We’re back with a new guest tastemaker for some quick-fire questions and a mini-curation of some fab Chairish finds!
This week we are joined by interior designer Elizabeth Law. Upon graduating from Parson’s School of Design, Elizabeth made her way to the West Coast, where she launched her Los-Angeles based firm. Known for her ability to mix antique elements with contemporary, her specialty is in designing spaces meant for entertaining. So during the pandemic, her firm has fittingly been offering social distance-friendly services for those having trouble dreaming up a holiday-themed tablescape or mantel display.
Read on to find out which experience at a young age inspired her to collect furniture and home decor, and why she feels social media is a double-edged sword for the design industry.
Do you collect anything?
I have been collecting furniture since I was ten. My dad took me to Morocco for a family tradition we call “The Ten Year Old Trip,” and I came back with rugs, a tea set, cushions… All things I still have! And I have accumulated plenty more since then.
What’s something you wish would change in the design industry?
The interior design industry has taken the spotlight in some ways due to social media. With platforms like Instagram and Pinterest, images are re posted over and over and we have access to seeing so many beautiful things which is amazing.
The curse of this, is that things become overly trendy very quickly. So I hope some originality comes back into the fold soon. It’s difficult because large companies who see what’s trending, are quick to produce it quickly and cheaply, ultimately losing its originality.
What’s a current trend that you hope doesn’t exist in 100 years?
Waste. I hope that the world makes some sharp turns very soon in terms of focusing more on sustainability, regenerative design and upcycling: Updating what you already have, repurposing things you find, consigning, and using existing resources, rather than just producing more and more.
What is the coolest piece or design element you’ve ever incorporated into a space?
I recently was part of furnishing a newly renovated home that has a wine cellar that truly feels like it stands still in time. The architects did an incredible job. When we were trying to work out the lighting, we brainstormed and landed on using flame rather than electric. I sketched an idea for an oil lamp – taking inspiration from things I had seen – and one of my colleagues made them by hand in their kitchen that very weekend. It transformed the space even more, giving it an absolutely magical ambiance.
You are known for your ability to juxtapose contemporary with antique. What is your strategy for striking that careful balance?
I try to consider the elements in a space. Not just contemporary and antique but also surfaces, textures and tones. If I look around the room, I want to see a bit of upholstery, wood, stone, iron, glass…And I also want it to be inviting. I find that antique pieces help tell a story. They have a bit of soul. The contemporary pieces typically serve the purpose of function and neutrality to highlight the more dynamic items visually. It’s all about balance.
Headshot Image by Jenna Peffley