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Store Tour: West Hollywood

Modern Natural Design at GARDE

 

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GARDE is one of those shops that makes you feel the need to go home and instantly purge 90% of your current furnishings and decor (oh, and clothing too). Not only does owner Scotti Sitz have an amazing talent for sourcing expertly crafted pieces from all over the world, but she also has discernment in choosing her inventory (meaning she has no problem passing on amazing pieces that don’t fit the GARDE aesthetic). By staying within the confines of a minimal color palette and sourcing modern items that use natural materials, Scotti has built a collection that feels cohesive, intentional, and ultimately harmonious. It’s like the Kate Moss of design stores: understated, unfathomably gorgeous and effortlessly cool.

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GARDE, West Hollywood
Scotti Sitz, Owner

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1. How long have you been in business and how did you get started?

GARDE opened in March of 2012. I had a passion for interiors and spent many years doing interior design here in Los Angeles. My last interior design project was working for a French family. All of my sourcing had to be from overseas and I quickly realized that there were  many designers and artists who had no representation in Los Angeles. I was surprised and frustrated that I couldn’t get what I wanted here in LA. So I decided I will fill that void. I had long wanted my own shop, and that experience helped formulate my vision more clearly.

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2. Why did you choose this location to open your business? 

I have watched this neighborhood evolve over the years into a wonderful destination for vintage furniture, lighting and design, as well as restaurants. Beverly Boulevard was always my first choice for a shop location. The street is one of the few with grass and magnolia trees, it just felt right.

3. How would you describe your store’s style/aesthetic?

The words I have always thought of when relating to GARDE is “modern natural.” Clean and minimal with layers of warmth, tactile elements and sometimes unusual.

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4. Where did you get your name from and what other names did you consider?

Naming a business is probably one of the hardest things to do.  We ran the idea of GARDE which was a take on avant-garde by friends and it just felt right. Now we could not imagine the name to be anything else.

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5. What types of items are your best sellers? (i.e. brands, specific pieces, etc.)

Honestly, a variety of items are great sellers.  Right now, our top items would have to be The Black Walnut Oval Bowl by The Wooden Palate in Los Angeles, the Scintilla Brass and Glass Table Lamp from Dante Goods and Bads in Germany, The Censer Incense Burner from Apparatus Studio in New York City, The Medallion Mirrors by Rooms Design of Tibilisi, Georgia, as well as a range of marble or stone pieces by Belgium’s Michael Verheyden.  And last Tom Dixon home accessories continue to fly out!

6. What item do you have in the store now that you would want to have in your home?

Everything! Every time something new arrives I want to take it home, but if I had to choose one item, right now my current love is the hand-blown glass bowls from Alexa Lixfeld of Hamburg, Germany.

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7. What have you been inspired by lately? (colors, styles, themes, locations, etc.) 

I’m having a pink moment which in my monochromatic world is unusual.  But I recently brought in soft pink linen bedding and then I did some signage in hot fuschia pink.  I am off to France in a week and taking a side trip to Arles in the South so I am hoping for lots of inspiration!

8. Is there something you thought would sell really well but didn’t?

Some things are ahead of their time and take a bit longer for customers to appreciate, like a couple of avant-garde jewelry designers that were more art than wearable.

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9. Where do you mainly source your items from?

Most of our sources are from Europe.  Many designers come to us via word of mouth now, but my travels to Europe are always great for new discoveries.

10. What was the first big lesson you learned from opening your store?

How much hard work it is!!  Stick to your gut instinct.  Every time I think to try something new that may not be my style or taste, it usually bombs.

11. What would your one piece of advice you would give to small businesses?

If you’re doing it yourself and on a budget, get ready to do everything and make sure you are very organized!  Follow your heart, and enjoy the ride.

12. What stores do you shop at?

I wish I had a chance to get out more and shop.  In LA I love  NK Shop, RTH and Hammer & Spear.  For fabulous vintage I adore Dana John. In Palm Springs I head to Flow Modern.

In Paris I try to visit L’Eclaireur, Muriel Grateau, and in Antwerp of course Dries Van Noten.

13. Do you have any plans to expand your inventory?

I am always expanding and mixing the inventory.  I would love to bring in more and more!  I just need a bigger box!

14. What trends, if any, are you tired of?

Anything General Store, and DIY projects. There are so many talented artists and designers making wonderful creations that I don’t need to make a thing.

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Come visit Scotti and the impeccable GARDE at 7418 Beverly Blvd. in West Hollywood. In the meantime, here are some of my favorites…

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1. Bawl Wooden Coat Hangers | 2. Dandelion Weave Hemp Rug | 3. Madeline Weinrib Rug | 4. Rebecca Atwood Pillow | 5. Apparatus Incense Burner | 6. Billy Cotton Brass Chandelier | 7. Natasha Wheat Necklace | 8. Indigo Storm Pitcher

Want more of my LA vintage stores that I’m stupidly/candidly/publicly revealing? Check these out: Sunbeam Vintage | Gibson | Hammer + Spear | Poketo | Inheritance

Think your shop would be a great fit for our next tour? Contact us for info on pricing at hello@emilyhendersondesign.com.

*all shop photos by Jessica Isaac for EHD

 

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  1. so diy projects are a trend now… I guess in her world but many of us do it because of limited budgets.

    1. lol I was thinking that as well. Not all of us can afford a 13,000 rug or a 290 single throw pillow. I cringed and had serious buyers guilt when I bought $50/pillow throw pillows thinking I was being ridiculous getting the pair.

      If I had the money I would support more artists and not DIY so much but alas until I will the lottery 🙂

      Beautiful pieces though and the store looks amazing…

      1. Thanks for shareing — xem boi bai

    2. I kind of agree that DIY is trendy right now. It for sure seems a lot more popular now than it did like 10 years ago. There seems to be a lot of DIY just for the sake of DIY… even if it takes 4 times as long and costs twice as much. But that might be because of blogs, pinterest, etc. I personally am not over it, but I do see how someone else could be. 🙂

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  2. Can you open up in dc?!? What a beautiful store….

  3. Great shop. I have a question, is this post sponsored? At the end of your post you have an email for people to inquire on pricing.

    1. I second your question, Sheila. I always (perhaps naively) assumed that these posts highlighted stores that Emily and her team personally loved and wanted to recommend. But it seems this may not be the case?

  4. Beautiful things- but good lord. SOOO out of reach

  5. I love the design of her store! All the clean lines and bright colors make it really inviting!

    Paige
    http://thehappyflammily.com

  6. a bit of a low blow to call out another store as a trend to be sick of.

    1. I agree. Weird too that she says “support artists and designers!” right after she disses a store that is all about local artisans and craftspeople. And the DIY comment was definitely pretty class-insensitive. Spending too much time in the world of high-end design can warp your perspective, it seems to me.

  7. This a a store full of quirky and unexpected items – very beautiful collection.
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  8. This is fantastic! I love them all!

  9. This is exactly how I describe my home style

    … “modern natural”. Clean and minimal with layers of warmth, tactile elements and sometimes unusual.

    Bright white, clean lines, architectural structures, then I add tons of fabric/curtains/rugs to warm it up and top it off with weird random crud I have collected.

  10. Some of my favorite local shops are incredibly discerning when it comes to selecting inventory. This shop actually reminds me of a local spot in Louisville called Scout on Market.

    Josh | The Kentucky Gent
    http://thekentuckygent.com

  11. ahhhhh I also *cringed* when I read her quote about being ‘tired of DIY’
    How can you ‘be tired of” people being inspired and using the resources they have available to create art and beautiful things which make their house a home. I know she isn’t ill-hearted, but it just shows how out of touch she is with how people live. I don’t believe that Emily believes a well-designed home is only deserved for the privileged.

    1. Agreed. I don’t think Emily believes a well-designed home is only for privileged (read:wealthy) people. It would be nice to have a ‘get the look for less’ with comparable items at the end of this post. Because….her best selling items are a $600 bowl and a $1400 lightbulb on a little bitty base! That lightbulb lamp is comparable to a mortgage payment. And she sells many of them? That’s a different world, for sure.

      I’ll never tire of DIY, it’s so great to see people have the confidence to try things themselves. After all, things we consider ‘art’ now were once DIY – i.e., Gee’s Bend quilts, tramp art, etc.

      1. Agreed! Aren’t we all artists anyways?
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  12. Totally agree, out of reach for most people

  13. Her shop is beautiful and I’m sure she’s a very nice person, but PR is not her thing. Along with the icky diy/General Store comments already mentioned, there’s this one:

    “Some things are ahead of their time and take a bit longer for customers to appreciate, like a couple of avant-garde jewelry designers that were more art than wearable….”

    Maybe. And maybe some pieces don’t sell because they simply aren’t good; sniffing that it’s due to a lack of discernment from us philistines is offensive.

    The avant-garde is exciting and absolutely necessary, but sometimes it’s just bad.

    1. Well said, Jandy.

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  15. I enjoy this specific palate/curated over time space. It’s fun to see different store spaces in LA and this one just happens to sell a luxurious vibe. Now I get to poke fun at the owner-in good jest. For the affordable options: purchase anything white at target, paint your books brown, and display dangerously fragile glassware from home goods. I love diy btw and Emily love your blog!

  16. Holy moly this place is amazing!! This probably the one time I didn’t want you to link to all the products b/c the prices just killed me. When I get rich though, I’ll be back. So beautiful.

  17. Holy moly this place is amazing!! This is probably the one time I didn’t want you to link to all the products b/c the prices just killed me. When I get rich though, I’ll be back. So beautiful.

  18. Since when was DIY trendy? I know plenty people who have “DIYed” for decades. Personally I’ve only done it for two decades. Quite the “trend”…

  19. First off, let me say that I love your blog and really look forward to reading your posts. I have noticed in your store tour posts that one question is always worded incorrectly (question #11 in this post). I’m sure that this is an oversight but wanted to mention it since things are usually well written.

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  31. I enjoy this specific palate/curated over time space. It’s fun to see different store spaces in LA and this one just happens to sell a luxurious vibe. Now I get to poke fun at the owner-in good jest. For the affordable options: purchase anything white at target, paint your books brown, and display dangerously fragile glassware from home goods. I love diy btw and Emily love your blog!

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  35. I also *cringed* when I read her quote about being ‘tired of DIY’ :((((((((

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  41. so diy projects are a trend now

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  44. What a beautiful store….Can you open up in dc?!?

  45. Wow…. this place is amazing!! This probably the one time I didn’t want you to link to all the products b/c the prices just killed me. When I get rich though, I’ll be back. So beautiful.

  46. Great shop. I have a question, is this post sponsored? At the end of your post you have an email for people to inquire on pricing.

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