L.A. Inspiration, Take Two: The PDC

Still feeling the glow from my first design trip to L.A. last week. Roaming a new landscape is so invigorating, even if you see the same store you know from home, but in a completely different and unexpected setting (See: Restoration Hardware in my previous post).

Well, I used to be the marketing director at the Washington Design Center, and got to know its showrooms by heart. During that time, I also visited the Boston Design Center and the Design Center at the Merchandise Mart in Chicago (where I still work with their team). Each building is essentially a huge square or rectangle, with rows of showrooms down fairly narrow corridors.

These buildings are NOT red, green and blue.

PDC1

Nor do their hallways look like this:

PDC

Nor do showrooms, like Kneedler Fauchere in this case, have atria or trees in the middle of them:

kneedler-tree

The Pacific Design Center certainly was a different experience.

It started with Jobi Blachy, who owns the Quintus showroom there. I got to know him at the DC Design Center, when he helmed Edward Ferrell + Lewis Mittman and visited its DC showroom from time to time. We stayed in touch, and agreed to meet while I was out there.

After an incredible breakfast at The Ivy (no celebrity sitings, alas, but what a gorgeous dining room),

ivy

Jobi showed me the furniture, lighting, art and fabric collections in his boutique showroom, which are exquisite. We will get a taste of them this fall at the DC Design House, where designers Josh Hildreth and Victor Sanz will incorporate Quintus pieces into their library design. (Quintus is locally represented through Evans & Sheldon in Georgetown.)

Take a look:

quintus-dining

 

quintus-mirrors

 

quintus-lights

 

quintus-pillows

Jobi tells me that he goes to the workrooms and factories to inspect custom pieces that are headed to his design clients, to make sure they are in perfect order. Before our 8:30 am breakfast, he had already been round to do some inspections. That’s what you get with a small, ultra-custom design firm.

After I left Jobi’s showroom, I wandered through Kneedler Fauchere, which was a sumptuous walk:

kneedler-window

Nice view! Here’s another:

lcdq

The fabrics were full of incredible, saturated color and patterns:

kneedler-wingchair

 

kneedler-fabric

Samuel & Sons is on the same floor. Its flagship trim showroom is like a candy store.

samuelsons

 

samuelsons-leather

 

samuelsons3

Downstairs, I wanted to stay in Ralph Pucci all day long.

ralphpucci

 

pucci

They had a separate area for the sleek Jens Risom collection.

jensrisom

I had not heard of Reagan Hayes before, but boy is her showroom chic (and the architecture in the background doesn’t hurt):

reaganhayes

My last stop was at Dedon, one of my favorite outdoor-furniture companies.

dedon-chairs

The best news there, which I had to hear all the way out in LA, was that they have a new showroom at the DC Design Center, so I hope to see more of them locally.

As any designer will tell you, travel always peaks the senses and brings you home with a refreshed creative drive. Between this trip and a tour of Dutch design in The Netherlands this May, I’m feeling incredibly inspired!

SharePin on PinterestShare on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on Google+Email this to someone

Comments

  1. Jeff Sampson says:

    Hey Jennifer – Thanks for such a lovely post on PDC. Sorry I didn’t know you were here in LA, would loved to have connected! Not sure if you knew I’m here at PDC as VP of Marketing. We’ve shared this post on our social media to extend your amazing feature. Hope all is well with you … seems to be the case! Keep in touch, and keep the great work going!

    Best –
    Jeff Sampson

  2. The PDC will always have a special spot in my heart as I worked there many, many years ago when Clarence House actually still had a showroom there. A trip to the “Blue Whale” (as the locals like to call it) always a fun time! Kneedler Fauchere is one of my favorites and Samuel & Sons is definitely like being in a candy store! I must pay a visit soon.