a transformational floor design and layout, giving our home a completely fresh feel and flow. Everyone who has seen our new space has commented on the “peaceful & serene” feeling, which was exactly what we hoping for.

Kate also has a great sense of style, a keen eye for detail, and is a first-rate project manager. She took care of many things we had not even considered! Not only does she play the role of designer, but she also provides completed architectural CAD drawings for the construction company and all vendors to follow. Kate ensures every detail is managed to completion.

We are extremely pleased with the service and knowledge provided by Kate and would recommend her without the slightest hesitation. We truly could not have accomplished this without her!"  -- Mey Wong | See project

"Kate designed our home remodel. We couldn’t have done it without her! We had never worked with a designer before and had no idea what to expect. In fact, we weren’t so sure we needed much help from her at all! Boy were we wrong. From our first meeting we knew we were in good hands. Kate designed our kitchen, master bath and and family room remodeling. She is professional, responsive and friendly. Kate took our words in what we wanted and gave them back to us in a gorgeous new home. She drew up the plans which were approved with no problems. Kate introduced us to her professional vendors and walked us through every decision we had to make at just the right times to keep our project moving quickly. We couldn’t recommend Kate Handel any more highly. Hiring her was our smartest decision. Every day we adore our newly remodeled house and give 100% of the credit to Kate!" -- Suzi Keenan | See project

"We recently worked with Kate on a significant remodel to our home. She worked closely with us from design through construction completion. She has a close relationship with the contractor as well as fixtures, cabinet, furniture and appliance vendors. She was ahead of the curve when ordering, so that the work wasn't seriously delayed because of supply chain disruptions. Kate listened to our needs/wishes and designed a home with which are extremely pleased!" -- Kelly Spaeth | See project

"I wanted to buy “that perfect house” but nothing suited my personal style or price point. Instead, I decided to purchase a house I could renovate and personalize. Luckily, I started working with Kate right away. 


Kate is an experienced renovation designer who helped me make my dream home a reality. Initially I thought I’d just remodel my kitchen, but as soon as I began working with her, I knew immediately I wanted to enlist her design services to update the entire interior of the house. She designed my home to become a stunning place that reflects my personal taste while keeping my budget in mind.


Kate worked side by side with me every step along the way in the design process. She’s easy to work with and leans in to her client's desires to offer creative and simple solutions to potentially complex problems.  She began by offering structure to my ideas that ultimately helped me articulate my big ideas and truly define what we could achieve. Then, we met on the job site and we visualized and discussed the possibilities together. She is an amazing listener and during this process she employed her keen sense of style with an eye for detail to preview every idea using live CAD drawings. I was blown away by her ideas and this part of the process exceeded my expectations.


Next, Kate helped me select materials, build a budget, and shared cost savings for materials selection. She has built a team of dedicated tradespeople who respect her. We met at each vendor location and she helped articulate my needs to the various vendors as we selected finishes and materials. It was a sheer delight to work with Kate on site as we selected floor, appliances, cabinets, lighting, fireplace, bathroom and kitchen fixtures together. Again, she added all the choices, live, into CAD, to help me visualize my selections. 


Kate helped with the essential final stages of renovation—actual construction. Kate prepared the set renovation plans that a general contractor can bid and work efficiently from. Ultimately these detailed plans helped me save money, define the budget, and she helped me find a talented and reliable local contractor for this project. She also produced the plans for submission for structural engineering, electrical design, and plans ready for the permit processes. 


The finished renovation project is even more wonderful than I could have imagined on my own. As the project progressed, it turned out that we touched every room in the house. Simple aesthetic suggestions such as matching paint or door hardware made a huge difference. I’m grateful for all of Kate’s thoughtful guidance and suggestions. We made these minor adjustments along the way that didn’t cost a lot but, in the end, makes the house just epic. Now that we’ve completed the project, this dreamy modern beach retreat is welcoming my friends and family."

 -- Kathleen Ferenz | See project

"When I decided to remodel my master bath, I really had no idea what I was getting into. It was just good luck that I found Kate on Nextdoor, when I was looking for reviews of local contractors. She has made a complicated project painless, and has saved me a lot of time and untold stress.

Kate brings an extraordinary skill set to her work. As a designer, she is simply amazing. She’s also a great listener, and during the planning phase I was constantly surprised by how well she "got" me and understood what I was hoping to achieve. She has a great eye for using space, and came up with ideas for my new bathroom I didn’t even imagine were possible.

On the business side, Kate is a total pro. Very detailed emails with updates on every phase of the process. Super responsive, and proactive about managing possible problems. By the time we got to shopping for tile, cabinets, and fixtures, I knew I could rely on her to help me make smart choices, while keeping costs in mind. Her contacts are knowledgeable and friendly; I learned a lot on these shopping trips!

On the search for a local contractor I mentioned at the beginning, Kate facilitated that too. She prepared me well for the process of getting the contract, billing, permits, etc. Working with Kate is a pleasure.

Highly recommend Kate! She’s the best." -- Beth Miles 

"Kate was amazing to work with as she was attentive to our design wishes and provided multiple options without the choices being overwhelming. We are enjoying both of our bathroom remodels and we are constantly complimented on everything she did for us. She also graciously helped us with multiple smaller side projects. We will definitely be using Kate Handel Design again and would highly recommend her services." --- Lynne Grant | See project

"My husband and I worked with Kate on our home remodel. We had no idea where to begin. She turned out 90's beige house into a beautiful modern farm home, with no more beige! Kate was amazing to work with. We showed her pictures of the designs/styles we liked and she took it from there. She created a 3D rendition and walk through of what the remodel would look like, which was amazing and we loved it so much that there were really no changes. Kate worked with the contractor closely with all the details. Really all we needed to do was to pick out colors, tiles, and other details, where Kate met with us at the various vendors to help us. She is a great project manager and of course brilliant designer. She is easy to work with and really understands what her clients want. Her attention to detail is meticulous, things like where electrical outlet locations (especially in the kitchen, love them all) and lighting. Just things I would never think of. If I am to go through another remodel or renovation, hands down would go with Kate again!" -- Diane Beane | See Project

"Kate is nothing short of amazing! We had been working with a different designer for a kitchen remodel but something felt "off" about the design we were moving towards but we didn't know how to fix it. The project had stalled out and we were frustrated when we met with Kate for a second opinion. Immediately it was a breath of fresh air.


We asked Kate to help us 'reimagine' our home to make it a more open, inviting space to entertain and gather as a family. She took the time to find out exactly how we used our space and how we wanted it to feel rather than simply asking us how we wanted it to look. Her focus was as much on the usability of the space as it was on the look and feel. The result was a breathtaking new design and floor plan which far surpassed our expectations. 


Throughout process she was on top of every detail, helping to keep the project within budget and on time. She walked us through all of the hundreds of decisions that go into a remodel making it easy and (dare I say) fun?  All of the contractors and vendors have all remarked how easy and enjoyable it is working with Kate. It's been wonderful to work with Kate and are looking forward to working with her again in the future." -- Amanda Evans | See project

"Kate made the process of redesigning my space easier, faster and fun. She helped me find great inspirational photos and opened my eyes to new possibilities. She understood our needs and style, and our home is transforming to be more beautiful and functional than ever.

Kate’s 3D designs allowed us to actually see our new space, which looks amazing! She saved us tons of time finding products and materials, helping me find places with great selection and helpful salespeople so I was able to narrow down options quickly. She brought samples right to my door, found other products online, applied her trade discounts to save us money, negotiated better prices for us, and ensured it all looks great together.

Kate drew fully detailed plans for construction, ensuring our contractor has everything he needs to prevent mistakes and delays. She is super organized and kept track of all project details in one place, helping us estimate what our project would cost. We are thrilled that we could work with Kate and would highly recommend her to others." -- Bettina Lunasin | See project

"I'm sure there are a lot of people out there like me.  I initially thought I wanted to remodel just my kitchen.  But to be perfectly honest,  I really wanted to remodel my kitchen, living room, bedrooms, back decks, and the front of the house.  However, the budget limits what I can do this year so I decided to focus on the kitchen.   However, I knew that eventually the other areas would need to be done and I also thought an overall design would be important so it 'holds together.'


I wondered where to start ?  Do I interview contractors first?  Do I hire a designer ?   I've never used a designer.   I had some anxiety that I wouldn't work well with a designer especially if their tastes were wildly different then mine.  Would they understand what I want even though I'm not quite sure I know what I want?  Mmm..... So many questions.  In the end,  I decided that I did in fact need a "road map" of the entire house even if I was just starting with the kitchen.  I also decided that whoever I chose to help me (designer) needed to be able to show me the design in 3D on the computer.  I have to be sure that we are aligned on a final design.  No surprises.   


Then I met Kate Handel.   The probability of her working out was high just based on her website.  Her designs really aligned with what I like and had a nice balance of beauty, function and comfort.  Fast forward to today.  I am working with Kate on a remodel of my Kitchen & Living Room which involves new flooring and windows.  I am simply blown away that after a couple in person meetings and her assigning some homework for me to tag pictures I liked of kitchens/living rooms we are very close to a final design.  I went to her house last week to see both computer drawings and a mocked up video of the final design on her computer.   I was speechless.  It was exactly what I had hoped for !  I am so excited.  What we will have by next week is a roadmap that we can hand over to a Contractor to bid on and then build.   This week we pick countertops and cabinets.  Last week I picked Flooring and Appliances. 

I'm grateful that I found Kate.  This has been fun and very cost effective.  We are making trade-offs on buying a few expensive items but them offsetting that with non expensive options." -- Stephanie Roberts | See project


"From the very first email, Kate Handel was prompt, positive and fun to work with. She worked with my husband and I to narrow down our likes and dislikes for a big master bath remodel.  Using her computer skills and media sites i.e. Houzz and Pinterest, Kate helped us bring out our style. She was upfront with what she would provide and her costs. Not all interior designers are like this! Visits to the vendors were helpful.  Interior designer trade discounts were appreciated.  We have detailed drawings and photos/video to give contractors.  I am looking forward to working with her again...maybe the master bedroom is next! I highly recommend her."  -- Debbie and Max Bunuan | See project

Kate is the third designer I've worked with and the third time is certainly the charm! I worked with Kate on a major kitchen/dining remodel.

First, Kate excels as a designer. I found her to be organized and detail-oriented and to listen to my ideas and desires while continually making suggestions in a non-pushy way. The most important suggestion she made was for us to take out a (non-load-bearing) wall and reverse our kitchen/dining layout. This resulted in a fabulous space, but I never felt like her vision was imposed on us, but rather she helped to make ours real.

Secondly, working with Kate you get some project management type help along with the design. Kate lined up a structural engineer to look at the wall we were taking out and to write a letter to go in with the drawings for the permit. She worked with our contractor and cabinet maker to ensure that the final result was true to our vision. I've done quite a few remodeling projects, including a previous major kitchen/dining remodel and this was just a wonderful bonus.

Finally (and what drew me to interview her initially), she uses a program that can render 3D from drawings. Further, she uses the program to print out drawings that are used to get the permit and used by the contractor. This was a much smoother process than our previous large remodel which involved an architect doing the drawings (and not really being worth it). -- Kathie Nichols | See project

bottom of page