Vintage F-150 Helps Launch Former TV Star’s Design Business

Sean T. Johnston

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When it comes to design, Kim Lewis knows a thing or two. That’s why she led the team that planned the renovations of over 120 homes during her six-year tenure on the megahit TV show Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. That’s also why you can see her cruising around Texas in a vintage 1977 Ford F-150.


The blue-and-white truck she affectionately calls Pearl is the perfect calling card for the talented designer as she works to build a new business in her hometown of Austin. Kim Lewis Designs creates vibrant restaurant spaces and tiny houses for clients all over the world. In fact, whenever she can, Kim uses Pearl to haul supplies to job sites and meet with clients.


As an architectural artist, Kim believes that all design should speak to the customer’s roots, as her iconic Ford F-150 speaks to hers. Growing up in Texas, Kim first learned how to drive in her grandfather’s 1978 F-150, a truck not unlike the one she currently drives. And when it came to selecting something that speaks to her design philosophy and her personality, she chose the 1977 Ford F-150.


“Pearl and I are two peas in a pod,” Kim says. “She’s exactly what I needed to start my business, and has become part of my brand. All around Texas, people know Pearl.”


Even though her new venture takes her all over the world, her heart stays pretty close to Texas. In fact, Kim recently spearheaded a complete redesign of the Dallas No. 43 Fire Station with the Dallas Cowboys, Fox Sports and Leary Firefighters Foundation.


As if that doesn’t showcase her Texas-sized heart enough, Kim is an active motivational speaker and international philanthropist. In addition to finding creative inspiration in countries like Ethiopia, Ghana and Honduras, Kim is also training and assisting women, and even launched a new accessory line to aid in that mission.


As we celebrate 40 years of F-Series being the best-selling pickup truck in America, we’re pulling together more great stories like Kim and Pearl’s. Visit 40 Years Tough to read more!

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