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5 swoon worthy things: Love Adorned

Love Adorned

By Natalie Goel

With artisan and vintage wares like colorful textiles, standout ceramics, woven bucket bags and geometric stone vessels, Love Adorned certainly has a covetable selection of offerings — but it’s the way these products are creatively displayed that truly make the boutique a swooners’ paradise. With carefully-chosen items sourced both locally and from markets all over the world, the store is chock-full of treasures merchandised in the most artful of ways.

So with the holiday gifting season underway, we caught up with owner Lori Leven, who also happens to be a dear friend of Athena’s, to find out the items currently on her radar. While we were at it, we also picked Lori’s brain on some of her time-tested tips for shopping at markets, her approach to creating such clever product displays, and her insights into cultivating Love Adorned’s incredible, identifiable style. Take a look below.

Lori Leven, Love Adorned | 5 Swoon-Worthy Things | EyeSwoon

NAME: Lori Leven

PROFESSION: Merchant, designer, collector

ENDLESSLY OBSESSED WITH: The hunt.

DESIGN PHILOSOPHY: Spend money on timeless items that anchor the space, decorate with sentimental pieces and fill lightly with trend.

LOVE ADORNED AESTHETIC: Eclectic, artist-driven, utilitarian.

LA HAS AN INCREDIBLE, IDENTIFIABLE STYLE. WHAT QUALITIES DO YOU LOOK FOR WHEN STOCKING ITEMS? I’m attracted to unusual items. But no matter how quirky something is, it has to be high-quality and usable.

HOW DID YOU COME TO DO WHAT YOU DO?: Being a serious shopper and collector myself, I felt that I couldn’t find the original experience that I was looking for. So after years of dreaming about what that would look like, I created it.

DESIGN TREND YOU LOVE: Furry chairs.

DESIGN TREND YOU WISH WOULD GO AWAY: Big floral textiles.

COLOR OR NEUTRAL?: They rely on each other to be successful…

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Love Adorned NYC | 5 Swoon-Worthy Things | EyeSwoon
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YOU WILL NEVER SEE ____ IN MY HOME: Minimalism. But hopefully in my next life.

ANY TIPS FOR SHOPPING AT MARKETS? DO YOU STRIKE IMMEDIATELY OR MULL IT OVER AND CIRCLE BACK? If you love something, never circle back. It will be gone. But always circle back to see things with new eyes and fill in with complimentary items for your purchases you made on the first go round. The best tips I can give you for being successful in the markets is go early, wear layers and bring snacks.

BEST-EVER VINTAGE SCORE: An antique Naga bench carved from one piece of hardwood that I loved so much I had it sent home from India.

CAN YOU SPEAK ABOUT YOUR CLEVER STYLE OF MERCHANDISING AT THE STORE? WE’RE OBSESSED!: I feel that when you walk into a store that you should feel transported. Stresses left at the door and wonderment throughout. Love’s Art Director, Vincent Martinelli, and I, spend a lot of time thinking about how we can create that feeling. I always say, if I can dream it, Vincent can build it. We’re a good team.

DESIGN ICONS? How about an architect? I dream about living in a John Lautner house.

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Love Adorned Santa Monica | 5 Swoon-Worthy Things | EyeSwoon
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Love Adorned
  1. Vintage Italian Blown Glass “Murano Sommerso” Vases: A type of Murano art glass that has layered colors. The effect as you move around it is mesmerizing.

  2. Laguiole en Aubrac Rosewood BBQ Set: Vincent is a year-round BBQer. This set is one of those beautiful and timeless pieces that I was talking about. Something you will have and use forever.

  3. Suzanne Sullivan Porcelain Planter: For so long, it was difficult to find glorious small planters. Now with people like Jonathan Cross and Suzanne Sullivan, it has all changed.

  4. Mad et Len Classic Candle in Spirituelle: We have this scent in a candle, room spray and diffuser. It is like no other. The notes include basil and mint tea but the aroma is actually what you would think the color green smells like.

  5. Harry Bertoia Sonambient Sculpture: These interactive metal rod sculptures sing to you when you run your hands across them. He even made albums to accompany them.

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