A Ceramicist & Architect's Hand-Crafted California Home

A Ceramicist & Architect's Hand-Crafted California Home

Marisa Vitale
Oct 26, 2018

Name: Linda Hsiao, Kagan Taylor and Scallion the Cat
Location: Highland Park — Los Angeles, California
Years lived in: 2 years, renting

Linda and Kagan's Highland Park home is a perfect reflection of their combined creative collaborations and organic aesthetics. The space is filled with handmade treasures, meaningful art, and friend's crafts to create a truly cozy and original style.

Linda is a ceramic artist, whose creations can be found at Knotwork LA, while Kagan is an architect and is the co-founder of the fabrication laboratory, Knowhow Shop. The two met through Linda's roommate Jena and Kagan's business partner, Justin, both co-workers at the time; they were drawn to each other's passions for creating and love of design. After five years together, they recently got married in Sequoia National Park. Their businesses and relationship have continued to grow as they push each other to keep creating and crafting. Their home is a great reflection of their love for art and crafts and nature and design.

Apartment Therapy Survey:

Our Style: Handmade, handcrafted along with a mix of vintage and natural materials.

Inspiration: Craft, Design, and Nature. We are inspired both by the things people create, and the things they've left alone.

Favorite Element: Scallion the cat, he goes with everything!

Biggest Challenge: Keeping our home tidy! With all our collections it's a challenge creating organized chaos in order to appreciate everything in our home. Second challenge is keeping a house full of treasured fragile items with our feisty young cat Scallion always testing how objects bounce off the counter... it may be time for a second curio cabinet.

What Friends Say: People admire Linda's eye for things. She always finds treasures and is good at arranging and displaying what could in another hand easily become clutter. We joke that we are aesthetic hoarders. It's only Linda's ability to present our collections in a way that makes us look like sane, stylish people.

Biggest Embarrassment: Heaps of laundry... always

Proudest DIY: Scallion's cat ladder. We both couldn't stomach putting in a carpeted cat tree even though we knew he'd love it...but wanted to make sure he got to climb and look out. He loves perching up high and looking out to the garden. So we found an old ladder, put it on a jute rug, hang a hammock and, presto, cat playground!

Biggest Indulgence: Paintings from my friend Hillery Sproatt; the table scene placed in my dining room has these magical little white blobs with Delft looking stories within and another one is placed in my office where I get to get lost in the dreamlike image. Every time I look at them I feel like there's something else magical to be found. And wooden sculptures by Julian Watts.

Best Advice: "Keep nothing in your house that you don't know to be useful or believe to be beautiful." -William Morris

Dream Sources: Everything in Handcrafted Modern by Leslie Williamson from JD blunk's hand-carved sink, all of Nakashima's handmade furniture all over his home, the treasure that Charles and Ray Eames collected from travels, the landscape spilling into Albert Frey's home and Sam Maloof's collection of art and craft


Oak Dining Table — The top made of old oak table leaves from Silver Lake Architectural Salvage
Curio Cabinet — Craigslist
Drexel dresser with burl handles — The Hunt Vintage It was a little less expensive because the handles aren't original but we like them better! Someone was channeling George Nakashima
Wall Bench — Architecture school project, this was originally a mold for an art skateboard made with friends at UCLA.
Tall Stool — Craigslist
Industrial Stools — Brooklyn factory/vintage
Dining Stools — Reclaimed redwood-Kagan. Also architectural salvage these redwood slabs were originally column bases in some mansion. on the bottom you can see the radius of what must have been a pretty massive Grecian column!
Baskets — Various/vintage
Fruit bowl — Sylvia Song
Ceramics — Knotwork (unless otherwise noted)
Mini Vase — Yenworks My friend Seoyen made us hand thrown mini vases as name placements for each guest at our wedding. Each signed at the bottom K + L, these are our mini vases.
Terrarium — Pottery Barn
Woven Rock — Kobo Shop, Seattle
Big Pot — Salty Dog Studio, Seattle
Brush and Dustbin — March SF
Hand Forged Japanese Scissors — Play Mountain East, SF
Carving Fragment — Fred Rose We visited Fred Rose down at his studio in Orange County. He does such inspiring work!
Speaker — Tivoli Audio
The Lore and Lure of the Sequoia, vintage book — Book Alley Found in Pasadena after we got married in Sequoia National Park
Block Print — Ido Yoshimoto
Brushes — Launderess, Handmade, Yondershop
Light Fixture — Brendan Ravenhill
Rattle Board — Kagan built, Linda designed to keep us organized during rattle production
Handmade Wooden Rattles — Knotwork LA - One of the first products we designed together for a friend's daughter and it became Knotwork LA's first product.

Spoon sculptures — Julian Watts Studio
Plaster garden artwork — The Little Shop of flowers - Japan
Dried Flower art — The Little Shop of flowers - Japan
Table Setting Painting — Hillery Sproatt
Cactus Painting — Max Lesser
Bible Print — Book Alley
Mirror — Vintage
Vintage Japanese Clacker — Estate Sale
Banner — Lindi Wood / Kagan's Mom

Hand Forged Skillet — Blu Skillet Ironware
Ceramic see thru jar — Yenworks
Brush Jar — Mt Washington Pottery
Coil brush jar — Judy Hsiao/ Linda's Mom
Folding Stool — Ikea
Trash Bin — Simple Human
Knives — Japanese: Anzen Hardware, Hardwicks, Fell Knives
Spice Grinder Footed Bowl — Nate Pidduck pottery
Peppermill / Yellow vintage Stockpot — Dansk
Salt cellar — Art Noka
Copper Bins — vintage
Iron Spice Grinder — March SF
Iron Mortar and Pestle — Linda's Grandpa
Walnut Rolling Pin, Ladle, Watercolor — Robert Turek of Lustered Walnut
Inlay Ceramics — Knotwork LA
Lidded Jars/Talisman — Mt Washington Pottery
Garlic Jar / Coffee Dripper / Shallot Jar — Yen Works
Electric Kettle — Bodum
Dutch Oven — Le Creuset

Wooden Utensils — Linda Hsiao. When we first started dating Kagan kept me busy at the woodshop by handing me a carving knife and showed me how to carve my first spoon. After I made enough utensils for home I began teaching wooden utensil classes at Kagan's Knowhow shop LA for a couple years. And since then our personal collection has grown quite a bit as each class I taught I made Demo samples as well.

Coffee Grinder — Arcade / Vintage Ebay Find
Calendar — Phoeobe Wahl
Porcupine Table Crumb Brush — Redecker
Fruit Prints — Plant Planet
Tomato Print — Kitri Wood / Xmas Gift from Kagan's Sister
Garlic Braid — Washington farmers market , recently collected on our honeymoon
Small Rope Basket — Doug Johnson
Hand-forged Double Hook — Carson Terry
Brass Hook — Ramsey Condor
Cheese Plate — Stefanie Kulhaus
Walnut Board — Liza Reyes
Maple Cutting Board prototype — Linda Hsiao
Calendar Tea Towel — Fog Linen
Da Bird — from Rosie Bunny Bean
Burl Cheese Board — Wagon Wheel Burl, collected on our honeymoon

Guest Room / Living Room:
Daybed — Kagan
Sofa — Craigslist
Vintage Ladder, Los Angeles Ladder company. Bought when our local multi generational hardware store was going out of business.
Stool — From Hsiao Family brought back from Taiwan.
Rug — Pasadena Rug Mart
Sheepskin — PCC Flea Market
Couch Covers — All Roads for Anthropologie
Tie Die Pillows — Cathy Callahan
Woven Pillows — Vintage
Wool Blanket — Hillery Sproatt
Alpaca Blanket — Florecera
Handmade Banner — Lindi Wood / Kagan's mom
Scallion in his basket Portrait, Custom commissioned by Keiko Brodeur / Small Adventure
Inlay Platters — Knotwork LA / Linda Hsiao
Man Pondering Options — Kitri Wood / Kagan's Sister
Vintage Woven Taiwanese Pillows — Linda's Grandpa Yang
Cactus Embroidery — Vintage
½ Scale Eames Split — UCLA Group Project / Kagan
Mt. Hood Silkscreen — Sue Allen , Recently collected from Timberline lodge during our Honeymoon roadtrip
Myrtle Burl Shelf — Collected piece of wood from our honeymoon.
Bible Print — Book Alley
Shelf Ceramics — Linda Hsiao (unless otherwise noted)
Brass Tea Set — Estate Sale
Woodwork — Kagan + Linda
Wooden Boulders — centerpieces for our wedding made by Kagan
Leather Basket — Stardust, Japan
Watering Cans — Haws / Vintage Estate Sale Find
Minerals — Place 8 Healing
Boat — Ron Klebba
Sweet Potato Cake Mold — Vintage Estate Sale Find
Venus Candle — Palace Store, Portland OR
Light Fixture — Sunbeam Vintage
Shelf — Kagan made these for the first time Linda went to SF to vend.. They break down for shipping and were easily the most beautiful shelves at West Coast Craft that year

Candle — Le Feu De L'eau
Hinoki Handsoap — Sonomama
Bud Vase — Heather Rosenman
Match Holder — Eleonor Bostrom
Planter — Mt Washington Pottery
Planter — Judy Hsiao
Wood Bucket — Muji
Crock — Vintage
Lid — Vintage primitive
Cactus Print — Small Adventure
Ladies Embroidery — Vintage
Mirror — Vintage
Hand Towels — Heather Taylor Home

Hook — Rebel and Quill
Wooden Pitchfork — Coat/ hat rack / Estate sale
Uten.silo — Vintage/Dorothee Maurer-Becker/Vitra, Bought from the basement of the Ingo Maurer store in soho, Dead stock from basement of his ex-wife's Uten.silo design

Vintage Tensor Lamp — Flea market find
Silk-screened Calendar — Gold Teeth Brooklyn
Eames Office Chair — DWR
Vintage Boby Cart by Joe Columbo — Craigslist
Custom Desk — Kagan built from salvaged Deodar Cedar from 2011 Pasadena Windstorm
Custom Cork Office Board — Kagan
Credenza — Vintage
Woven hanging basket — Ikea
Watercolor Artwork — Hillery Sporatt
Good luck Inlay Talisman — Knotwork LA & Mt Washington Pottery

Bed/Bookcase/Bench/Valet — Kagan
Tansu — Vintage CL
Mid-century gentleman's wardrobe — Vintage CL
Folk art bookshelf made from salvaged wall Upstate NY
Nightstand — Vintage
Metal Chest — Vintage
Quilt — Lindi Wood / Wedding gift from Kagan's mom made from vintage Linens and embroidered fabrics.
Sheets — Ikea/Matteo home
Table Lamps — Vintage
Reading Swing Light — Brendan Ravenhill
Fan — Vornado
Candle — Le feu De L'eau
Tambour box — vintage
Terrarium — Pottery Barn
Living Redwood Burl — Collected on honeymoon roadtrip
Porcelain inlay fossil wall hanging — Linda Hsiao
Orchid Print — estate sale
Small print — kitri wood, Kagan's Sister
Tapestry — Mr Merz
Wedding Bells — Vintage Brass / Mt. Washington Pottery , Strung between two poles and two people at each ends we got married under these brass and ceramic bells in Sequoia National Park.
Laundry Basket — Mexico on the side of the road.
Hampers — African Baskets
Vintage Cat Fiber Art — Cheu-Mei Hsiao, Linda's Mom made when she was in highschool.
Necklaces — Vintage / Various
Grumpy Bear — Merci Milo / Common Folke

Thanks, Linda and Kagan!

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