Founder of Arteriors, Mark Moussa, says he fell in love with design at an early age. That’s obvious to visitors of Arteriors first retail store, just launched in Los Angeles. Arteriors offers a wide spectrum of unique hand-crafted styles in luxury materials including leather, glass, iron, brass, bronze, ceramic and porcelain.

Congratulations on your first retail store! Why did you choose to open a store now- and why LA?
Opening the first retail location in LA was part of a natural progression for the brand. Arteriors recently celebrated its 25th year and has continued to grow and evolve with the industry during that time through new product categories, showrooms and retailers. Los Angeles is an inspiring city with a fantastic design community and has consistently been a successful marketplace for us. It was a very organic step for Arteriors to expand our reach to our designer customers who now have a showroom and to sell directly to consumers for the first time.

For the first time, you aren’t in a design center but right in a neighborhood. How does that feel?
One of the things that I’m proud of is that we’ve brought some great, new life to the neighborhood. It’s so rewarding to have neighbors stop in and tell us what a difference the store has made on the street and in the community. Plus I love driving down Melrose at night and seeing our windows shining. Day or night – it’s great.

It’s a very exciting- and big!- step. What was the process for finding the space and designing the store?
We wanted to find and create a space that encapsulates the LA lifestyle from floor to ceiling. Location was key and we are thrilled with the spot we found – right on Melrose in the West Hollywood Design District, it’s a perfect spot for our designer customers and great for consumers on the street. The store is 1,800 square feet with the potential for an outside space and features floor to ceiling windows that allow for plenty of natural light. We incorporated fresh color hues of blues and greens to create a space with an open feel.

You said that opening a retail store was a natural progression for Arteriors. How has the brand grown?
When I first started Arteriors we were buying product off the shelf and I think the most inspired moment in our history came very early on when we made the conscious decision to start designing product ourselves. I started traveling much more and designing with our partners around the world, which started us on the path of becoming the company that we are today.

We’ll be debuting around 250 new introductions at April High Point Market including new pieces from our Guest Designer collaboration with Laura Kirar. We’re also very excited that Windsor Smith will be our next guest designer and will debut a collection in 2015.

We just published our Small Spaces issue. What tips do you have for our readers with small homes?
Remember to make the most of vertical space! You can still make a statement with height even if your footprint is small. Another great tip if you don’t have height – make creative uses of sconces. A great pair of sconces can make a design statement when you don’t have space for a Chandelier. Our customers have loved our Zanadoo Chandelier since we’ve introduced it. We recently designed an accompanying sconce and it’s been a great addition.

Thank you for taking the time to talk with us, Mark! We’ll see you next time we’re in LA!