Though we never anticipated it, 2020 is officially the “Year of the Home.” With the rapid spread of Covid-19, companies quickly moved to a work-from-home model, travel plans were squashed, and cozy restaurant booths were traded in for home-cooked meals at the dining table. It’s been a unique time, and one that has made us appreciate the comforts and convenience of a well-designed space more than ever.
Of course, interior designers have had this insight all along. Amy Sklar built a successful career around creating spaces that are functional, livable, and above all, comfortable. She effortlessly merges modern and classic aesthetics, and collaborates with her clients to help them create their dream home. Once we began sheltering in place, Amy saw an opportunity to connect with clients in a way she hadn’t before: virtually. This week, she launched E-Design, allowing her to work with clients from across the globe, safely. She tells us more:
In short, what is e-design? How does it differ from your usual work?
E-design with Amy Sklar Design is a process that takes place entirely “online,” but that does not mean that we will never see our clients. In fact, the first step to all of our online design projects is a video conference meeting. We still feel that nothing beats some face to face interaction (2020-style, that is). We are used to meeting clients and presenting materials in-person, but I’m really happy with this alternative. We are very communicative, and materials can always be sent to a client for review. Not only does it feel safer, but it also opens up our services to people outside of Los Angeles.
What prompted you to add e-design to your services?
We feel really strongly about keeping our families and our clients safe, and we also wanted to be able to keep doing what we love. Being able to provide design services while minimizing physical contact seemed to make a lot of sense, and I’m also excited about the possibility of working with people from all over the country with a variety of interiors!
Beyond the concept of e-design, could you explain what clients can expect? What signature “Amy Sklar” elements are included?
Our clients can expect the same level of service that they would if they were working with us “in-person”, but most interactions will take place digitally, with things like interactive mood boards, and digital shopping lists. In our various E-Design packages we intend to feature the same kind of unique, handmade, and vintage pieces that we source from our favorite local makers and shops. And while the design process can happen fairly quickly online, we are not aiming to have this be the interior design version of “fast fashion.” If we specify a handmade piece there may be a wait, but we promise, it will always be worth it! We really feel now more than ever that supporting local talent is vital to the survival of our industry, and we all need to be looking out for each other. We are so fortunate to have such a wonderful group of artists in our design family and love sharing their talent with as many people as possible! Some of our all-time favorites are Meredith Metcalf, who makes incredible ceramic lamps and vessels in Highland Park, Hamish Robertson, the wildly talented photographer from Silverlake, and Chaffee Graham of 4th Period Woodshop, who makes the most stunning custom fine, handmade furniture ever. There is also undeniable magic in well-made beautifully crafted furniture and accessories. If you are like me at all, your home and its contents have really taken a beating over the past months, and I have found such comfort in the items that are well made enough not only to handle it, but actually improve with their use.
How would you describe your aesthetic and approach to design?
My aesthetic is truly eclectic, and I know it’s an overused term, but it really fits. I was a total nomad growing up and lived in every style home there is – mid-century modern, 100-year-old clapboard, split level ranch. That experience really fostered in me a deep understanding of the myriad architectural and interior styles that exist, and I carry that experience with me in every project I do today. The through-line with all of my designs, no matter what the style, however, is to keep things balanced, and unfussy: the right combination of scale, color, and texture are essential, that and something handmade, always!
What is one thing you think every room needs?
We all have realized how important our homes are the last few months. For someone who is realizing they aren’t happy with the look and feel of their home, what room would you suggest they start with for e-design?
So often people focus on the parts of the home that the public sees, (living and dining rooms, kitchens, etc.) and their personal areas sometimes get short shrift. Now with so much time spent at home, private areas really deserve attention, especially the spaces that you go to recharge, like bedrooms and bathrooms. Now more than ever, I think people are seeing their homes holistically. When all of your rooms work together it creates a tremendous sense of harmony, which I think we can all benefit from, now, and forever. A simple redesign of these spaces can improve your quality of life.
Is E-Design something you’ll continue once the pandemic is over?
Absolutely! We love finding new ways to reach people and help them achieve their dream spaces!