The average American will change residences 11 times in their life and over 20% of us have moved to a different city or state in the last five years. For those of us who believe our homes should be our sanctuaries, a move from one region to another can raise a dilemma – how to assimilate to our new surroundings while honoring past regions we still love?
LA-based designer Genna Margolis of Shapeside faced this challenge after a move from another iconic city – New York. In her Spanish Revival condo, she seamlessly blended aspects of both aesthetics and created a stylish, comfortable home for her and her husband.
“I tried to blend different elements that can have a feel for both (aesthetics)”, says Genna. “For example, I have cacti but then I have a roll-arm white linen sofa which could be considered a more traditional Hampton pick or my white upholstered Bobbin chair and ottoman. When I was in NY I was designing for many traditional Hamptons homes where the Bobbin chair was definitely a must. Another example would be my live edge console mixed with an art deco brass bar cart.
“My design aesthetic can be a mix of many different design elements but ultimately I achieve a light and airy feel for any home with a range of different decor and furnishings.”
Art plays a large role in Genna’s designs. Thoughtful choices bring life and personality to her home.
“My art is very personal to me. All of the art has an actual meaning. The art above my live edge console is my Ketubbah from my wedding.”
My modern sanctuary is my home; in particular my living room. Since I work from home I tend to work on my sofa primarily. I love the light colors, natural light, and I always light a Le Labo Santal 26 candle for the perfect scent.
“I had two big challenges when designing my home. The first was bringing over my furniture from my NYC apartment located in a pre-war building on the upper east side and placing it in a modern Spanish-revival California condo. The pieces really didn’t go but I had to find the right decor to bring it all together. For example, rugs, pillows, plants, accent tables, etc.”
“The huge ram photo above my sofa was actually something my husband and I picked. My husband absolutely loves animals and I love art to have an interesting element to it which is how we chose it – it’s a ram but has his tongue sticking out. It’s a stock photo that I blew up to be 40 x 60.
There isn’t a right or wrong reason for choosing art – it really should just be pieces that speak to you and are not just space fillers.
Wall Hanging: CB2
Unique accessories are used sparingly to enhance their importance and avoid a feeling of clutter.
Pendant Light: Nuevo
“The dining room is the first thing you see when you walk into the apartment. I didn’t want the dining area to take over the entrance way so it was important to get the proper scale for the the dining table so it will allow the most walkway from the entrance door but still be functional.”
“The Slim Aarons photograph in the dining area was a wedding gift from my old boss.”
The metallic bar cart reflects NYC and old Hollywood style. Its scale and airiness are perfect for the small dining space.
Sconces: Daikonic, through Etsy
“Don’t fill up every corner – having space between furnishings can make a room feel much more open.”
I think what has shaped my philosophy has been continuously designing for clients with all different tastes and styles. I have found the one common thread is everyone wants a home that looks beautiful but is realistic that they could live in forever. I believe every home should make you happy when you walk in the door. Genna Margolis