Drinking About Design No. One | 467 | A Journalist, Designer and Architect Walk into a Bar feat John McClain and Erik Peterson

I’m Josh Cooperman, host and publisher of Convo By Design with something new for you. Dropping this on Friday, for a very good reason. You’re going to want to get a drink, we’ll wait…

 In the summer of 2020, the pandemic was in full effect. We were all locked in and trying to figure out what was going to happen next. You remember, you were doing the exact same thing. So, besides the day drinking and looking up old friends on Facebook, I was trying to learn new ways to be socially engaged. On at least one occasion, John McClain, Erik Peterson and I, met via Zoom to share a few pops and tell stories. One of things I did during that time was binge watch Drunk History, Dinner for Five and Anthony Bourdain’s Parts Unknown and No Reservations. Ground breaking shows that I never could find the time to watch before.

I became enamored with the skill by which Anthony Bourdain found a complete language revolving around found and association to society, how Jon Favreau could take 4 celebrities and craft a vibrant tableau out of each of the stories shared around a table. How Derek Waters told stories through the honest interpretations of historical events through the drunken lens of comics woven together as a tapestry featuring some of the funniest people working in Hollywood.

Then all of a sudden, it was over. Things opened up all at once and we all got busy. Really busy. I’ve been missing some of those evenings at the virtual bar, My virtual bar is called, Big D Energy. Big Design Energy for my Hip Hop loving friends. I wouldnt want you to get the wrong idea.

So I got an idea that I have been toying with for about 2 years and I finally got a chance to do it. And what better way to launch this than to reunite with John and Erik.

John McClain tells the story of William Haines I’m also sharing an interesting story you might find illuminating.

Erik Peterson is talking about Al Beadle. You have probably never heard of Al Beadle? Well, you will now. 

This is just 3 friends getting together at the local virtual watering hole, talking a little shit and telling stories. And, yes, this is very different than the episodes of the show you have heard in the past. We’re drinking and this episode carries the Explicit label. If you are sensitive to some salty language, you might want to delete this episode and move on to the next one. With that, I give you the first installment of Drinking About Design. 

This was the first installment of Drinking About Design featuring John McClain and Erik Peterson sharing stories about William Haines and Al Beadle. Two incredible talents, and good friends. Thank you both for doing this. For notes, drink recipe’s and further links to the stories and work you heard about here, check the show notes. Thanks for listening. Cheers. 

UpCycled, Repurposed, Local and Fabulous Specifying and Sourcing Local | 466 | WestEdge Wednesday No. One

I’m Josh Cooperman with Convo By Design and this is the first of a 10 part series called Convo By Design presents WestEdge Wednesday’s with conversation held at the WestEdge Design Fair in late November, 2023 from Barker Hanger in Santa Monica, California. 

This conversation features Moya O’Neill of Moya Living,Nancy Russert of Les Beaux Interiors and Twist Custom, Lenora Aguilar and Judy Davis of Vintage Junktion and moderated by Luxe Magazine’s Kelly Phillips Badal. This is a conversation called, Up-Cycled, Recycled, Repurposed, Local and Fabulous; Specifying and Sourcing Locally. The idea here is that design has entered a new era. One that is not defined by beauty or expense alone. We have entered an experiential phase of interior design, landscape design, exteriors and architecture. One that places a greater value on the experience and enjoyment of materiality, objects and usefulness of things as opposed to simply how expensive, luxurious or rare things happen to be. 

Thank you for listening to this episode of the podcast. For more, please make sure you are subscribing to the feed and check our IG often for new conversations. This chat was amazing and was held live on the stage designed by Marbe Designs and presented by BR Home.

For those not familiar …   The Banana Republic lifestyle brand portfolio is known for delivering timeless ready-to-wear styles, and BR Home signals the brand’s transformation into a leading destination for the modern explorer.  Expanding across living room, bedroom and dining room furniture as well as lighting, bedding, and home décor, BR Home showcases materials and craftsmanship from around the world, showcasing signature design details, warm, textural layers, natural materials and traditional production techniques.

For links to everything associated with this conversation, please check the podcast episode notes accessible from the “podcast” tab from Convo By Design. 

Thank you Moya, Judy, Lenora, Nancy and Kelly for your incredible insights, knowledge base and willingness to share your gifts. So, let’s get to it. Here’s Kelly Phillips Badal.

A Family Owned Company Putting Designers First for Over 65 Years | 465 | Mitch & Murray Altman + the 2023 Steam Shower Contest Winners

In October, I headed out for Round Rock, Texas to help celebrate ThermaSol’s 65th anniversary. A few thoughts before I share the details of this happening. If you have listened to the show for any amount of time over the past four years, you have heard me telling you about ThermaSol, they are the presenting partner of the podcast and I have had the good fortune to both tour the factory and spend some time with Mitch Altman, 3rd generation president and CEO of ThermaSol. On this most recent trip, I also had the opportunity to sit with Murray Altman, 2nd generation president and CEO, and Mitch’s father. 

I am a fan of ThermaSol for a number of reasons, not the least of which is that we have been working together for quite some time. I have seen how Mitch runs his company, how he treats his employees, his customers and the design talent who specify ThermaSol for their projects. I am also a fan of ThermaSol for the manner in which they make their products. With care, with skill and with both the best engineering practices as well as a policy of line testing every unit before it leaves the factory. No other company in the space that I know of provides the same level of pride in manufacturing and then stands by the product for life. It just doesn’t seem to exist elsewhere. But it does at ThermaSol, and you are about to hear why.

The story behind the design is what designers are looking for on behalf of their clients now and that is a great thing. Product quality should be rewarded, business should be awarded to companies who look out for their clients and customers. Offering the best in the industry should warrant designer and client loyalty, I believe this, full stop. If you haven’t yet looked into ThermaSol, this episode is for you. And if you are one of the premier designers who specify ThermaSol, I hope you enjoy this episode as well because it will give you a deeper and more nuanced narrative to share.

In this episode of the podcast, you are going to first hear my conversation with Mitch Altman, then you  will hear from Murray Altman. Following that, you are going to hear from two extraordinary creatives who were the recipients of ThermaSol’s design awards for their work in bathroom and steam shower design. Nadja Pentic of Knock Knock Design and Allison Cottet of House of Cottet created some amazing designs and I am really happy to share them with you. So let’s get to it, right after this.

So, there you go. The story comes full circle when you hear what the goal was at the company’s  founding 65 years ago and what it has become since. Innovators, creators and purveyors of the finest steam generators on the market today. Crafted with purpose and precision. Each tested on the line before it leaves the factory and comes with a lifetime warranty. Hopefully you understand why I am such a fan. Thank you Mitch, Murray, Allison and Nadja for sharing your story and exquisite work. Thank you to my partners and sponsors, ThermaSol, Design Hardware and Moya Living for your continued and unwavering support of the show and for the design community.

For more stories like these from the design community, please make sure you are subscribing to the podcast, so you receive new episodes automatically when they are published. That way, you never miss an episode. Convo By Design is available everywhere you find your favorite podcasts. Thanks for listening, until next week, be well and take today first. -CXD

The Gratitude You Deserve | 463 | Putting A Bow on 2023

I’m Josh Cooperman and this is Convo By Design. I have no interview to share with you today. No spectacular chat about design, no upcoming promotion, no BOOKLOOK, nope. Just two simple words followed by a few more to expand on the thought. Thank you. 

Thank you for taking the time to listen to the show, email me with guest suggestions and show ideas. Thank you for coming out to Convo By Design events, watching and liking the silly videos on IG, subscribing to the show and for supporting the sponsors of the show.

Speaking of which, thank you to my partners and sponsors, ThermaSol, Moya Living and Design Hardware. Your support of the show is what allows me and our editorial team to do this. Your support of the design and architecture community is special and I’m thankful for you.

Thank you to the guests who take the time to share a bit of themselves, their skill and that special something that has catapulted them to the levels at which we find them. Thank you to Soho Home in West Hollywood for serving as the location for our 10th anniversary celebration. 10 years. Cannot believe I have been doing this show for that long. Like any success, nobody does it alone. No one. We all have help form friends as well as the generosity of strangers. I have never met most of you who listen to the show. But you listen, and I’m thankful. I have met a number of listeners at events where I attend and speak. This year alone, Las Vegas Market, KBIS, West Hollywood Design District, ASID Orange County, the A&D Building in New York, Dallas Market Center and WestEdge Design Fair. To all my publicist friends, thank you for trusting me with your clients. To the brands I work with, thank you for trusting me with your messaging and content production. To the designers and architects with whom I have spoken this year and the previous years, thank you for making the time to tell your stories on the show. 

To all of you within the sound of my voice, thank you and I hope this holiday season is everything you want it to be. I hope you get the chance to slow down a bit, maybe even stop for a few days, spend time with friends and loved ones because at the end of the day, that’s what is really important. Well, I promised short. Happy holidays. Be well and until we meet back here, next year, take today first. – CXD

Change is Constant. Adapting to Your Creative Vision | 462 | Elisa Baran + A New BOOKLOOK feat. Homes By Byrd

I’m Josh Cooperman and this is Convo By Design and in this episode of the podcast, you are going to hear from designer, Elisa Baran. Baran and her eponymous bi-coastal firm are responsible for some interesting new looks. She has a very unique perspective on materiality, and the meaning of perfection in her work. Part of this includes application of wabi-sabi and brutalism in her otherwise softer and muted work for what is truly a unique new look, one that I believe will gain traction as Elisa garners more attention.

Before we get to my chat with Baran, it’s time for another BOOKLOOK segment of the show featuring; Homes By Byrd, The Art and Architecture of Robert Byrd and His Son Gary, a new offering by Chris Lukather showcasing the work of Robert Byrd and his son Gary, as the title suggests. This book is an amazingly fun trot down memory lane for people like me who grew up in SoCal and love architecture. Byrd rose to prominence at a time when one could perform the work of an architect without actually being a licensed architect. For those of you who listened to the tragic story of 1001 North Roxbury. In that situation, not Byrd, but Carlton L. Burgess designed a world-class home despite not being a licensed architect. 

I wonder if he had been licensed, if that might have dampened his creative approach to residential design? First Robert Byrd and then later, work by his son, Gary represent some of the most identifiable architecture of the San Fernando Valley. The whimsical approach to residential design with flagstone patios, leaded glass windows, fun and fanciful brickwork, shingles and forever views of pools, canyons, yards and open spaces. Low slung walls with rooflines that seemingly extend off cliffs. Turret-like chimneys, all lend to the feeling of the San Fernando Valley from the perspective of a young-Angeleno with a passion for architecture and design. I grew up in a home similar to this and if you are not from LA, though Byrd and his son, Gary did work in other states, this is a SoCal design story. But, the great part is, you don’t need to be from LA to appreciate the Byrds’ work. And it’s right her in this book from Lukather, to view, peruse, learn about and enjoy. The book is called, Homes By Byrd: The Art & Architecture of Robert Byrd and His Son Gary. Check the show notes for a link to buy.

As we explore Elisa Baran’s work, follow along here.

Thank you, Elisa. I am so happy that we finally met and had the opportunity to talk. Thank you for taking the time to share your story and thank you for the work you’re doing. Thank you to my partners and sponsors ThermaSol, Moya Living and Design Hardware for your partnership and support.And, thank you for taking the time out of your day to listen to the show. I hope this allows you to think about things in new ways. 

As we put a bow on 2023, there are a few things you should know. I have some really fun, productive and exciting new programming for you in 2024. It includes The Design Messengers, a brand new Monday episode that will cover issues, news, developments and ideas for you to grow your design business. I stopped covering the business of design a few years ago as there was a flood of new podcasts that were covering the business of home and design. That’s not what The Design Messengers is, instead of business tips, this is going to be a synopsized, high level view of new concepts, economic developments, technological advancements and other ideas that I think will help you launch into your week. These episodes will drop on select Mondays. Sometimes, every Monday, sometimes not. But, as long as you are subscribing to the podcast, you will receive them automatically in your feed. 

I will also be publishing a new series called WestEdge Wednesday. These will feature the conversations that took place live from the WestEdge Design Fair in Santa Monica, California. If you missed the show, you can hear all the talks as if you were there in person.

I also have two additional new series that will be published to the feed. Throwback Thursdays featuring some of your favorite design talent that have appeared on the show over the past 11 years and Drinking About Design, a Friday series where I get together virtually with fun and amazing design and architecture talent and we uncover stories from the world of design while getting a little loose. I think you are going to really love these and hey, if you are so inclined, plan on listening to the show on a Friday afternoon with a pop or two of your own. It’ll be a thing.

Please keep those emails coming. Convo by design @ outlook.com with show suggestions, guest ideas, just to say ‘hello’ .Thanks again, and until next week, be well and take today first. -CXD

Fearless and Faithful. Leaning In on Heritage and Trusting Her Talent | 461 | Rachel Moriarty

I’m Josh Cooperman and this is Convo By Design featuring a designer I have know about for a long time but only recently had the opportunity to speak with. She is an amazing creative with an incredible perspective on life and design.

It’s true that I have known about Rachel Moriarty for quite some time. Have you ever felt like you really know someone even though you never actually met? That is how this was for me and hen I finally saw her at the Feizy showroom in Las Vegas, I just introduced myself and following that brief introduction, you have the following conversation. I hope you enjoy it.

Thank you, Rachel. I am so happy that we finally met and had the opportunity to talk. Thank you for taking the time to share your story and thank you for the work you’re doing. Thank you to my partners and sponsors ThermaSol, Moya Living and Design Hardware for your partnership and support.And, thank you for taking the time out of your day to listen to the show. I hope this allows you to think about things in new ways. 

As we put a bow on 2023, there are a few things you should know. I have some really fun, productive and exciting new programming for you in 2024. It includes The Design Messengers, a brand new Monday episode that will cover issues, news, developments and ideas for you to grow your design business. I stopped covering the business of design a few years ago as there was a flood of new podcasts that were covering the business of home and design. That’s not what The Design Messengers is, instead of business tips, this is going to be a synopsized, high level view of new concepts, economic developments, technological advancements and other ideas that I think will help you launch into your week. These episodes will drop on select Mondays. Sometimes, every Monday, sometimes not. But, as long as you are subscribing to the podcast, you will receive them automatically in your feed. 

I will also be publishing a new series called WestEdge Wednesday. These will feature the conversations that took place live from the WestEdge Design Fair in Santa Monica, California. If you missed the show, you can hear all the talks as if you were there in person.

I also have two additional new series that will be published to the feed. Throwback Thursdays featuring some of your favorite design talent that have appeared on the show over the past 11 years and Drinking About Design, a Friday series where I get together virtually with fun and amazing design and architecture talent and we uncover stories from the world of design while getting a little loose. I think you are going to really love these and hey, if you are so inclined, plan on listening to the show on a Friday afternoon with a pop or two of your own. It’ll be a thing.

Please keep those emails coming. Convobydesign@outlook.com with show suggestions, guest ideas, just to say ‘hello’ .Thanks again, and until next week, be well and take today first. -CXD

An Oasis of Design Love When it’s Needed Most | 460 | The Oasis Alliance

I’m Josh Cooperman and this is Convo By Design with a story about giving back. On the show, over the past year, you have heard me talking about The Oasis Alliance, an organization co-designing the personal spaces of trauma survivors. Their vision, clearly stated….The Oasis Alliance envisions a world where every trauma survivor has a dignified place of refuge to refuel and recharge.

Designer Resources

ThermaSol – Redefining the modern shower experience. Episode 271 featuring Mitch Altman

Moya Living  Beautiful, durable powder coated kitchen, bath & outdoor kitchen cabinetry

Design Hardware – A stunning and vast collection of jewelry for the home!

The Oasis Alliance – Providing design to those in need.

The thing about trauma is you can’t just look at them and instinctively see their pain. You don’t know what people have been going through any more than someone else can look at you and know your pain, anxiety, discomfort. If you are a design enthusiast, as in, a fan, perhaps a client, but not in the business but have worked with a designer or architect, you know and have experienced the power of design. Many of the designers I speak with have experienced the gratitude of their clients, the recognition from media or on social platforms that showcase images of the work. But design is more meaningful than that.

Trauma is universal in that everyone experiences it at some point in their lives. For others, life went a direction then otherwise desired. Trauma became a constant and anyone who has experienced or loves someone who has been affected by traumatic events, you know, the scars are invisible and long lasting. A safe space is critical to renewal through recovery.

Design has the power to transform lives from within by providing spaces that have been ideated and crafted to foster wellness, inspire creativity or act as a safe-space, a refuge or even just a place to stop and experience peace and quiet. This conversation features Danielle Woodhouse-Johnson, founder and executive director of The Oasis Alliance. You are going to hear her story and the “why” behind this project, right after this.

Thank you, Danielle. Thank you for taking the time to share your story and thank you for the work you’re doing. Thank you to my partners and sponsors ThermaSol, Moya Living and Design Hardware for your partnership and support.And, thank you for taking the time out of your day to listen to the show. I hope this allows you to think about things in new ways. 

Please keep those emails coming. Convo by design @ Outlook.com with show suggestions, guest ideas, just to say ‘hello’ or from this episode, to find out how to be a part of The Oasis Alliance.Thanks again, and until next week, be well and take today first. -CXD

Luxury Design for the Home Away From Home | 458 | Vacation Home Design from Alder & Tweed

I’m Josh Cooperman and this is Convo By Design with another story about sublime design and in this episode, you are going to hear from Heather Humphrey, principal designer of Park City, Utah and Big Sky, Montana based interior and furniture design company, Alder & Tweed. 

Designer Resources

ThermaSol – Redefining the modern shower experience. Episode 271 featuring Mitch Altman

Moya Living  Beautiful, durable powder coated kitchen, bath & outdoor kitchen cabinetry

Design Hardware – A stunning and vast collection of jewelry for the home!

Heather and Reed Humphrey have created a firm that designs both distinct luxury homes and distinct luxury furnishings making them a unique brand. Heather and I talk about their projects, so per usual, please go to the show notes and click on the link to their projects if so inclined and follow along as Heather walks us through some of their more extraordinary work. Of note, Alder & Tweed, as a firm has been fashioned as “curators of the luxury home-away-from-home experience” and the branding is spot on. And by specializing in the second home market, they are working in some of the worlds most amazing locations. And you are going to hear the whole story, right after this.

Thank you, Heather for the time. Exceptional work. Thank you for taking me on this journey through the Rockies and beyond.

Thank you to my partners and sponsors ThermaSol, Moya Living and Design Hardware for your partnership and support. And, thank you for taking the time out of your day to listen to the show. I hope this allows you to think about things in new ways. 

Please keep those emails coming. Convo by design @ outlook.com with show suggestions, guest ideas or just to say ‘hello’, I love hearing from you. Thanks again, and until next week, be well and take today first. -CXD

Reflecting on Summer Vibes and 4 Incredible Designers | 456 | Design Leadership LIVE from Design Hardware featuring; Lorena Pulichino, Jeanne Chung, Stephanie Hatten and Kim Colwell

I’m Josh Cooperman and this is Convo By Design. This Summer, I spent some time back in LA visiting with some very talented designers and I wanted to share some of those conversations with you. 

But first, you should know that if you are in LA and listening to this episode the week it was released, November 14th, the WestEdge Design Fair is happening RIGHT NOW and you should come down to Barker Hangar in Santa Monica and take in some of the incredible conversation being produced by yours truly. These are highly curated conversations that were crafted specifically for those in the trade as well as those who love design. So check out @ConvoXDesign with an “X” on IG and message me for more details and tickets. If I have any left, they’re yours for the asking. We’ll be right back with this weeks episode, right after this.

Designer Resources

ThermaSol – Redefining the modern shower experience. Episode 271 featuring Mitch Altman

Moya Living  Beautiful, durable powder coated kitchen, bath & outdoor kitchen cabinetry

Design Hardware – A stunning and vast collection of jewelry for the home!

Thank you Stephanie, Kim, Lorena and Jeanne for your time, loved this. Thank you to Michele Solomons and everyone at Design Hardware for making this space available for having these important conversations. Thank you to my partners and sponsors ThermaSol, Moya Living and Design Hardware for your continued support of both Convo By Design and the design community. A side note, the sponsors and partners you hear on CXD are more than companies with a product, each of the partners I work with have been fully vetted, they are owned and operated by people who love what they do and have dedicated themselves to serving the design community and customers by providing the best products and services available. If you would like to know why I am so proud to have them part of Convo By Design, email me at convobydesign@outlook or on IG @convoxdesign with an “X”. I would be happy to share my experience. Please make sure you are also reaching out with show ideas and guests you would like to hear on the podcast. I love hearing them and it has given me the chance to meet new creatives not already on my radar, so thank you. Thank you for taking the time to listening to the show and share in the experience, until next week, be well and take today first. – CXD

Design Justice: How this Amazing Creative Traded A Law Career for Design, And Has Not Looked Back | 455 | Kevin Murphy

I’m Josh Cooperman and this is Convo By Design with a visit this week, and in keeping to our NorthEast swing, this is Kevie Murphy of K.A. Murphy Interiors. A Manhasset, NY based firm led by a super-driven creative in Kevie herself. Love this story and I think you will too.

Designer Resources

ThermaSol – Redefining the modern shower experience. Episode 271 featuring Mitch Altman

Moya Living  Beautiful, durable powder coated kitchen, bath & outdoor kitchen cabinetry

Design Hardware – A stunning and vast collection of jewelry for the home!

Follow along and check out her projects here:

Kevie was later than many to the design industry because she first attended Boston University, became an attorney and later a partner at a New York City firm.  She and her husband bought a house and she realized she needed some help. Now, you have one logical option, right? Yes, hire a designer. Nope. Kevie realized her love for design and enrolled at the New York School of Interior Design. Exactly. I’ll let Kevie tell the story, but this is one of those incredibly interesting creatives who started in a very different place and is now crafting and creating some exquisite work. And you’ll hear all about it, right after this.

Thank you Kevie, incredible story, love the work. Thank you to my partners and sponsors ThermaSol, Moya Living and Design Hardware for your continued support of both Convo By Design and the design community. A side note, the sponsors and partners you hear on CXD are more than companies with a product, each of the partners I work with have been fully vetted, they are owned and operated by people who love what they do and have dedicated themselves to serving the design community and customers by providing the best products and services available. If you would like to know why I am so proud to have them part of Convo By Design, email me at convobydesign@outlook or on IG @convoxdesign with an “X”. I would be happy to share my experience. Please make sure you are also reaching out with show ideas and guests you would like to hear on the podcast. I love hearing them and it has given me the chance to meet new creatives not already on my radar, so thank you. Thank you for taking the time to listening to the show and share in the experience, until next week, be well and take today first. – CXD