Throughout her decorating career, Kate balanced work with home and family, often taking the children with her on her long cross-Canada train journeys. On her buying trips for the hotels, she bought and collected for herself and the family. When she retired, she recorded her personal passion for collecting in "My Possessions," now in the McCord Museum archives. In it she details the stories, the items bought, the curious people she dealt with, and the prices paid. Among her extensive collections are samplers, mirrors, clocks, chairs, tables, ship models and much more.
In 1912 Kate designed a Norman style house and remarkable garden in St. Andrews-by-the Sea, New Brunswick, and called it Pansy Patch. She painted a little sign for the gate: "Pull the string and lift the latch. Welcome friend to Pansy Patch." Alongside this house was moved one of the earliest Loyalist cottages in St. Andrews which Kate named Cory Cottage after her mother's family name. These houses were filled with her most-loved possessions and became exemplars of the Kate Reed style.