Welcome to the launch of DESIGN SCHOOL. This monthly interview series is chance to get inside the minds of our favorite interior designers with some rapid fire questions, and take a peek into their award-winning portfolios. The series will feature designers from all over the country (and world!), I hope these tidbits of advice leave you with a new idea or two. Grab a cuppa joe and let’s pretend we’re in LA at the Beverly Hilton sitting down for this interview! Also, if you have a designer you’d love to see featured please leave me a comment with your pick.
Studio LIFE.STYLE. is the West Hollywood, CA firm of Shannon Wollack & Brittany Zwickl. Brittany and I met last March at the Design Bloggers Conference at the Traditional Home dinner, and I immediately loved her style and warm personality. Since that time, I’ve been following the firms incredible press features and love the laid-back, yet modern and edgy, California sensibility they bring to their projects. Here’s more from Principle Brittany Zwickl. All photos courtesy of Studio LIFE.STYLE.
1. The most difficult aspect of my job:
The most difficult part of our job is probably all of the coordination that goes behind making sure every single item is ordered correctly, and scheduled to arrive on time while working in conjunction with the construction schedule. There are so many important details not to be missed!
2. One of the greatest lessons I ever learned:
Consider the size of doorways and stairwells. Many years ago we designed a custom headboard that was 7′ high and hadn’t considered how we would actually get the bed into the space! The stairwell turned and the headboard was just too big to make the turn with the angle of the stairs. We ended up having to hoist the bed over the balcony and into the room that way!
3. Every room needs:
Plants and fresh cut flowers! Every room looks better with a little life.
4. My secret styling trick:
Layering different elements and textures helps give a space depth and personality. Books, art, plants, ceramics, throws, etc.
5. Good design:
Should make sense. Should be thought out and and should function. I love when spaces are not only aesthetically pleasing but accomplish exactly what they set out to accomplish.
6. My dream collaboration would include:
Something with BDDW. I’ve always been obsessed with that brand. They are just so hip, and have the most incredible products and craftsmanship.
7. My best work comes out of:
We have been so lucky to be able to collaborate with a lot of super creative clients. Each of them have their own personal style / taste which is always fun and makes every project unique.
8. My favorite part of a project is:
Seeing everything come together in the end! Install days are always nerve-racking and thrilling. Getting the professional photos back are also always a huge treat.
9. My favorite splurge:
A great piece of art or lighting that ties the room together.
10. My favorite person to follow on Instagram:
Way too hard to choose!! Some of my favorites: @ashe_leandro @studioashby @communedesign @apparatusstudio @brian.paquette.interiors
11. The quality I most hate clients to have:
Nothing! It is great to work and calibrate with different personalities and opinions.
12. The source you’d be surprised to know I use:
We source a lot of product for our online shop from different countries including India, Guatemala and Africa.
13. I always encourage clients to get rid of:
Unnecessary items and tchotchkes that add clutter.
14. My favorite houseplant:
Really into the Rubber Tree right now. I also love a good cactus!
15. My favorite room in my home:
Living room or kitchen because it is the place that people gather.
16. The pattern that I’ll never tire of is:
Stripes – they can be used in so many different ways and applications. They are timeless and can be modern or traditional.
Big thanks to Studio LIFE.STYLE for being the first interview on DESIGN SCHOOL! Can’t wait to bring you many more interviews, and dive into different styles and tastes from around the globe.
Claire’s creative energy comes from her unique perspective on the world as both a trained interior designer and a passionate yoga teacher. Her affinity for kitchen design, timeless style and eclectic decorating are shared here, along with lots of interior design education and tips. Thanks for being here, please enjoy!