One of the best parts of having a sassy home decor site is discovering interior designers and artists with impeccable style, inspiring ideas and oodles of talent. This week I had the pleasure of interviewing Laura Martin Bovard, an Oakland based designer who’s passion for art and design is evident in her exquisite work.
After frequent moves during her childhood Laura learned quickly the importance of creating a home with ease. Add a chic influential mentor, a found love of food and wine and European travel, and we see the key experiences that shaped Laura’s core values as an interior designer. A true believer in connection, Laura’s work displays beauty, comfort and playfulness.
Let’s start at the beginning.
What is your design philosophy?
That design should be authentic, real, beautiful and in general create a space that reflects who the inhabitants are and who they are becoming. In essence to create spaces that are energy rich.
How would you describe your style?
A warm approach to modern, classic, elegant, timeless not time-stamped.
Does being a designer in Northern California influence your style?
In a huge way…the access to nature and whole foods, so many artists and creative people in a centralized area creates an abundance of opportunity to deliver personal, authentic spaces with real art, quality finishes, textures and beauty just like the landscape of the Bay Area.
What’s the most fulfilling part of your job?
Building relationships and connections with my clients, the satisfying feeling of before and after pictures.
Do you have any home decor rules?
I believe that our environments should be filled with natural materials. Things like fire retardant and other chemicals that sneak in through materials are unseen but I think we can feel them without being conscious of it. A healthy environment with toxin free materials like wool, no VOC paints and things made by hand can change the quality and feeling tone in a space dramatically. My rule is wait and invest in realness whatever that means to you.
What inspires you artistically?
Being connected to the Divine Source. When I take the time to get quiet and listen to my heart I can create so much more effortlessly which is why our office space is filled with fun, playful energy. The combination of quiet time mixed with playfulness and energizing music enriches the energy field and then I can go to town on creating design effortlessly. When I’m drained and tired I don’t even bother trying, I know I will just spin my wheels.
What are you loving right now in design?
We are working on a project right now with a client who loves jewel tones. We have fallen in love with teal, purple and black. Mixed with grays and taupes the palettes feel rich, dense and luxurious. I also love how Etsy and sites like Pinterest are allowing more expression of individual artists and people seem to be called to hand made, quality things rather than the mass produced consumption of recent times.
What is your most prized home decor item?
It is a simple item. A handmade ceramic jar with a lid, a small crock really. The weight of it and the glaze is perfect, I love the texture and the functionality of it. It sits on my coffee table and when I look at it I feel grounded and it reminds me of the trip I got it on, the first time I went to Chicago and my friend and I wandered onto an outdoor art show and I met the potter whose booth was filled pottery that had soul. I was a potter in college and love things made with clay.
Any new designers we should keep our eyes on?
Rosemary Hallgarten is well known for her carpets but her new textiles are divine. She uses Alpaca in the most refined way. She is a genius with texture. Layering textures is such an authentic, sexy way to create beauty.
Thank you Laura Martin Bovard for sharing your philosophy and making beautiful spaces special homes for connecting, loving and living. A well designed room can be stunning but it’s not energy rich without its inhabitants. For more information on Laura and her superstar team check out her website.