Drawing from her passion for fashion, Angels-based designer Jaqui Seerman approaches her projects with style, often combining bold colors, textures and one-of-a-kind art to make a bold statement in the room.
“Fashion and interior design are very similar.” Ms Sirman told Mansion Global. The designer explains how every aspect of fashion, from fabrics to accessories, layering to movement and attention to detail, affects the whole, telling a story and creating a mood.
Raised in a design-oriented family––her father ran his own residential construction company and her mother used her “natural flair for interiors” to decorate their home–– Ms. Serman spent much of her youth traveling both coasts. She cut her teeth at the “forever talented” Waldo Fernandez, then moved on to Madeleine Stewart & Associates and finally Martin Lawrence Bullard before launching her own iconic design firm in 2014.
MoreHomeowners want magic, joy and serenity in their outdoor spaces, says the landscape architect
But for Mrs. Serman, interior design has become a way of life until she forgets it.
“I had a natural affinity for design since childhood, and fortunately, when they plotted my path in my early twenties, they gently persuaded me to pursue this passion,” she says of her parents’ upbringing in design. “I’m glad they found a career in such a crazy, challenging and creative industry.”
In addition to her thoughts on the intersection of fashion and interior design, Mansion Global spoke with Ms. Serman about creating beautiful and livable homes, defining one’s design style, and how living in West Hollywood influences her work.
MoreThe luxury customers of the future will always be on the go, says the Caribbean architect.
Mansion Global: They compare fashion with interiors. Can you explain a little more how it translates?
Jaqui Seerman: There is a lot of common ground. Any garment or ensemble should be proportional to the body or the shape of the individual wearing it, so you can bring that back into the architecture. A high waistline looks amazing on some people, and not on others. You should pay attention to the body. You should look at the architecture of the house and model your aesthetic on what looks best in that environment.
The ever-evolving beauty of fashion is a constant influence whether one realizes it or not. You want to have the same fresh ingredients in the interior.
MG: When you use the word “fresh” do you mean designing new furniture and accessories?
JS: It doesn’t have to be limited to what’s current. Great looks are timeless, and that’s the goal with interiors. You can make a cool Halston today, and it will look as effortlessly beautiful as when it was first designed – the way it drapes and the perfection of execution. Ultimately, the goal is to age gracefully.
MG: What’s the secret to maintaining that gorgeous look while still living comfortably?
JS: Think of a classic outfit: a cute, sleek pulled-back bun and simple jewelry with a white button-down. You can start out the day clean and your hair will bounce back perfectly, but as the day progresses and you start running around, it will wear down a bit. But it still looks beautiful.
In the interior, you create a room that looks incredible when assembled, but as the day progresses and you kick your shoes, pull the pillows, open the book, drink your tea and everything is there, the beauty is still there. It still looks well put together and well maintained after it has lived.
MS: Any words of advice for someone who has yet to articulate their design style? How do you get there?
JS: Everyone is looking at the finished product. They rush into the fun room.
Instead of imposing deadlines on yourself, let it evolve over time and collect pieces you love. Since everything is not bought from one place, the space looks well organized and organic. It will have personal value because you brought these special things. Take time and make it happen. Explore what feels right for you. Have a nice trip. If you do it right, you don’t have to do it again.
MoreAccording to the real estate developer, luxury boils down to precision and coordination.
MS: Do you have any pet peeves related to design aesthetics?
JS: In general, I’m not a big fan of cabinets that don’t run to the ceiling. There is a situation when there is always a reason to not go to the roof. And in that case, I can support the cause. But in most cases, take the cabinets to the ceiling. Bring the height of the room, so it looks custom and fleshy and beautiful.
MG: How has living in West Hollywood or “WeHo” influenced your design approach and style?
JS: I am influenced not only by the city, area or beach I live in, but by the individuals who choose to live here. Many are creative and risk takers by nature. They are not afraid to push the envelope. Because of this, not only are the furniture, cushions, area rugs and curtains ready-turned, but the closets are also stocked and organized, and I can cover a complete interior. It’s completely done. There are limited places in the world where society goes like that. Los Angeles, Southern California, especially West Hollywood, is not risk-averse. They are willing to take a chance and see what happens. That was a fun experience doing the interiors.
More‘It’s in the details of luxury,’ says accommodation and hospitality manager X
MG: Where do you shop for unique items and collectibles in Los Angeles?
JS: All Angelenos in my industry have been inspired by JF Chen. They have collected the most amazing furniture. It’s fun to see a chair that doesn’t look like a chair, with inspiring and diverse architectural forms.
MG: How would you define luxury?
JS: It’s the simple things that are special. Fresh cut flowers, large floral arrangements, incredible dinner parties with fine china with sentimental value. Have pieces in your home that have sentimental value, like an oil painting your grandmother made or a beautiful mohair quilt that you use and cherish. The experience of being in a neighborhood — it’s more about finding home and guests, it’s about showing what’s important to you. We’re all used to the nicer linens, but sometimes people like a crisp cotton pad. It’s personal. It is prepared for you. If that’s exactly what you’re after, it’s a very luxurious experience.
This interview has been edited for length and clarity.
Write to date list