After graduating from Harvard’s Graduate School of Design, Chloe Redmond Warner founded Oakland-based Redmond Aldrich in 2005. Five years later, a handwritten letter from Taylor Shanahan to Chloe resulted in her joining the firm (in addition to a lifelong friendship), where she now leads her own in-house design studio. Their diverse work has been featured in Architectural Digest, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times T Magazine, and many others.
What made you passionate about interior design? How’d you get your start in the industry?
Taylor Shanahan: I grew up with a mom who changed our living room layout every few months. I am one of five kids, so we were always helping her move furniture around the house. Caring about interior design is ingrained in me. I fell in love with Chloe’s charming personality and style when I came across her Domino home tour. I wrote her a letter asking for a job at Redmond Aldrich Design, and 13 years later, I still think she’s a hilarious design genius.
Chloe Warner: I had a lightbulb moment during architecture school, when I realized I was responding more to aesthetics than I was to academics. There was a great firm in Boston called C&J Katz Studio that did both architecture and interior design, and after one summer there as an intern, I knew I was an interior designer in my heart. Never looked back.
What do you find most compelling about Chairish?
TS: The variety of furniture that’s listed on the website. It feels like the team at Chairish is able to read my mind with the promoted listings shown on the bottom of the webpage. They show me things I didn’t know I needed!
CW: Excellence and availability. My dream is to have a Chairish Showcase House, and have it come together in one month.
How does sustainability factor into your design choices and love of vintage?
TS: We like to specify a mix of furnishings (vintage, retail, and custom). Repurposing furniture is a great way to add character to spaces so they don’t feel so one note. And sourcing vintage is a great way to reach a tight deadline, especially if you need the perfect piece in a pinch.
CW: Sustainability is the stealth superpower of vintage. It’s an easy choice for us but it’s also the right thing to do.
What are three of your favorite pieces on Chairish now?
TS: I love this early 20th-century Tabriz rug; these Philip LaVerne etched brass side tables; and this set of four 1970’s Afra & Tobia Scarpa “Monk” dining chairs.
CW: My favorites include this three-seater leather sofa by Børge Mogensen for Fredericia; this Hans Wegner valet chair for Johannes Hansen; and this Murano glass mushroom table lamp.
Favorite way to create a statement-making moment in a room?
TS: I’m a sucker for a floral fabric or wallpaper. A nice way to make a statement in a room is to reupholster a key furniture item in a large- or small-scale floral and add impact with a geometric wallpaper that is an opposing scale. Below is an example of this:
CW: Perfectly said, Taylor, and I love this image.
Do you have any go-to color palettes and color combos?
TS: We try to make every palette its own so we don’t lean on a palette for more than one project. That said, it seems like blue and pink tones always make their way into my trays.
What advice do you have for first-time clients about making their spaces truly personal?
TS: Don’t be afraid to send your designer furniture, fabrics, or art that you love! We want to incorporate those pieces. We want your home to feel like it represents the person living in it. Personal touches add depth and make the most successful projects.
CW: I agree with all of Taylor’s answers here! She nailed it.
Lead image: photo by Leslie Williamson