Design Q&A with Wendy Schwartz of CuffHome

Design Q&A with Wendy Schwartz of CuffHome

Abby Stone
May 21, 2013

I'm warning you — if you've never clicked over to CuffHome to check out the shop's offerings, your Pinterest board is about to get a workout.  A fluffy ottoman with tiny gold feet peeking out, a 70s-inspired channel chair, a chain-wrapped ball lamp, a sleek blue velvet sofa, a rope-wrapped chandelier... although these glamorous yet organic, sensuous yet industrial pieces are rooted in a vintage aesthetic, they're completely modern. 

Wendy Schwartz, the designer behind them, describes them as having a "down to earth edge". In addition to designing furniture, Wendy, along with her partner, Kristi Bender, creates interiors that employ the same playful and surprising sensibility.    

What is your favorite design moment (house, restaurant, building, public space) in Los Angeles? 
I can only reflect on more recent experiences because I'm such a visual person, and I have very regular "wow" design moments. With that said, and though I currently have a personal interest in more relaxed and well-edited aesthetics, I always find anything Kelly Wearstler really amazing.  So, when I visited her store on Melrose for the first time, I felt like a kid in a candy store. I also LOVE every trip to LACMA — so many wow moments there! 

Let’s pretend you have $400 to update a 250 square foot space — how do you spend it? 
Thrift shop for sure, and then IKEA, followed by a trip to the hardware store. 

Tell us a little bit about your window for LCDQ's (La Cienega Design Quarter) Legends of La Cienega event? (Wendy's designs can be seen in the window of Harbinger starting May 7th). 
With our window, we stuck with a more classic black and white color scheme, because that never goes out of style. The new furnishings from Cuffhome inventively use timeless materials, applied in a very artful and inventive way. Artfulness and an evolved aesthetic are timeless. 

What 5 things would you put in a time capsule? (NOTE: The theme of this year's LCDQ event is Time Capsule: The Past, Present and Future of Design).
If by "time capsule" you mean design time capsule, I would put in the tools I can't live without: my computer, a pencil (with a big eraser!), paper and paint set, and a camera.
What period of history would you most like to have lived in? 
That's a tough one… maybe the late 60's - early 70's because it was such an artistically interesting time, and women had more freedoms than in the past. 

What would you bring with you if you were time traveling? 
I'd just bring water, healthy snacks and a change of clothes. 

What 5 things do you recommend keeping on hand for unexpected guests? 
That depends... are they spending the night or just stopping by? 

What’s your biggest design or home-related indulgence? 
Great hardware and lighting. They are the fine handbags and shoes of design. 

What’s your favorite home from a movie or TV show? 
I have a feeling it is going to be The Great Gatsby. 

What do you love most about LA? 
The light, especially as you get closer to the beach. The smell of the air after it rains. The easy access to the desert, mountains, ocean and culture. 

What’s your favorite cheap design trick or tip? 
Re-arrange what you already have.

To check out Cuffhome, click here.  For more about Wendy, click here.  For more about LCDQ and to register for the events, click here.  

(Image: Wendy Schwartz)

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