Here in Los Angeles, our friend Sally Horchow of VeryGoodLooking.com is a fabulous lifestyle expert on topics like design, fashion, travel, food and entertaining, and has also been in the media, from contributing to newspapers and magazines to appearing on TV and radio shows. We were so excited to catch up with Sally and ask her questions about her style and inspirations, upcoming trends, and, of course, her new website. Check out our Q&A:
Hillary Thomas: How do you define your personal design style?
Sally Horchow: Classic with global inspiration.
How has growing up in Dallas and now living in L.A. influenced your style?
Rebelling against the matchy-matchy instinct that is ingrained in all Texans has inspired my style, in clothes and in home décor. Unfortunately, my attempt to also rebel against my parents’ tchotchke-laden tablescapes has failed. I guess I am my parents’ daughter – I will never be a sleek minimalist. I just like things too much!
Where do you find design inspiration?
From our travels – not just by the colors and textures of a new country, but by visiting with friends in their homes around the world, which my husband and I always try to do. Seeing the way other people live and how their style relates to their surroundings really inspires me.
What’s your favorite room in your home, and why?
I love our Moroccan Terrace because it takes the most advantage of living in L.A., since it’s a full living room, outside, and also because it’s such a comfortable setting. Friends gravitate to it, so it’s often where all the best conversations happen.
What about your favorite design accessory?
I have this set of three life-size wooden hands that I found at the [short-lived] Dodger Stadium Flea Market last year, which have become the staple in my seasonally-changing mantelscape. They can be dressed up or down, laden with flowers or beads, or pointing to something in particular. They’re v fun!
Where are your go-to places in L.A. for chic home décor?
I really don’t shop for home décor when I’m in town – more when I travel. But when I’m itching to refresh a room, I might shop for a new rug to pack a punch – and I love the selection at The Rug Company on Melrose. I also love to buy tabletop – at Barneys or Tableart.
You live with your husband and two Labs. What have you guys done to keep your home dog-friendly and still stylish?
When we had to buy doggie stairs for the girls to get up to our bed, we got beige micro-velvet ones, so they are the least ugly they could be, but I wouldn’t say they’re chic! And we replaced our seagrass rug with a Finish vinyl one (from CurranFloor.com) that is woven like sisal and much more durable.
Is there one piece of furniture of your husband’s that he wouldn’t let go of and you had to design around?
His beloved Pottery Barnsleigh bed is in our place in Malibu, though you wouldn’t recognize it as such, because the front “sleigh” has been removed and the wooden headboard has been covered with fabric.
You’re known as a lifestyle and trend expert. What design trends do you see on the horizon?
Whimsy & sense of humor – even if just a touch. Jonathan Adler is prescient!
You just started the website VeryGoodLooking.com. Tell us about what inspired this!
My mother used to say very seriously, when looking at a beautifully laid-out table or a well-tailored jacket, “That is very good-looking.” It was her ultimate compliment, and to her, it meant something was in “good taste.” But good taste is so subjective, and developing your own taste is a lifelong journey that should be fun. So, as a tribute to my mom (and my dad), I created VeryGoodLooking – which is a website with videos, resources, and deals in categories from “Style” to “Food & Drink” to “Social” – to give people a window into my ever-evolving taste journey, and to help them on their own. It’s about showing my “very good-looking” finds, and helping you find what’s very good-looking to you.
What’s one thing everyone needs to know about VGL?
You can create your own taste, and use VeryGoodLooking.com, in the same three steps:
- Find what you like
- Make it your own
- Share it with others
…and then YOU will be VERY good-looking!