Functional design, SoCal inspiration, on growing a business, being half-dolphin and her own toughest client - talking it out with Amber Lewis.
Amber Lewis of Amber Interiors is one of the most sought after interior designers not only in Los Angeles, but with a client roster expanding across the U.S. Her half-million-plus Instagram followers are offered a daily glimpse into her SoCal-inspired breezy, contemporary style. After opening two brick and mortar stores in Calabasas, and the recently opened Pacific Palisades Shoppe, she's moved into designing a line of one-of-a-kind furniture. Not to mention, she's also in the process of renovating her own home. So, when does the woman sleep? She brought us into her bedroom to chat all things interior design, motherhood, and what comes next for this maverick designer.
What can we find on your nightstand? Give us the tour!
A pretty lamp with a dim bulb and a vase with greenery or flowers is a must. I also have a marble trivet that holds my ceramic hand with palo santo and a candle from my Essentials by Amber Lewis line (which is launching SO soon!!) It doubles as a ceramic mug and the bottom can be used to strike a match. The most important thing is keeping my nightstand simple and clean. Otherwise, it'll stress me out!
Speaking of nightstands, you've recently designed your own line of furniture. Who or what inspired you while creating these pieces?
Designing the 'Made by Shoppe' furniture line has been a dream come true. I've been designing for years, and one of the biggest struggles (as any designer can attest to) is finding the perfect piece of furniture for specific spaces. I decided it was time to do something about it and work with the best craftsman in Los Angeles to bring my designs to life and offer customizable pieces. The designs are inspired by the cool, laid back California aesthetic and the most important part to me is that each and every piece is made locally in LA and made to order. I'm not about mass production, so I'm thankful for everyone who orders from us, knowing it may be a longer lead time, but the quality will be incomparable.
You're currently in the process of renovating your Los Angeles home - when you're designing for yourself, how does the process differ?
Oh, it's 100,000,000 times harder! I am my toughest client and I can't make up my damn mind. We're finally breaking ground and I'm being forced to make decisions. My clients are muuuch more easy going than I am!!
Seeing so many different homes and projects come to life, what do you find is the most functional design element that you'll be incorporating into your space?
Our new home is going to have windows galore, because natural light is so important to me.
How much sleep would you say are you getting a night right now?
Sleep? What is sleep?! I'm notorious for having a hard time sleeping. Fun fact, I'm half dolphin, because did you know they never fully sleep?! Half their brain is on even when they're asleep! Same here.
We hear you're a big Netflix junkie - what are you watching?
Handmaid's Tale! It's really the most terrifying and potentially realistic show out there right now.
Has being a mother changed your relationship with decor?
It definitely has. Everything changes when you become a mother - in the best way possible. Gwynnie is probably one of my biggest inspirations - her carefree, laid back personality is pretty much my design aesthetic -- and she is my daily reminder of that! G's been involved in the design of our new home, too and let me tell ya, she may be my future boss! She's got a real eye.
Social media has hugely impacted your business - do you find it affects your personal life as well?
Yes and no. I have it to thank for being one the best tools in promoting my design work, and it also lets me interact and talk to so many more people than I would've been able to pre-social media. I'm truly very thankful for it. If you follow me on Instagram, you know that I try not to take it too seriously either. I'll never put on a front and you're always getting the real deal! So, no, I don't think it affects my personal life, other than it can take a lot of time, which I'd rather be spending with my family.
You've dominated the interior design scene, you've opened wildly successful stores in Los Angeles... what does evolution look like for you now personally and professionally?
First of all, THANK YOU! We are in this really exciting time now with so many exciting things in the works. My client roster is growing, which means my team is growing, hence our move into our brand new office next week. I have a book coming out in 2020, I'm launching a new blog called All Sorts Of at the end of this year, we have two brick-and-mortar Shoppes (and we're looking for our next space!!) - OH and because of all this growth, we're in the process of a full re-brand of Shoppe and Amber Interiors. I couldn't be happier with the direction we're moving in right now. Feeling beyond lucky and grateful!