Consort Design might be a familiar name to you, especially if you’re a left coaster. Founded by Mat Sanders and Brandon Quattrone, the cutting-edge interior design firm has been the talk of Tinsel Town, having done interiors for the likes of Jessica Alba, Jimmy Kimmel, Ben Mckenzie, Nina Dobrev, Shay Mitchell, and Sophia Bush. Mat and Brandon have partnered up with Marie Goble to curate and launch a new design destination on Melrose: a 2,000-square-foot space filled with eyeball excitement. Seriously, this place is like design heaven—sophisticated and edgy, classic yet cool. I can’t wait to get up there and check it out myself.
We talked to Mat and Brandon about their experience expanding into retail:
Why did you pick this city/neighborhood/storefront?
It made sense for us to open our first store in Los Angeles since our design services are based here and it’s also where most of our clients live. We love being based in LA: the first thing we noticed when we moved here from New York was how much more space people have to play with interior design and decor.
We chose to set up shop in a corner of LA that is on the cutting edge of design, with a nice mix of high and low shopping. Our neighborhood is full of cool, like-minded design friends, both well-established and on the verge, like JF Chen, Lawson-Fenning, and Galerie Half.
Where did you get the name for your design firm and the store?
Consort is an old word with a modern ring to it, and it can mean a friend or a partner, but with a bit of a mischievous undertone. Brandon and I partners in both life and business, but when we partner with our clients, we like to think of them as our consorts. That’s where the mischief comes in: sometimes we get them into trouble when they spend too much money and their husbands aren’t happy about it!
What’s the concept for the store?
The LA market is saturated with California rustic home furnishings, and we saw a white space for a shop that speaks to a young, fashion-forward design lover. We’ve taken a trend-driven approach to presenting a colorful space that’s equal parts playful and chic. We really wanted people to see themselves living in the space, so the store is fully decorated like different rooms of a house.
What’s one of the challenges you have had so far with opening the store?
There is so much great design shopping out there, particularly in LA, so it really forced us to dig far and wide for things nobody has seen before. We scoured the world and fell down some social media rabbit holes to find artists and makers that were new and next.
What other stores (if any) have you worked in before opening this one? What did you do before?
Mat: I have an editorial background, working as an editor at Apartment Therapy before working at Conde Nast to relaunch Domino Magazine and most recently as founding director of Domaine Home (now MyDomaine), where I am still an editor-at-large. Brandon’s background is in architecture, having worked in the interiors division at SHoP Architects, designing ground breaking projects, like Jay Z’s Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY and the Shopbop office headquarters in New York City. Brandon also worked on the design team at SoulCycle where he lead the West Coast expansion of ten new studios in the past three years. As far as retail goes, I actually find myself drawing on my experience working at the Gap when I was 16 years old. I hold our pillow wall to the same standards as the denim wall back in the day!
What’s your favorite item in the store right now?
The Babe Bed is our Memphis-inspired upholstered platform bed with two-tone feet. You can order it in any size, fabric or color, and we offer the feet in multiple finishes.
What is this season’s theme/inspiration/story?
This season’s theme is 1980s meets Italian modernism: splashes of painterly color mixed with refined brassy lighting and sleek, Jetsons-inspired furniture.
Are you carrying any new products and/or undiscovered gems you’re particularly excited about?
We’re obsessed with our modern accessories line from Fundamental Berlin, particularly our Push Bowls: they’re metallic bowls made in a geometric pattern that allows them to start flat and pop out into a bowl shape when you’re ready to entertain.
Does the store have its own line?
We currently offer a small selection of custom pieces that we’ve pulled from our portfolio and will be debuting our own custom collection early next year!
Any special events/exhibits/pop ups/collaborations planned for the next year?
Yes! We’re really excited to work with MVNGMNTS and are anxiously anticipating the arrival of their lighting, which will be exclusive to us in LA. We’re also working with artist Katie Kimmel on a show that mixes together her fun food art with our fabulous entertaining items for an inventive art “buffet”. And, of course, we’re working with Jaime Derringer on an exhibit of her works in 2016!
Do you have anything from the store in your own home?
Our custom stone trellis dining table in the store is the same one as in our home. It comes in any size, finish, and stone. We love it because it is stunning and steadfast—a really great place for gathering friends and socializing.
What’s one goal you have for the store’s future?
We have a lot of exciting projects in the works for digital growth, including floral delivery services and a subscription series, so stay tuned!
Visit Consort Design at 6918 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90038 or online.
Photos courtesy of Chris Patey.