Welcome to the first edition of our newest series on Chairish, #FoundAndChairished! We’re constantly hearing from designers who’ve found incredible pieces on Chairish, and now we’re sharing some of their stories with you. Be on the lookout for new #FoundAndChairished stories here on the blog as well as on our Instagram account.

For our first feature, we caught up with Betsy Burnham, an LA-based designer whose vibrant work has been featured everywhere from The New York Times to The Today Show. Find out why Betsy’s a vintage lighting lover and how she likes to “turn the volume up a scooch.”

What Chairish item did you buy that you’d like to share a story about?

Countless vintage lamps, sconces, and chandeliers.

Why did you buy them? 

Vintage lighting is a great way to bring something stylish and offbeat into a room and give it personality — and it won’t break the budget.

In what room did you use them? 

Lighting from Chairish is everywhere in my world: in my living and dining rooms, in my home office, in the Goods by Burnham Design inventory, and on the way out the door to various clients’ homes.

In a few words, how would you describe your interior design style? 

I’ve been told it’s “a little bit country club, a little bit rock n’ roll.” I like classic things but try to turn the volume up a scooch.

How did you find the item you bought on Chairish, and what made you choose it? Did you have a specific search or were you just browsing? 

My most recent lamp purchase — vintage porcelain owl lamps — I found by accident when I was searching for vintage sideboards. Somehow I went down a lamp rabbithole. Or maybe those guys found me.

Did you know where you’d put this piece in your home when you bought it, or did you figure you’d find the right spot? 

They were too good not to buy — so now I’ll wait for the right client and the right project. A wonderful new client just told me that she “trusts me completely” — so I think maybe she’s a contender.

Collection of various colorful ceramic lamp bases with owl lamp base
The owl lamps, with some new friends

Why do you love shopping vintage? And how does sustainability factor into your choices of new products vs. vintage finds? 

I’ve been drawn to vintage pieces and their unique shapes and flavors as long as I’ve been designing, and before sustainability was even part of the conversation. Of course now that it’s top of mind, I’m grateful my taste is in line because it’s an easy way for me to participate and stay active and aware. I grew up on the East Coast in pretty traditional surroundings, so there’s a nostalgia and familiarity in decades-old pieces that ring true, and give my design a level of individuality that new pieces simply can’t.

Are there any dream vintage or antique pieces you wish you could have? 

Maybe a fabulous mid-century Swedish rug, or a Tina Barney photograph. Also, I just started collecting Majolica for a client’s powder bath and I’m loving the deep granny dive.

Photos by @commedecarson

April 4, 2021

Dennis Sarlo is the executive editor of Chairish and a lover of all things design-related. Prior to joining the team, he served as the executive editor of Dering Hall and was the first site director of Architectural Digest. He was also part of the founding team of travel startup Jetsetter. He lives in New York.