Fun in LA LA LAND: The day I met Kelly Wearstler.

I didnt want to mention this in my first post about LA- in case it didnt happen, but Erica and I were invited to visit THE HOLY LAND, design blogger Mecca, also known as Kelly Wearstler’s LA studio yesterday.

Im just going to give you the visual tour as I experienced it.

We arrive:

This greets us.

Im already star struck and really nervous. Why? I dont know. Its not like I thought anything bizarre  would happen, but I had butterflies!

On the opposite side of the entry:

( I love how she layers the abstracts: No frame, traditional frame with matting, and then float frame.)

We wait in this conference room and Erica and I notice we are both carrying the same American Apparel Clutch and wearing my box braid bangles. I take off my bangle and put it in my bag. I also contemplate that painting and how much I love it:

On the other side of the room:

(From Lonny Mag, my pic of this side of the room wasnt great)

The view from the entry to the main area… I absolutely love those doors…and dont even get me started on the floor. More people should do floors like this.

This is the other conference room. There were actually people conferencing in it while I was there so I didn’t get to photograph it on my own:

Now we enter the main work area: 

AHHHHHH!!!! My brain is going to explode from the awesomeness.

Look again:

You know what those are? Her VIBE TRAYS! I want to go touch everything in those vibe trays. But I resist.

Everything in this studio is so lush… the brass is heavy, the fabrics are thick, the wood is textured… its amazing.

You wouldnt even believe how gorgeous those stools are in real life.

This is where Kelly and her staff meet to go over projects:

All that is vintage of course. Everything in the studio is either custom or vintage. Duh.

The studio consists of a staff of about 15, and everything happens under this roof- the china lines for Pickard, the accessories for Bergdorf, the ready to wear collection as well as all  of her interior design projects of course!  Plans for a new flagship store are strewn about along with rug samples and wood flooring…  Im also told that she is currently working on her next book.

And Kelly still personally picks out every thread and doorknob in every project she does.

Of course I mentioned that as a consumer, I would LOVE to see some of her products at a lower price point… Im not saying low end (although how SICK would a Target collaboration be-as long as they dont crud up the quality of her stuff!) but you know, an under $500 range would be perfect. Way to tell an uber professional how to do their job, huh?

Anyway, aside from the massive design library that you see lining the walls, the back of the studio also has an artfully displayed collection of fabrics, wallpapers and trims all stacked in lucite boxes. And there is also tiny little nook of a kitchen, that is so amazing. Heavily veined book matched marble backsplash(and its black!), gray cabinetry and a black and white flag shaped marble flooring…the other side of the wall is covered in antiqued mirror. My fave.

One more look around:

(I wanted to snatch some of those objects de art right off that table and take them home with me. Of course, they are all solid marble or brass so they mostly weigh a billion pounds each.)

Even as I sat waiting in that orange conference room, I wasnt entirely sure that I was going to be able to meet Kelly… but to my surprise, she was there working and more than happy to meet us.  Apparently she has seen my blog, and get this: She and her staff have all seen my paintings and supposedly she loved them!

Also, you know I wore my neon orange DIY necklace and that of course when she complemented it I said- “I MADE IT!I MADE IT!” like a big baby… And you know I admitted to her that I am a borderline groupie- right? Yes, I actually used those words…  I know all this fawning is getting ridiculous, but seriously, the woman gave a complete face lift to interior design… and she is also totally down to earth and so gorgeous.

Also, she is excellent at posing while I look like I am wearing a Phillip Lim diaper:

But I gotta post a picture right? Because as Maison 21 said a few nights ago, if 5 bloggers meet at The Chateau and no one takes a picture: did it even really happen?

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  1. Found you through Christian’s blog ( Maison 21 )- this visit-report is just fa-bu-lo-so!! I’m completely taken with .. ermm EVERYTHING, hahaha!! I mean, the floors, the paintings, the chairs, the chandeliers, I die!! ( No I’m OK actually hahaha).What a fantastic post.Great pictures.
    Thanks for not being so overcome you could not take any pictures !!
    Have a fab-u-lo-so day.

  2. OMG so awesome! It’s like you met our (designer world) god!

  3. This is just all too much, dying over here (in a good way!) LA sounds FAB!!! Keep up the posts, living vicariously:)

  4. Amazing. Loved reading this. You are so damn lucky!! And wow, those stools are amazing. I think a flagship store is an awesome idea.

  5. That’s fantastic! I would have died to be in your purse.

  6. Marielle says:


  7. albertina says:

    did you notice she has a black and white vase similar to the one you did a DIY on?? where you painted on a west elm vase with a sharpie?? Cool :)

  8. What an amazing experience! I’m especially drooling over all those brass chairs and stools. Her vision is just extraordinary.

  9. OMGosh. Amazing..I dont even know where to begin. It is all SO very fabulous and you are so lucky to have met her and seen her awesome work space!


  10. WHAAAAT!?!?! I am so happy/jealous :) you got to meet her!!!! She is so gorgeous! Can I please be her! And the studio is amazing!!! xoxoox E&A

  11. This is just fabulous! Her studio is like design mecca! I am so glad that you got to meet her. Your work complements hers so much. I think your aesthetics are very similar. :) Isn’t it funny how excited we get over certain designers? I always say they are like my rock stars.

  12. WOW! What a phenomenal day. Seriously. I pored over your every word and pic. Would love to meet her, too. I agree with Paloma – the great ones are like Rock Stars!

  13. What she does can really never be imitated. The quality alone allows her to truly stand out, and she has an impeccable eye. Of course design junkies er’where adore her! It must have felt just beyond to be standing hip-to-hip with Kelly Wearstler. Good Lord, what an experience. You are lucky, girl!

  14. Diane says:

    WOW I envy you soooo much. How did this blessed event even happen? Did you call the studio and ask for a tour?

    • Nicole Cohen says:

      Lol. Someone from her office once emailed me and told me if I am ever in la I am welcome to come by. You better believe I saved that email!!!

  15. lordy. I want to BE her.

  16. Couldn’t help gobbling every sentence in this post — definitely interior design heaven — thank you for sharing in a way that made me feel like I was there with you :)

  17. Props Sketch!!!!!!!!

  18. What a beautiful studio. Dying from the gorgeousness.

  19. Katherine says:

    Totally great, but what were you thinking when you got dressed that day?!? Shorts, really?? A cropped tank top?!? You weren’t going to the beach, you were going to meet someone to someone’s office, that could help you with business. Don’t tell me you couldn’t so something a bit more hip yet still be casual. Think next time!!

    • Nicole Cohen says:

      FYI- it’s cool when I make fun of myself- not cool when you do it.

      This was about 30 minutes of my day- on my family vacation. Everything I brought for the entire trip was completely inappropriate.

      And also – they aren’t beach shorts. They are city shorts.
      And this is why I don’t post pictures of myself.

    • Katherine says:

      Not making fun of you at all! It is completely awesome that they emailed you, heard about you and you got to go there! Just trying to add some constructive criticism. You knew you were going to LA and had emailed her firm about visiting – not one hip outfit packed, not a big deal – make a pit stop to buy something better to wear. Whether it be a 10 minute meeting or 2 hour meeting – who cares – go run into any store nearby & buy something. And this is why I don’t comment on blogs – people only want to hear 100% positive comments, instead of of 80% positive.

  20. Thanks for asking for some lower priced items! Missoni is doing a line for Target, and it would be oh so amazing if she did as well! And, btw I thought your outfit was cute and actually quite compatible with Kelly’s design aesthetic!

  21. Wow!
    That’s like Disneyland for bloggers.
    Loved seeing her space – and nice of her to meet and greet and take a picture with you!

    Those floors are amazing; and I now feel validated that she likes orchids too.

  22. AHMAYZING!!! I’d seriously loose my marbles if I was in that studio and having my picture taken with KW- soooo much gorgeous it’s almost hard to take it all in- let along in person!!! So excited for you- fabulous!!

  23. debra h says:

    you are adorable whatever you wear. that is old programming that we need to “dress the part” i would love to be in your shoes wearing a plastic bag!! who gives a crap about your clothes. i think she missed the point and was projecting what her fantasy outfit would be if ever she had the good fortune to pose for a picture with kelly! you are a breath of fresh air!

    • Nicole Cohen says:

      Thanks! I was meeting someone who has sported crimped bangs on national tv so how bad could i possibly screw it up?

  24. Hmm, I’d like to comment on Katherine’s statement that bloggers only want 100% positive comments. It isn’t so much that as much as it is that bloggers don’t like reading comments that people wouldn’t ever make to someone’s face in real life. It’s much easier for people to make snarky/critical/negative comments on blogs because they never have to face that person in reality.

    And really, if you can’t say something nice, then you probably shouldn’t say anything at all.

    Nicole, I can’t believe you got to go to KW’s studio! I read this post several days back and I still keep thinking about it! Enjoy the rest of your trip!

  25. WOW!
    Thanks for being our eyes!
    So inspiring in every way.
    Wouldn’t you love to work there?!
    xo xo

  26. Katherine says:

    This is a comment I would have definitely made to a friend or a sister (or someone in a similar position). Again, I was not making fun of anyone at all and think it is wonderful to have been noticed by her team and invited to the office.

    However, I would not look like a tourist on vacation when I went to visit a person who I considered “gave a complete face lift to interior design.” And having known that this meeting would take place, I would have planned accordingly, regardless of why I was in LA.

    Lastly, the people that I know that are open constructive criticism, whether it be about what you wear or how you do something, are those people that will succeed that most in the activities that they pursue.

  27. Nicole Cohen says:

    Ok I’m over this whole thing. I’m done talking about it.

    I liked it. You didn’t. It’s ok.

  28. Katherine, give it a rest !!I’m sure you mean well but there comes a time you have to stop.This whole discussion is just making me laugh, hahaha!!

  29. Anonymous says:

    Katherine-you are totally right…an anne tAylor business-casual pants suit would have been perfectly hip and appropriate…

  30. Diane says:

    I actually think the whole outfit discussion is an insult to KELLY’s character! K.W. is not the judgemental type, she is open minded, accepting and laid back. No way would she ever think less of or look down on what someone was wearing. She does not give off that vibe at all! That’s one reason we all love her! Nicole felt comfortable and Kelly did too, you can see it in their faces.

  31. someday we’ll get a photo of that darn kitchenette…

    glad you enjoyed your day, nicole!


  32. oh sweet love, i am so jealy!!! were your eyeballs in total overdrive?!?! i would have passed out the second i walked into that entry.

    so glad you had a good time!

  33. Unbelievable! I cannot get over her amazing studio. What a dream come true!

  34. ummm that is like the best day ever!! I would have wanted to be locked up in that space over night so I could take it all in- how amazing and fun for you!!

    PS- you look hot, love the outfit!


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