When the doors are thrown open, the front courtyard becomes an extension of the living room. Fermob bistro chairs surround a vintage marble table.
LOS ANGELES – CA
The couple created their primary bathroom from scratch (it used to be a storage area) with with Circa
Lighting’s Keeley tall pivoting sconces, an Urban Electric Bit sconce, and a custom vanity designed by DISC Interiors, which features Waterworks Henry faucets and a vase by Adam Silverman. The Carlota mini rug is from Morrow Soft Goods and the striped towels are Mr. Merz. The bench was a vintage discovery.
Right, guests can rinse off after a swim in the outdoor shower, where a Mr. Merz towel is at the ready.
Glenn Lawson’s historic Los Angeles house
serves up endless inspiration for his brand’s American-made furniture designs—and vice versa.
A Magnolia Ceramics vase from Lawson-Fenning hangs out on the kitchen peninsula. In the nook around the corner, a coffee pot by Ceramica
Artistica Salitral stands at the ready.
Tucked under the window, a Makers console by Lawson-Fenning, above, holds a host of treasures, including Danny Kaplan table
lamp, Vasa Studio’s laminated cast acrylic objects, and Paige Stewart's Non-Dual Absorptive Form sculpture.
Swathed in Apex Grand wallpaper by Cole & Son, the powder room is one of the couple’s party tricks. “It’s the fun bathroom that people end up in,” Lawson says with a laugh. A custom sink by DISC
Interiors is tucked into the corner with a BDDW captain’s mirror.
“From Arts and Crafts at the beginning of the century to 1970s design to now, there is a
real integrity to the materials, and there’s nothing faux about anything we make.”
While Lawson certainly brings work home, the couple’s lifestyle
has also brought about new pieces for the brand. A custom credenza that Lawson built to hide their television was a precursor to a series of solid oak cabinets now sold at the store. The tufted floor cushions that act as additional seating when they have people over—“I’m Persian and my family is from Iran,” Dabestani explains. “I can think of many times when we’d sit on the floor and everyone was piled around. It’s nice to have something that feels very familiar albeit elevated”—inspired a similar line that has proved just as popular among customers.
Lawson-Fenning’s works are part of California’s long tradition of authentic craftsmanship. “From Arts and Crafts at the beginning
of the century to 1970s design to now, there is a real integrity to the materials, and there’s nothing faux about anything we make. Everything is very honest and clear,” explains Lawson. The couple’s “little oasis in the middle of Hollywood” is yet another addition
to that legacy.
And the way they live is always changing. The couple has enjoyed various Lawson-Fenning sofas over the years and uses a set of
built-ins painted a deep maroon to show off a rotating display of ceramics. Antiques pair seamlessly with these contemporary creations for a polished rawness, a love letter to Los Angeles and their home all in one. In the downstairs den, the company’s Carrillo chair—handcrafted in L.A., as are all the furnishings—faces a coffee table found at the Rose Bowl Flea Market in Pasadena and a custom pinstriped sectional. Over on the front patio, Lawson-Fenning x
CB2 teak lounge chairs with all-weather rattan seats hang out near a 1930s bronze and green marble dining table from an old Beverly Hills estate. The mix “could work inside or out and blurs that line,” notes Lawson.
Lawson’s close friends David John Dick and Krista Schrock of
DISC Interiors came on board to help the couple renovate the guest bathroom (this was actually the design duo’s very first project). Although the house’s palette—lots of warm, earthy tones, restrained but at the same time inviting—echoes Lawson and Dabestani’s dedication to open-air living, Dick and Schrock lobbied for a bit of vibrancy somewhere. Although petite (the sink is 27 inches at its widest), the remodeled space is kitted out in a bold geometric wallpaper in red, black, and cream. Despite being admittedly tentative about color, Lawson never worried about the final result: “I trust them. They know how I am and how I like to live, so it was just the best-case scenario for all of us.”
An added benefit: The living area is now quite literally the heart
of the home. On the other side of the space is the tiled courtyard.
“I can lie on the couch and watch TV, but it’s like I’m outside,” Lawson muses. “I can feel and hear nature; this is a sanctuary
from the city.”
When guests come over, they easily float from sunset cocktails to dinner to nightcaps by the fire. “We’re big entertainers but not
big cooks, so for us it was more about flow than it was fitting as many cabinets as possible,” notes Lawson.
But that didn’t mean kitchen cupboards weren’t a priority. Lawson enlisted design studio td[s] to build them out of ash wood, again looking to other homes in the neighborhood as a starting point. And just like his inspiration, these have held up beautifully over the years. Finding such talented makers is Lawson’s job, after all—Lawson-Fenning’s Melrose Avenue showroom is a trove of limited-edition tableware, vessels, lighting, and other delights, like sculptor Bradley Duncan’s wood peg pieces and FAM’s Portuguese glazed ceramic tables.
Even so, Lawson approached updating the place with sensitivity and patience, channeling the same California-cool spirit that has made Lawson-Fenning—the furniture brand and shop he cofounded a little more than 20 years ago with his design school buddy Grant Fenning—a
cult destination. (They also have a new collaboration
with CB2.) That’s clear from the get-go in the updated front courtyard, one of five distinct outdoor “rooms”
that Lawson brought to life with Sean Femrite of Environmental Design Studio. To keep the details as historically accurate as possible, they referenced nearby homes in the same style. This led to Saltillo tile, a ’20s-era fountain from a teardown, and lush native plants everywhere—a layout that is typical of Spanish Revivals. But the backyard swimming pool, with its raised edges perfect for sunbathing, is all West Coast.
Inside, Lawson took the advice of a good friend and created a blank canvas, removing the old carpet and painting everything white. That’s when his partner, Nima Dabestani, moved in and the real renovation began. The kitchen, small but charming, was one of their first projects. For a time, the former owner was producing food content there, so two islands were squeezed into a space that could barely fit one. Keen to have more room for hosting pals, Lawson and Dabestani started fresh, opening up the kitchen to the dining area and swapping out a picture window in the living room across the way for double doors that lead straight out to a terrace with views of Griffith Park and the observatory.
ith its black gate enshrouded in bougainvillea, the Spanish Revival home had always remained something of a mystery to Glenn Lawson. A longtime renter in Los Angeles’s Los Feliz neighborhood, he had passed the
property what seemed like a million times—he had even lived across the street at one point—but he had never truly seen it. Until it came up for sale. The chance to tour the listing felt like kismet.
And his intuition proved right—Lawson was greeted by a beautiful courtyard with a gnarled, 100-year-old olive tree. “I knew just walking in that this was definitely it,” he recalls.
But once Lawson moved in, more than a decade ago now, it was
a different story. The 1927-built house’s former owner, a fashion editor, had lived and worked there for 50 years, turning every
room into a photo-shoot set of sorts. “You couldn’t see any of the architecture; she covered up windows with walls, in the interest
of getting the shot, I guess,” he says. “It was a real trip.” The living space had deep red shag carpeting, blood-red walls
Photography by YOSHIHIRO MAKINO Words by CHERISH RUFUS Styling by JULIA STEVENS
Seahaven Teak Outdoor Sofa and Lounge Chair by Lawson-Fenning x CB2
Saved NY, $1,475
Domino Throw Blanket
Ojai Floor Cushion
Pollux Lamp by
At top, the west-facing back patio, outfitted with a Seahaven teak outdoor sofa and lounge chair from the Lawson-Fenning x CB2 collection, gets epic sunsets year-round. Above: Nima Dabestani and Glenn Lawson.
Below, Lawson-Fenning’s Isherwood sofa, Makers
armchair, and Normandie cocktail table are oriented around the living room’s hearth (“I’m a big fire builder,” says Dabestani). A Woven rug and stoneware pieces from the shop— Ceramicah’s Dune Vessel 02, Bradley Duncan’s Tunnel vessel, a Ben Medansky knot sculpture—further warm up the space. Above the sofa is a 1969 Adja Yunkers painting. The pendant lights are from Circa Lighting.
In the dining area, an Apparatus Arrow light fixture illuminates the Rough
dining table by Collection Particuliere and O&G Studio Aquinnah chairs. A Miles Huston drawing overlooks the scene. The Bradley Duncan bowl and Grain Design Pool rug are both from Lawson-Fenning.
The vintage Terrazza Landscape sofa by Ubald Klug for De Sede from Collected By, left, happened to be the perfect fit for an awkward corner.
Lawson-Fenning x CB2 Sentinel chairs frame
the outdoor fireplace with Bzippy’s Double Tier side table and a Ferm Living custom coffee table, available at Lawson-Fenning.
The kitchen cabinet color is a custom mix from General
Finishes. A gleaming Perrin & Rowe faucet catches the light from the window, but at night the glow comes from the Chapman & Myers Marine flush mounts from Circa Lighting. Hung on the wall, the Lostine cutting boards act as (functional) art. The wood fruit bowl is by De Jong & Co.
Its neighbor, the Estate bowl by Magnolia Ceramics, is sold at Lawson-Fenning.
Across the way, a custom Lawson-Fenning sofa, cozied
up with Ferm Living Clean cushions and a Saved NY
Domino throw, is paired with a vintage Paul Evans coffee
table. Ian McDonald’s Level vessel steals the show on
the built-in shelving.
Below, Chapman & Myers Cabinet Maker’s picture lights from Circa Lighting ensure his latest vignette of Lawson-Fenning finds—a Copper Composition by Bradley Duncan, Canoa Lab vessels, a Brutalist cube sculpture by Bill Tarr—gets its moment.The Carillo chair is by Lawson-Fenning; next to it is a Jonathan Cross planter.
In a guest room, above, visitors can curl up in a vintage leather and rattan lounge Chair by Gerard van den Berg from Amsterdam
Modern. Above is a Matt Connors painting. The teal closet doors are painted Midsummer Gale by Pratt & Lambert; the custom curtains are DISC Interiors. Underfoot is a Moroccan rug by Happy Tapis.
The primary bedroom, above, is cloaked in soothing neutrals, from
the soft gray Isherwood bed frame and striped Ceramicah Tera lamp (both sold at Lawson-Fenning) to the Parachute linen duvet cover and Julia throw blanket by Morrow Soft Goods. The Moroccan rug is from Happy Tapis.
Below, a Seahaven lounge chair by Lawson-Fenning x CB2 awaits poolside.
“From Arts and Crafts at the beginning of the century to 1970s design to now, there is a real integrity to the materials, and there’s nothing faux about anything we make.”
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