As a part of this year's Fall Market Series at Pacific Design Center, I participated in an exciting discussion with fellow designers at the Kravet showroom! The topic: DESIGNING FOR MILLENNIALS
I think this generation of designers and dreamers are reshaping our field, fueled by a sense of creative freedom and embracing the endless possibilities! Here, I'm giving a full rundown of my responses to the panel questions.
What’s your number one piece of advice when it comes to work with/designing for millennials?
Have a strong social media presence and tools as this is how millenials are accessing information and inspiration from.
What differences do you notice in their décor style in comparison to older generations? I see the following difference:
PINK! There is a willingness to mix and match hardware and fabrics/patterns whereas the older generations tend to want everything to match.
What challenges do you face when working with/designing for millennials?
Information is at their fingertips so there is a constant influx of ideas and often, I have to keep them focused and streamlined. They can also price things out faster than we can, so being transparent is key.
Have you encountered similar challenges with other age groups?
It depends on the person and the age group, but yes!
Does social media play a role in working with/designing for millennials? ABSOLUTELY!
Is designing an “Instagrammable” spot/corner a must?
Duh…J In Jessi Malay’s closet, this fact literally drove the design. We created a staging area across from her vanity so it woud be in every shot and video she did.
What do you love about working with/designing for a younger generation?
I love the open mindedness and the thinking outside of the box aspect. They don’t know the rules and it can be fun that way, too!
Are there any recurring millennial design trends that surprise you?
The marble trend! Millenials are all about the marble—be it clothing, home décor, etc., which is surprising given that maybe 20 years ago, people saw marble as older/gaudy.
Are textures and patterns trending with millennials? In what ways?
I am seeing a lot of geometric patterns, florals, colors and textures. Fashion also plays a part and I see that influencing design and design choices.
The closet, in the past was rarley featured and now an organized aethetically pleasing closet is a priority --- what do you think has contributing to this shift?
Where do I start?! When I started LA Closet Design in 2007, the impetus was seeing ktichens as great spaces (heart of the home) and wanting closets to be treated in the same way—as legitimate spaces that people can dress in, as well as hang out in—multi-functional spaces. It’s become a lifestyle space and thanks to social media, we’ve been able to show what you can do practically and aspirationally.
10 WEEKEND WARDROBE TRANSFORMATIONS
Recently, I teamed up with Partners' Trust to offer their readers 10 simple weekend wardrobe transformations! These are tips to streamline a closet on any budget, and can make a drastic impact in a small space, without the investment or time of a full closet overhaul
Check out my tips below, and see more over on the Partners Trust blog!
1. Install a towel bar to create a staging area where you can display pieces when assembling new looks or packing for a trip. This set-up works especially well for bloggers and avid instagrammers.
2. Install undermount hooks to hang larger tote bags and insert purse pillows inside of each one to help maintain their shape.
3. Use an extendable shower curtain rod in a cabinet to hang boots with boot trees. This will help keep taller boots organized while extending their life.
4. Create a hanging jewelry panel by lining a wall or panel in your closet with felt or fabric, and installing hooks to hang your longer pieces.
5. Add vinyl dry cleaning bags within your existing hamper to create separate sections for laundry, dry cleaning, and items to purge/donate.
6. Replace conventional hanging rods with battery-operated LED hanging rods to create a more boutique experience—as well as make the items in your closet more visible!
7. Create a purse changing station by organizing a drawer with compartments for pens, wallets, gum, and lip gloss to make the changing process easier. For a real overhaul, run a power strip into the back of the drawer so you can charge your electronics while keeping them tucked away out of sight.
8. Remove any odd hangers and/or change out all your hangers to be the same style and material—this is an easy upgrade that will instantly take your closet from drab to fab!
9. In a smaller space, use gallery ledges to store/display sunglasses, clutches and other small accessories. This will allow for easy access to your favorite pieces, without having them get lost in a deep drawer.
10. Create a 3-way mirror by installing wall mirrors on a hinge. You can incorporate a hinge on the back of any basic wall mirror, and instantly create a custom dressing space.
Cable-knit / Cashmere / Crewnecks / Cardigans
It may be warm in LA, but I definitely have fall fashion on the brain. Sweaters are one of my favorite seasonal pleasures. Chunky cable-knits, cashmere, crewnecks, cardigans...I love them all!
Here are a few catching my eye right now:
I’ve been wearing a lot neutrals lately, so it’s no surprise I have heart eyes for this chic camel-colored cardigan. Less formal and structured than a coat, this statement-making sweater’s playful pompoms along the sleeves add a bit of personality.
Chunky cream knits are always so nostalgic to me, as if I should be sipping hot coco in an Alpine ski lodge. This one, made from super soft Alpaca yarn, has a darling popcorn cableknit motif and looks as cozy as it does cool.
PRO-TIP: Invest in the right hangers for your cold-weather wardrobe! Larger outerwear pieces and delicate knits require proper care, even when hanging in your closet.
Sweater hangers will protect against stretching, slipping, and snags, while coat hangers provide adequate shoulder support for your heavier garments, helping to maintain their shape.
See shoplaclosetdesign.com for more!
This wool knit is puffed-sleeve perfection! Great for tucking into high-waisted pants or skirts, I can see this sweater being a staple in my fall wardrobe.
Mustard is hot this season and this sweater is a fun way to spice up your fall look. In addition to the color, I’m loving the dramatic balloon sleeves and open back, which make it a great date night option. Plus, it has a price tag that won’t give you chills.
400 N RODEO DRIVE
SEPTEMBER 28, 2017
COCO CRUSH COLLECTION SHOWING
Sometimes the smallest clients present the biggest opportunity for creating a unique space!
I’m very lucky and honored that many of my adult clients ask me to help them create equally stylish and streamlined spaces for their kids. Children’s closets present a fun challenge that allow me to really think about how the space can grow and evolve as the child does. When designing for a little one, I consider storage and organization for a newborn’s nursery (check out the space I designed for Ali Fedotowsky’s baby girl!), hanging space for a toddler’s dress up duds and easy aesthetic upgrades for youth.
I recently shared some of my favorite tips and creative ways to develop a space that can grow with a child with Mansion Global and thought I’d share with you all, too.
Opt for a Neutral Color Palette
As much as you might want to deck out your child’s space in their favorite colors and patterns, remember their style, hobbies and interests will be ever-changing throughout their youth. I fully believe in letting your child discover his/her personal style by creating a space they can grow into, and decorating with more playful accessories along the way. Changing light fixtures, paint colors, and decorative hardware are less extensive and costly upgrades that will go a long way in keeping the space fresh. Empower your children by letting them be a part of these decisions, whether it’s in selecting new pieces or giving a much-needed facelift to existing furniture.
A Flexible Layout is Key
As children grow, they understandably want to experiment with their room’s layout. I believe the closet should be just as flexible as the rest of the space. Do you ever see children in adult-height closets and wonder why they aren’t putting back their things? Well, no surprise...they can’t reach or don't know where items should go. It’s essential that everything -- from hang rods to shelves to storage -- can be adjusted accordingly!
Make Storage Modular
I love to incorporate floating shelves in a closet and on the walls around the room to provide plenty of storage space and because they can easily be moved around. They give a custom touch and are also super functional, timeless and stylish. I also like to incorporate mirror-mounted rods and hooks for a playful storage option that also makes the space feel bigger. Cabinets for hanging jewelry and accessories allow kids to see what they have and don’t take up much room!
Plan for Growth
A kid’s closet should be designed with the idea that their height is going to change...constantly! So, I recommend that the hanging heights of garments, shoe shelf heights and hampers should all be easily accessible for the child. Not only will this make it easier for a child to put away his/her own belongings; it will encourage him/her to assemble looks and channel his/her individual creative spirit. Also, it’s important to note that if your child is able to dress himself/herself, then he/she can also get acquainted with the process of caring for clothes.
Repurpose Nursery Pieces
I’m an advocate for repurposing furniture and a child’s room is a great place to experiment. Changing tables are especially versatile and can be repainted and refinished with updated decorative hardware, creating a refreshed bureau and landing space in the room. If you don’t need the drawers, these can easily be swapped for shelves, providing additional storage for books and accessories as storage needs change. Most importantly, have fun with it!
Red Carpet Showstoppers
At last night's Emmy Awards, the princesses of primetime stepped up their style game! Here are my picks for the best-dressed TV darlings!
Evan Rachel Wood stepped out in a stunning white 3-piece suit, with a winning look that just goes to show white has no season!
Never missing a classic moment, Jane Fonda had us thinking pink with a long-sleeved solid dress and train!
A 2017 newcomer, Tara Shahidi should not be overlooked in this nude tulle Prada number, complete with green, goddess-like embellishments.
Always a favorite, Viola Davis never shies away from color! This orange gown by Zac Posen is pre-fall perfection!
Film-star Nicole Kidman is not only taking making a primetime presence, but stole the show in her red Calvin Klein classic. Giving us old-Hollywood glam, she keeps the look fresh and fun with a pink satin heel!
TEAMING UP WITH CELEBRITY DESIGNER MICHAEL COSTELLO, I GET A BEHIND-THE-SCENES LOOK AT THE WORLD OF NYFW! I'M GOING BACKSTAGE TO PREP THE DRESSING SPACES, EASING THE DRESSING PROCESS, AND CREATING A VIP LOUNGE FOR THE FASHION WEEK PRESENTATION.Read More
Prepare for fall fashion with a closet purge!
In preparation for NYFW and the forthcoming fall fashion season I recently spent a weekend doing one of my favorite activities -- purging my closet to make room for all the new trends. As I went through my clothes I thought about the questions I ask my clients when I help them clean out their closets: Have you worn it in the past year? Does it fit? Is it a trend piece that won’t be back in style anytime soon? And, ultimately I ended up with a big donation pile and some fresh closet space for fall finds.
If you’re feeling the desire to ditch some duds, a good place to start is getting rid of trendy items that are “out” and styles that aren’t current. If you’re wondering what trends are barely hanging by a thread, a few that come to mind are: skin tight denim or “jeggings,” fringe handbags, peacoats, holed tee shirts and peep-toe pumps. Though prints and patterns always have a place in fashion, I’ve found myself moving away from certain versions and towards cleaner modern looks, so purged several pattern pieces for that reason. Check out the photos for proof of my purge! For a full rundown of my purging tips, check out my closet purge with Maria Menounos!
Is your style written in the stars?
Who else has noticed a series of celestial occurrences lately? The recent solar eclipse, mercury in retrograde (September 5th can’t come soon enough!), and an astronomical amount of trendy star and moon motifs on apparel and accessories, I’m feeling the galactic force is in full effect.
With all of this celestial energy, I thought it would be fun to see how zodiac signs play a role in our design decisions and personal style. Read on for my professional recommendations about what one essential item you should have in your closet based on your zodiac traits. And, if you haven’t yet taken the CLOSETPHILE Quiz, that will also help you better understand the connection between your pesonality and your closet.
You appreciate functionality and a defined system, so ensuring your spaces are well-organized is essential to you.
*Closet necessity: Clothing filers are going to change your life. Use these to fold clothes neatly and retrieve items effortlessly. Bonus: they make your drawers look super organized!
You design interior spaces for comfort first and foremost. You also like using natural materials that bring the outside in to create a relaxing and inviting atmosphere.
*Closet necessity: Bring in a living orchid, house plant or succulents to give your closet a sophisticated sense of nature.
As a social butterfly, you want your closet to be a gathering place where you can hang with your besties and prep for a fun night out.
*Closet necessity: If you have the space and are willing to splurge a little, I recommend a mini-fridge stocked with bubbly so you’re ready to entertain your friends at the drop of a hat (or, when mercury is in retrograde and everything feels askew!).
You’re a homebody so you want your dwelling to feel like a cozy retreat that centers on family and the things you hold closest to your heart.
*Closet necessity: Decorate a wall with framed photos of your close family and friends. Don’t have a ton of space? Put picture frames with photos of your loved one on a counter or shelf near your closet.
Leos. Love. Luxury. You appreciate exclusive brands and elevated style, often achieved through ornate accents and accessories.
*Closet necessity: Add a lavish accent like a gold frame mirror or invest in a Hermés Kelly Purse Shaper Pillow (or, if you’re not Kris Jenner and still working on your Hermés collection, purse pillows will help keep the structure in your designer bags).
As a Virgo, you appreciate practicality and tidiness, and go to great lengths to ensure your spaces are always clean.
*Closet necessity: Invest in a chic laundry hamper to keep your dirty laundry under wraps. I love the X-Frame from Simplehuman.Libra -- You appreciate an aesthetic that celebrates balance and synergy in your spaces and decorate to ensure there’s always a sense of harmony.
*Closet necessity: Three words: slimline velvet hangers. Nothing will please you more than when you look at your closet and see your clothes dangling from uniform hangers.
As a Scorpio you value privacy and your home is your secluded refuge. You like to conceal some of your most secret possessions.
*Closet necessity: Lingerie sachets may seem antiquated, but they’re one of life’s small indulgences. Give ‘em a try. Your secret’s safe with me.
You’re a visionary who is always thinking about what’s next and have strong visual-spacial skills. Though you tend to collect treasures and tokens from various travels and experiences, you understand how to work them into your spaces without creating clutter.
*Closet necessity: I suggest clear acrylic shelf dividers. Whether you use them to separate handbags or sweaters, or to neatly sort items you want to put on display, they blend seamlessly within a space and are quite durable.
You enjoy tradition and you like your spaces to reflect that with items like family antiques and sentimental artifacts.
*Closet necessity: If you’re someone who holds onto old letters you sent your high school best friend, photos of ex-boyfriends and ticket stubs from your favorite concerts, you need a stylish place to put it all. The LA Leather Box is large, but unobtrusive and won’t affect your space’s aesthetic.
You’re a rule breaker and that’s often showcased through eclectic interiors. You aren’t afraid to mix patterns and prints or do something unexpected or unorthodox.
*Closet necessity: Replace your closet door with a cheerful curtain or piece of textured fabric to satisfy your whimsical design desires.
A color that defines a generation provides endless design inspiration!
Chances are you’ve seen a proliferation of pink -- more specifically millennial pink -- on your Instagram feed, in stores and virtually at every turn. Millennial pink has officially permeated our lives -- from popular restaurants like Sketch in London to product packaging like that of Glossier and fashion brands like Rihanna’s Fenty x Puma Spring/Summer ‘17 collection. Even The Beverly Hills Hotel’s newest installation, Marc Ange’s Le Refuge, sports the shade.
Who would have guessed that a color could resonate so strongly with an entire generation? Though there’s some varying opinions about its exact shade, I think blush-toned pink is the most widely accepted version. And, in my opinion, the most aesthetically pleasing. Love it but not sure how to integrate the hot hue into your home and closet? Here are a few options:
Perhaps the simplest and most affordable way to bring millennial pink into your space is with a subtle accent piece. Try a candle, vase, planter, tray, throw or pillow to achieve that perfect pop of pink!
Fashion & Accessory Displays
Want to give your closet a color boost with millennial pink? Put your favorite fashion finds in the shade on display! There are so many ways to sport the hue this season, you can be sure to find a piece you will love for years to come.
If you’re prepared to make a bold statement try a millennial pink sheepskin rug. Want to make an even bigger impact? Install carpet...just make sure you love the color!
Inserts and Dividers
If you want to test millennial pink before committing, I suggest adding a hint of the trendy hue with drawer inserts or dividers that can separate items like undergarments, socks and tee shirts. If you smile every time you open your drawer, you’ll know you’re ready to take the pink plunge!
For the risk-averse, opt to paint a room, or just a single wall, to bring millennial pink into a space. Elle Decor spotlighted some of the best paint options out there. Feel like making a bigger commitment to the color? I recommend a playful printed wallpaper like these from Spoonflower.
Dress for Success Fuses Fashion with Female Empowerment
About 10 years ago I became involved with Dress for Success (DFS), an organization that merges fashion with philanthropy, and it has consistently brought me inspiration and fulfillment over the years. If you’re not familiar, DFS empowers women to achieve economic independence by providing a network of support, professional attire and the development tools to help them thrive in work and in life.
In 2009 I created a functional and aesthetically appealing closet in the DFS West headquarters in Los Angeles to give their clients a safe and comfortable space to find and try on workwear. For several years, I have served as designer for the organization's LA Pop-Up shop! Being able to give back, by doing what I love seemed like such a perfect fit, and allowed me to really increase involvement in the organization. Today, I continue to be heavily involved in the organization as an Advisory Council member.
I’m currently gearing up for the DFS's annual Power Walk on August 26, and I invite you to lace up your Nikes and join my team or make a donation to support the very deserving cause. Fitness is already so inherent to my own lifestyle, making this event one of my favorite ways to show support for DFS. The international 5K event serves as a walking testament to the need for success-driven women to become healthy in all aspects of their lives. Each of the walk’s three miles represents one of the three phases that DFS clients experience on their journey to self-sufficiency—from being unemployed and searching, to recently employed and adjusting, to gainfully employed and succeeding. This year’s theme is Unleashing the Power Within and I’m excited to join women warriors to unleash the power to make positive, rewarding healthy changes in life.
If you’re interested in getting involved in an organization that aligns with your interests, DFS is a great, meaningful charity that fuses fashion with female empowerment. Visit the DFS website for more information about the Power Walk and organization.
I'm so excited to share a behind-the-scenes look at the dream dressing space we designed for dream client and style icon, Jessi Malay!
I love what I do, and having good clients makes all the difference! When you're working with someone as great as Jessi, it's easy to find inspiration! Be it her personal aesthetic, the style of her home, or the pieces in her wardrobe, the style inspo is endless!
In designing for Jessi, I loved working closely with her, to understand how she would be using the space, and how best to inject her personality! With a neutral palette and moments of high-gloss glam, we were able to seamlessly combine off-the-shelf pieces with custom installations to create a swoon-worthy dressing space for all of her styling and vlogging needs!
BRING HOME SUMMER'S BEST SCENTS WITH THESE FRAGRANT CANDLES
What fragrances remind you of summer? When I think of summer scents I channel aromas of suntan lotion, salt water, fresh cut grass, jasmine, and citrus. In honor of the sunny season I’ve rounded up my favorite warm-weather candles. A mix of old classics and new favorites, these transport me to sunshine no matter the month.
Not only do I love the black and white packaging on this candle, I adore its scent. Round fragrances of jasmine, iris, lemon and lime trees, sea salt and fresh-cut grass transport me right to Florida’s fragrant paradise.
This candle perfectly captures the essence of summer, featuring a fresh, grassy scent mixed with florals, citrus, cinnamon, ginger, clove, cedar and spruce. And, the agate coaster that’s included could not be chicer!
This candle may look simple, but it’s precisely blended to smell like the ocean. It combines light green marine and sea moss with the fresh perfumes of cyclamen and lavender, and is finished with touches of earthy wild sage and citrus-y petitgrain.
Want to be transported to a tropical locale without the sunburn? Burning this candle is like taking a trip to the beach, blending notes of suntan lotion and coconuts, and ending up with the best sun-free tan ever.
We wanted to give Jessi the ultimate glam room to showcase her personal style!
I’ve so enjoyed working with Jessi and executing her vision for a stylish space that suits her needs. As one of the most notable bloggers in the biz, we wanted to give her the ultimate glam room that reflects her style and aligns with her aesthetic. That meant creating a chic and modern space, integrating a white foundation with pastel pops and silver accents. While we aimed to ensure the space seamlessly works with the rest of her home, we brought in some playful, girly touches like a seventies-inspired, patterned wallpaper, a dramatic chandelier and a furry stool.
Now, she will have a beautiful space to shoot videos and photos, stage looks and try out new beauty products. We can’t wait to share the full reveal with you soon! For more on the process of working with Jessi, and some of our design inspo, take a look at her recent blog post about the space!
You are what you wear!
Wow! It’s been great to see all the responses to our closet personality quiz. If you haven’t taken the quiz yet, you may want to before jumping into this post - it's all about ways to inject your style personality into your closet!
Often our interior aesthetic is deeply connected to our personal style. What does it mean if your wardrobe is full of rich textiles like velvet and fur? Or, if you’re always drawn to precious materials like pearl or marble? I’ve highlighted a few of my current favorite style trends, and am breaking down what it means if they’re part of your personal style and how to integrate them into your closet.
If your style seed is deeply rooted in floral aesthetics, chances are you have a girly and feminine sensibility. However, if you’re drawn to black and dark backgrounds with flower print foregrounds, you’re not afraid of a hint of unexpected drama.
Florals can find their way into your space through wallpapers, fabrics, or the old fashioned way - a delicate arrangement!
Fabulous, fierce and totally unapologetic, you embrace the finer things in life, especially when it comes to your style. Whether you opt for new or vintage, real or faux, you definitely have a wild side.
Fur accents can add a touch of glamour to an otherwise tame interior, whether through pillows, an ottoman, or a fluffy rug.
If you’re a lace-lover, you likely embrace the romantic and delicate details. Lucky for you, it’s always in style and there are a million ways to incorporate it into your wardrobe (and home).
Try introducing a traditional window treatment, or if that's not quite your speed, the pattern can be incorporated and abstracted on a larger scale for a wall surface!
Leather can be naughty or nice! If you have lots of leather pieces in your wardrobe, you more than likely appreciate a modern, sleeker aesthetic with a bit of edginess.
Leather can add a tactile touch to even the smallest details in a space. You can turn up the luxe with a leather drawer pull, a wall panel, or an accent furniture piece.
The pinnacle of sophisticated textiles, if marble makes you merry, you’re attracted to chic, old-world European style. While marble is often associated with home decor, you’ve likely landed some pieces that feature a marble print, whether on workout pants or a handbag.
Although most commonly seen on the closet floor, I prefer to get the pattern up on the wall, so it can be truly appreciated! Accent pieces and floating shelves are also great ways to get a little carrara in the closet!
Whether you’re an actual renegade or simply someone who enjoys a touch of edge in your wardrobe, metal studs are your way of adding dimension -- and rebellion -- to your style.
This trendy tactile element can also make its way into closet decor, through upholstered wall surfaces and nailhead ottomans!
Thanks to designers like Nicholas Kirkwood for modernizing and reinventing the way in which you can integrate pearls into your personal style. If you’re wearing pearls -- whether a timeless strand necklace or on a chic new shoe -- chances are you put your own spin on it, merging classic with cool.
Pearls, though precious, can find their place in the most functional of closets! Delicate drawer knobs or an ultra-luxe light fixture are both great places to incorporate a pearly accent.
What’s more iconic than a quilted Chanel 2.55 Classic Flap bag? Not much, which is why quilted and tufted accessories resonate with fashionistas who value enduring style.
If the added softness of a quilted surface appeals to your senses, there are endless ways to achieve this in your space! Quilting can quickly elevate any upholstered accent piece, wall panel, or closet backing.
This rich and luxurious fall/winter fabric is a designer dream and was pervasive on NYFW F/W ‘17 runways. If you’re someone who's constantly crushing on velvet pieces -- whether a kimono, dress, or shoes -- you aren’t afraid to indulge in opulence.
Velvet in a space means guaranteed glam! While it's perfect for a tufted ottoman or a simple stool, this fabric brings a luxurious sheen to an upholstered door, wall, or window treatment as well!
Find your passion, work hard, perfect your handshake, be an observer, and hire a millennial!
Often, when I’m being interviewed I’m asked what advice I have for other entrepreneurs, and how I built a brand from scratch. I recently shared some of my tips for new business owners with Beverly Hills Magazine and talked about passion, working hard, and a few other helpful tidbits for starting a business. But, I wanted to take to CLOSETPHILE to further crystallize a few of the most important tips.
Accept the Challenges
Every business, whether in the incubation stage or several years in, experiences its share of challenges. You must be willing to accept those and grow from them. I started LA Closet Design in 2007 when the recession was starting and the luxury market was quickly shrinking. Yet, that confluence of events taught me to be lean with overhead expenses and never lose sight of business development. Another challenge I face regularly, and I know other entrepreneurs encounter, is feeling like there’s not enough time in the day. I suggest staying focused and always coming back to what best serves the brand and your mission. That will help you prioritize.
Create with Purpose and Authenticity
Entrepreneurs and businesses need a purpose or mission, ideally one that feels authentic. My mission is simple, yet clear: to create wardrobe and storage spaces that are balanced functionally and aesthetically. I aim to help individuals look at their space -- and their life -- as we work together to create an environment that optimizes peace, efficiency and beauty. Once you outline your authentic purpose, it makes it much easier to bring every decision back to that.
Determining what success looks like for you and your business will make it a lot easier to achieve it. In fact, for many people, success isn’t just a measurement for their professional endeavors; it’s a measurement for their life. For me, success is figuring out the aim and purpose and accomplishing it; if you can have fun while doing so, then that’s a bonus. Pinpoint how you define success and then stop at nothing to achieve it!
Inspire and Be Inspired
If you’re not consistently inspired as you’re building your brand or trying to inspire those around you, finding success will be difficult. I can cite so many inspirations that motivated get me to this point -- from selling Cutco knives in high school, to playing on the Varsity basketball team (vertically-challenged and all!), to my first laboratory manager, to being a Board Member at On Assignment, a recruiting firm for scientists, to my perfectionist piano teacher. And, today, I am inspired by things like travel, design, mentors, my favorite charity, Dress for Success, and other women creators (last weekend’s Simply Fashion & Beauty Conference was full of fierce females!).
Stray, Don’t Stay, on Course
For a long while I thought I’d be a chemist. But, then, after graduating, I decided to go for my MBA, which opened up this new world to me and helped me land a job with a kitchen and bath design firm. I can assure you, no chemistry was happening at that job! Through that experience, I discovered an untapped niche and underappreciated space -- closet design. If I stayed the course, I’m not sure I would have ever found my passion for closet design. So, my advice is to remain fluid and be open to changing course in search of your own success.
Structure to Scale
It’s important that your business is poised to grow. Without getting ahead of yourself, have the big picture in mind so that you’re incrementally working towards it. Beyond taking on more clients, I’ve carved out new revenue opportunities that still reflect the DNA of my brand. For example, I recently collaborated with Max Mirani to create an LA Closet Design signature carry-on line, LAMove. And, I am working on a high-end line of closet accessories, a closet coffee table book, and expanding my business in the Middle East (Abu Dhabi and Dubai).
Nylon X Simply
Last weekend, Nylon Magazine took over the Grove rooftop with Simply, for a simply chic day in the sun! The event was full of panels on social media and brand-building, and a stylish sampling of LA's hottest creative businesses. Thanks, Nylon Mag for having me!
Simple adjustments to small spaces can have a big impact!
I’ve worked with nearly every size closet, from just a few racks along the wall to a two-story behemoth, and no matter how big or small the space, I follow many of the same practices. But, this post focuses on simple and stylish solutions for small spaces. Whether you live in an urban locale with limited square footage or share a closet with your significant other, there are several ways you can maximize your compact closet. Just remember the five ‘s’-es of small space solutions.
See the Space
If you can’t see what's in your closet, you’re going to end up with more pieces strewn on the bed or draped over a chair than hanging up. So, if you have a deep closet where light often gets trapped or one with poor lighting in general, using battery-operated LED rods to illuminate hanging items is an effective way to brighten the overall space.
Separate with Pull-Outs
If you’re not already using pull-out shelves or drawers I highly recommend getting some. This helps your clothing sit upright, rather than stacked, so you can clearly see everything inside.
Set up a System
When you don't have the luxury of space, you have to be diligent about closet organization. Find a system that works for you -- whether that’s sorting pieces by color, category or occasion -- and stick to it. Finding items will require much less effort if you know generally where you should be looking.
Stack the Door
Adding hooks for hanging purses, scarves or jewelry, or mounting a few bars to create a shoe rack are optimal ways to take advantage of extra space on the back of a walk-in door.
Switch to Slimline Hangers
An effective way to create the feeling of more space is by replacing your bulky hangers with sleek slimline hangers. You’ll find you’re able to hang more items and the closet’s overall aesthetic will be more uniform.
Check out this month’s feature in House Beautiful for more small space solutions!