Tag Archives: los angeles

2020 Pasadena Showcase House | 296 | Part Four of a Four Part Series



This is Convo By Design with a four-part special from one of my favorite showcase projects, the Pasadena Showcase House for the Arts presented in a whole new way. Of course, because it’s 2020..

I have put together a four-part special about the Pasadena Showcase House for the Arts and this year’s presentation is vastly different from what you have become used to. This is a combination of live and phone recorded interviews with the designers from this year’s showcase. Live, yes, I did make the journey to the house, and while I saw it, I did not see every room, I spent the majority of my time by the pool, sadly working because like you, I could use a pool day. I didn’t get to really dig into every room as I usually do, but I did want you to hear from the designers of this year’s home and I am turning this into four episodes.

This is episode 4 featuring; Jhoiey Ramirez & Jeanne Chung

This was so much fun, I love design houses and I know you do too. This year, Pasadena Showcase is going virtual and if you want to see their presentation, please go to Pasadena showcase dot org for virtual tour tickets and information.

Thank you Walker Zanger for your continued support of the show and thank you for listening, were it not for you, there would be no Convo By Design. Please make sure you are subscribed so you don’t miss a single episode. You can find Convo By Design everywhere you get your favorite podcasts. You can also ask your smart device to play Convo By Design, and it will. If you want to continue the conversation, you can find us on Instagram @ConvoXDesign, with and “X”. Be well, and until next week…Keep creating.


2020 Pasadena Showcase House | 294 | Part Two of a Four Part Series



This is Convo By Design with a four-part special from one of my favorite showcase projects, the Pasadena Showcase House for the Arts presented in a whole new way. Of course, because it’s 2020.

I have put together a four-part special about the Pasadena Showcase House for the Arts and this year’s presentation is vastly different from what you have become used to. This is a combination of live and phone recorded interviews with the designers from this year’s showcase. Live, yes, I did make the journey to the house, and while I saw it, I did not see every room, I spent the majority of my time by the pool, sadly working because like you, I could use a pool day. I didn’t get to really dig into every room as I usually do, but I did want you to hear from the designers of this year’s home and I am turning this into four episodes. This episode features:

Christine Jahan, Barbie Palomino, Laura Muller, and Susan Sawasy.

There you go, check them out. Back to coverage from the Pasadena Showcase House for the Arts. This was so much fun, I love design houses and I know you do too. This year, Pasadena Showcase is going virtual and if you want to see their presentation, please go to Pasadena showcase dot org for virtual tour tickets and information.

Thank you Walker Zanger for your continued support of the show and thank you for listening, were it not for you, there would be no Convo By Design. Please make sure you are subscribed so you don’t miss a single episode. You can find Convo By Design everywhere you get your favorite podcasts. You can also ask your smart device to play Convo By Design, and it will. If you want to continue the conversation, you can find us on Instagram @ConvoXDesign, with and “X”. Be well, and until next week…Keep creating.


2020 Pasadena Showcase House | 293 | Part One of a Four Part Series



This is Convo By Design with a four-part special from one of my favorite showcase projects, the Pasadena Showcase House for the Arts presented in a whole new way. Of course, because it’s 2020.

I have put together a four-part special about the Pasadena Showcase House for the Arts and this year’s presentation is vastly different from what you have become used to. This is a combination of live and phone recorded interviews with the designers from this year’s showcase. Live, yes, I did make the journey to the house, and while I saw it, I did not see every room, I spent the majority of my time by the pool, sadly working because like you, I could use a pool day. I didn’t get to really dig into every room as I usually do, but I did want you to hear from the designers of this year’s home and I am turning this into four episodes. This episode features:

Janinie Gregory, Stephanie Hatten, Chad Morrell from California Waterscapes and Greg Parker

There you go, check them out. Back to coverage from the Pasadena Showcase House for the Arts. This was so much fun, I love design houses and I know you do too. This year, Pasadena Showcase is going virtual and if you want to see their presentation, please go to Pasadena showcase dot org for virtual tour tickets and information.

Thank you Walker Zanger for your continued support of the show and thank you for listening, were it not for you, there would be no Convo By Design. Please make sure you are subscribed so you don’t miss a single episode. You can find Convo By Design everywhere you get your favorite podcasts. You can also ask your smart device to play Convo By Design, and it will. If you want to continue the conversation, you can find us on Instagram @ConvoXDesign, with and “X”. Be well, and until next week…Keep creating.


Caitlin Murray of Black Lacquer Design | 292 | A Fresh Perspective



Caitlin Murray is the founder and creative director of Black Lacquer Design. Murray cut her teeth in the industry working for high profile firms, House of Honey and MASHstudios. So, when the time came for her to hang her shingle, she did it with confidence knowing that she did the work and knows her craft. Every week we meet and you hear the story of another creative doing amazing work. In these conversations, we talk about the work, but most importantly, we talk about the journey. Every creative has their own story because we all walk our own path. If we’re lucky, we don’t walk it alone. We have people who influence us along the way, who guide us, who provide inspiration. Yes, we talk about the work on this podcast because it is important, but even more important is the journey. I love bringing you these stories. Here is another that I think you will appreciate with Black Lacquer founder, Caitlin Murray.

If you enjoy the podcast, and I hope you do, please subscribe to the show everywhere you find your favorite podcasts. You can also follow along online, Convo By Design dot com and on Instagram @ ConvoXDesign, with an “x”.

Thank you, Caitlin, loved this. Thank you Walker Zanger for your continued support and thank you for listening.

Please make sure you are subscribed so you don’t miss a single episode. You can find Convo By Design everywhere you get your favorite podcasts. You can also ask your smart device to play Convo By Design, and it will. If you want to continue the conversation, you can find us on Instagram @ConvoXDesign, with and “X”. Be well, and until next week…Keep creating.


Imagine A World WITHOUT Frank Lloyd Wright | 291 | A Conversation That Would Thoroughly Annoy Him



A conversation of his work and influence in the abstract would, no doubt perk up the prickly side of Frank Lloyd Wright who never seemed to pass on an opportunity to share his thoughts regardless of how they might be perceived. The cantankerous side of Frank Lloyd Wright was a gift second only to his work. It made things so much more interesting.

Around the time I was writing panel concepts for the Convo By Design Programming Lounge at WestEdge in 2019, I saw a movie that posed the question, what would the world be like if only one person remembered the Beatles… That made me think, what was Frank Lloyd Wright’s impact beyond the work itself? That is exactly what was pondered and explored by this incredible panel. Featuring Margaret Bach of Margaret Bach Design, Carlo Caccavale, Executive Director at American Institute of Architects, David Coffey, Director of The Design Thinking Academy, and Michael Lehrer of Lehrer Architects. This group of luminaries is led by moderator and educator, Carol Bishop who masterfully navigates this idea in a conversation called Modern World, Life Without Frank Lloyd Wright.

Wow, okay. This was a great chat, thank you, Margaret, Carlo, David, and Michael. Thank you Carol for navigating this strange idea and leading this excellent conversation. Thank you Walker Zanger  for your continued support and thank you for listening.

Please make sure you are subscribed so you don’t miss a single episode. You can find Convo By Design everywhere you get your favorite podcasts. You can also ask your smart device to play Convo By Design, and it will. If you want to continue the conversation, you can find us on Instagram @ConvoXDesign, with and “X”. Be well, and until next week…Keep creating.


Saying Goodbye to a SoCal Design Luminary | 290 | Jeff Sampson



Jeff Sampson was the Vice President of Marketing at the Pacific Design Center, a role he held since the later part of 2013. One of Jeff’s most notable contributions to our design community was to refocus PDC efforts of the annual West Week and Fall Market events. He did this through creative programming and a non-partisan approach to media partners. If you were a strong partner, it didn’t matter how long you were around. Jeff and I met in 2014, shortly after I started Convo By Design. I approached Jeff with an idea. I wanted to be a media partner that would record and feature Pacific Design Center programming to the trade. The podcast was brand new. The Pacific Design Center would recognize Convo By Design as a media partner which provided me a wonderful opportunity to introduce the idea of podcasting and on-demand audio to the SoCal design community. Jeff said ‘yes’, he didn’t have to do that. But he did, because that is the kind of person Jeff was. The type of person who would listen to you if you had an idea, because he was curious and because he cared. He was an excellent marketer, too. 7 years ago, not many in the trade knew what a podcast was, but Jeff recognized that he could get his remarkable programs out to more of the people, for whom he was working hard to serve, the trade partners and showrooms of the Pacific Design Center in particular and the design community as a whole would benefit.

Jeff Sampson had a 20 year career in marketing with the past 6 at the PDC. He had hundreds of friends and admirers in the design community. Jeff also had a life outside of design, where many more will miss him. They will miss him around the holidays, when Jeff would slow down and spend time with family and friends, at happy hour, which was kind of like an any-time holiday.

Jeff loved Doris Day and also had an affinity for Rhoda and Phyllis in TV and in real life, recognizing and appreciating all their imperfections. He loved traveling and sharing his experiences. He loved Paris “when it drizzles”, and “when it sizzles.” Jeff had style, he had grace and he took his exit too soon.

I wanted to honor Jeff the best way I know how, and that would be through sharing him in his own words. This is a conversation I had with Jeff in 2015. He was episode 15 of Convo By Design which means this episode was recorded and aired within months of starting the podcast. We met at his office in the PDC. This is Jeff Sampson.

That was my conversation with Jeff Sampson from 2015. Jeff was gracious with his time and his partnership. He was a good friend and amazing supporter of the Southern California design community. To those of you who knew Jeff well and called him a friend, I’m so sorry for your loss. I want to thank Jeff for his time and his incredible contribution to Convo By Design, I also want to thank you for listening. You make this podcast possible and it is comforting to know that we all share in the work and we can also share the grief at times like these. Please make sure you are subscribed so you don’t miss an episode and if you want to continue this conversation, you can find us on Instagram @ConvoXDesign, with and “X”. Be well, and until next week…Keep creating.


Ross Vincent | 287 | Attaining Balance of Sophisticated and Approachable Design



Interior design is so much more than an accumulation of things arranged in a pleasing way. Interior design, done right, means understanding the needs of the client and then taking those desires, both seen and unseen, and crafting an environment that meets those needs. Ross Vincent is a rising design star that is already highly accomplished. His work is clean and elegant, modern, and comfortable.

You are going to hear Ross talk about the state of design here in Southern California as well as the influences that he brought with him from his home city of Seattle, Wa. This conversation also turns to design in the fly-over states and locations that are not normally included in the conversation about significant design and architecture. I love that, I think you will, too. This is interior designer, Ross Vincent.

Ross. I really enjoyed our chat. Thank you for taking the time. I also must note that this conversation was recorded live and in person. It seems like a lifetime ago since I was able to do this and I can’t wait to do it again. Thank you, Walker Zanger and Thermasol for your continued support. And, thank you for listening to the show. Please make sure you are subscribed so you don’t miss a single episode. You can find Convo By Design everywhere you get your favorite podcasts. You can also ask your smart device to play Convo By Design, and it will. If you want to continue the conversation, you can find us on Instagram @ConvoXDesign, with and “X”. Be well, and until next week…Keep creating.


The Future of Minimal Modern | 285 | Minarc



This is Erla Ingjaldsdottir and Tryggvi Thorsteinsson of Minarc. The duo founded Minarc, a Santa Monica based architecture firm that is producing ground-breaking minimalist, modern design that is both stunning to look at and stripped down to the very essence of the structure itself. Materials and lack of materials play a huge role in the finished product. The absence of paint, carpet, tile, and a focus on letting the included materials speak a different dialect in the language of architecture. And because architecture is a language all its own, Minarc’s work allows the design to speak for itself using a “don’t tell me, show me” approach.

This is a new segment of the show called A moment of Zen presented by Thermasol, it’s a focus on wellness tips for a healthy mind, body, and soul. This topic has been coming up more and more lately and while this is certainly not a new topic, more clients have been asking for health and wellness worked into their designs. I started asking around and there are some really interesting ideas taking shape.

As you hear about modern minimalist design, peaceful living needs to be a part of that conversation and if 2020 has taught us anything, it’s that the idea of home is very different now than it was at the start of the year. Not only are we spending more time at home but that time is being spent doing more things. Of those, the idea of relaxation in a spa-like environment has been lost to many. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Have you considered incorporating steam showers into your designs? If not, some things to consider… Steam showers are not just for resorts, spas and gyms. You know this, but what you might not be aware of is that steam showers offer additional opportunities like aromatherapy.

Aromatherapy is the introduction of essential oils into the steam itself which is said to have both healing properties as well as adding to a relaxing experience. Options include jasmine, eucalyptus, rose, lavender, chamomile all offering their own “essence” to the experience. While they have not been studied for medical efficacy, and it is important to get any treatments cleared by a medical professional in advance… this is the legal disclaimer portion of this segment. This is something that can add to the experience of a shower making it so much more than just a cleaning tool. A steam shower conversion is a relatively simple construction upgrade and once that is done, incorporating essential oils into the steam is even easier.

I read an article in New York Magazine online from February 16th, 2017. It was called, The Strategist, What’s the Deal with Essential oils? By Mike Albo. Albo spoke with Dr. Pamela Dalton from the Monell Center in Philadelphia. Dalton, an olfactory-research scientist spoke about the value of essential oils. Dr. Dalton recommends “encourages their use” and notes that, in. Dalton notes “extremely rare’’ creations in personal research. There are a number of possible reasons for this but at the end of the day, we are all looking for ways to increase the sense of well being achieved through relaxation and aromatherapy is an option worth exploring.  

These ideas are provided for you to consider exploring in your future projects. Zen is a state of mind, designing for wellness is more important now than ever before. Thermasol is a brand created over 60 years ago to incorporate steam showers and sauna into any project you can design. They have also integrated cutting edge technology into their products allowing you to set individual profiles for every user. Set temperature, chromotherapy, aromatherapy, listen to music, or watch your favorite shows while taking a relaxing steam shower. You will be amazed at just how easy it is to specify Thermasol products for every project you can design. Check them out online at Thermasol dot com.


Buster + Punch | 283 | Massimo Buster Minale



Buster + Punch is the luxury home fashion label born out of a love of home, fashion, metalwork, and motorcycles. Minale is part fashion designer, craft metalworker, and mad scientist. Buster + Punch is one of the most impactful new home design brands for a number of reasons, not the least of which is an artistic approach to the work that blends machine worked industrial lines and fine art. This is a fearless luxury home brand that demands attention yet works flawlessly with so many different styles of design and architecture. Full disclosure, I have Buster + Punch pieces in my home. My absolute favorite is the light bulbs installed in a suspended Jamie young piece hanging in our kitchen. I look at this every day and it makes me happy. So, I’m a fan off the bat and I think you will be as well after hearing about Buster + Punch from Massimo himself. This is Massimo Buster Minale, founder of Buster + Punch.

Thank you, Massimo. Great chat, I’m sorry we won’t see each other at WestEdge this year, but I am counting the days until 2021. Thank you Walker Zanger for your support for Convo Boy Design and THANK YOU for listening. Were it not for you, there would be no Convo By Design. Speaking of which, make sure you are subscribing to the show everywhere you find your favorite podcasts. You can also find everything show related at ConvoBy Design dot com. Be well and until next week, keep creating.


Stacy Garcia | 281 | Partnerships, Licensing and Global Design



Stacy Garcia is a global licensing and design company led by someone who has one foot firmly planted in design and the other on the business side of things. Stacy is a powerful voice in the business and she has done something truly amazing with her business. While she calls herself a creator and artist first, she has used the licensing arenas to structure her core business on hospitality and still create a multi-line business structure. 

For those designers and architects listening, this will give you some quantifiable takeaways as it relates to creative design and hospitality. But, you’re also going to get some excellent business strategies and actionable ideas that will help you structure your business and ultimately increase your earning potential through licensing opportunities.

In this episode, you will hear Stacy define the structure of a successful partnership. These thoughts include; One-offs, multi-year deals, single-piece deals, or the full collection and non-exclusive licensing deals. Stacy also talks about what happens when someone steals your designs and products. DO you protect your intellectual property or not because if you start a line, your ideas will get stolen. 

You are also going to hear about creating and distributing design content to build community, promote your platform, and make new connections. So, get comfortable, enjoy your drive, or whatever it is you doing and enjoy this chat with Stacy Garcia.

Thank you, Stacy. I truly appreciate the time and insights. We covered a lot of ground. Thank you Walker Zanger for your continued support. And, thank YOU for listening. Convo By Design would not exist were it not for you, so thank you. Make sure you are following along on Instagram ConvoXDesign, with and “X” and subscribe to the show everywhere you find your favorite podcasts. Until next week, be well and keep creating.