March 6, 2020

22 Influential Female Designers and Their Recent Projects

March 8 may be International Women’s Day, but female designers are busy at work all year long. So we’re celebrating by highlighting 22 recent projects designed by women.

1. The Arts Club of London by Joyce Wang Studio

Founded in 1863 by a triad of inspired masterminds that included Charles Dickens, The Arts Club of London—one of the world’s most revered and exclusive private members’ clubs—has been growing steadily ever since. Its first international outpost is set to open in Dubai later this year, followed by a swanky new build on Los Angeles’ Sunset Boulevard. London’s glory days, however, are far from over, courtesy of Joyce Wang Studio, which recently transformed the Arts Club’s Mayfair location with a refined Japanese restaurant and a new cigar lounge.

2. London Apartment by Jo Littlefair of Goddard Littlefair

“The views are breathtaking, and it was important to maximize sightlines to the paranormal of the skyline,” says director and co-founder Jo Littlefair. “However, glass can give off a slightly cold feel. We countered [its] hard materiality with curved furniture and used tactile materials to create a serene environment.” Throughout the three-bedroom, three-and-a-half-bath space, custom furnishings in tones of blush, light blue, and cream join what Littlefair calls “layers of personality, a mix of materials from light wood, marble, and ceramics to demure metallics, reflecting the design of the building’s façade.”

3. Tel Aviv Condo by Yael Gal Interior Design

Tel Aviv might be home to the architecturally celebrated White City, but that doesn’t mean the city’s residents necessarily want to live in a white box, as Yael Gal discovered while spending a few weeks with the owners of a 4,000-square-foot condo in the heart of the city. For a couple that loved the color gold, Yael Gal installed “glittering details” everywhere—from the Deco glamour of the living room bar, to golden-veined marble in the kitchen and bath, to flooring in latte marble with brass details, reaching an apotheosis in a marble waterfall that lines a suspended corridor between the public and private areas.

4. French Farmhouse by Rysia Suchecka of NBBJ

Interior Design Hall of Fame member and NBBJ consulting partner Rysia Suchecka and her husband reinvented a centuries-old farm in Larroque-Saint-Sernan, France, as a modern private residence and cultural compound for art and music. Supporting the local community has in fact been a driving force at all stages of the now-completed restoration. All interior elements were custom designed by Rysia Suchecka and made within 10 miles of the property, and every subcontractor—from the stonemason to the ébéniste—was local.

5. Sonia Boyajian Jewelry Store by Pamela Shamshiri of Studio Shamshiri

Accessories and interiors can have a sympathetic relationship. Witness Sonia Boyajian, the new eponymously named jewelry boutique and workshop in Los Angeles by Studio Shamshiri. The genesis of the relationship between Boyajian and Pamela Shamshiri was a dinner party years ago. When the jewelry designer recently outgrew her studio and decided to open a retail space, she turned to now-friend Shamshiri, and the two headed to Georgia O’Keeffe’s home and studio in New Mexico for inspiration.

6. Parkzoo Xiangyuan Hangzhou by Li Xiang of X + Living

X+Living’s chairman and chief designer Li Xiang had a higher purpose in mind by going wild at the 195,000-square-foot Parkzoo Xiangyuan Hangzhou hotel
, located in the city’s tourist-friendly Gongshu district. “These animals are not just an eye-catching aesthetic device to inject contour and shape into the scheme,” the architect begins. “Their use as decoration is also a public interest prompt, a way to draw attention to the plight of en­dangered species.”

7. Hija de Tigre Clothing Store 
by Inés Guzmán of Taller KEN

San José’s Hija de Tigre boutique isn’t just a destination for fashionable Costa Rican women—it’s owned and run by them, too, namely a mom and her two daughters. What’s more, its new 4,850-square-foot space also had a female designer: Taller KEN lead architect Inés Guzmán, whose team brought a fresh sense of tropical modernism to an existing structure located in the city’s cool Escazú suburb.

8. One Manhattan Square Model Apartments by Anna Karlin

For the One Manhattan Square development on NYC’s Lower East Side, Karlin went beyond developing mere model homes for the 10 spaces she was given and built entire worlds around their potential residents, complete with character studies and contexts.

9. Santa Monica Proper by Kelly Wearstler

This hotel is part of Proper Hotels & Residences, a brand of hotel and residential properties that Wearstler is currently working on. Properties in San Francisco, Santa Monica, and Austin, Texas, are open, downtown L.A. bows this year, and Portland, Oregon is scheduled for 2022.

10. Paradigm Los Angeles by Lauren Rottet of Rottet Studio

“Light and movement.” That’s what Sam Gores said he wanted to see upon entering his office in Los Angeles. And when the chairman and CEO of Paradigm Talent Agency asks for something, that is precisely what he gets—particularly when the project is designed by Rottet Studio. 

11. Palms Casino Resort by Andrea DeRosa and Ashley Manhan of Avenue Interior Design

Designers Andrea DeRosa and Ashley Manhan founded Los Angeles-based Avenue Interior Design in 2009, and describe their design ethos as a proprietary blend of eclecticism, freshly tailored to each client, combined with a dedication to clear communication and the project’s bottom line.

12. Adolphus Hotel by Samantha Sano and Joslyn Taylor of Swoon, the Studio

Sano and Taylor were ambitious as they tackled each communal space with an eye to modernize all the decadence without diminishing the original 1912 design. The idea was to restore the former glories, but with some restraint. In the French Room Bar, a Mr. Brown London chandelier glitters between the ceiling’s Phillip Jeffries gold leaf wallcovering and the bar itself, made of stained white oak and topped with honed black marble.

13. Family Home by Lauren Schneider, Kelli Riley, and Jenna Rochon of Transition State

Life as a young couple with three children is complicated enough; home should be a calm refuge. That, at least, is the idea behind a 4,473-square-foot home by Santa Monica, CA-based Transition State co-founders Lauren Schneider, Kelli Riley, and Jenna Rochon. “Designing with children in mind is always challenging,” the team says. “We thought a lot about the way they would interact with the space and the pieces within it and avoided choosing products with sharp corners or easily stained fabrics.”

14. Lolly Laputan Kids Café by Min Erni of Wutopia Lab

Beckoning from behind the painted-aluminum facade perforated in a dotty pattern is a circular reception that leads to the main zone, Cloudy Town: an expansive room with dining booths, a carousel, slide, and ball pit—and named for the fluffy white-acrylic “clouds” on the floor and ceiling.

15. West Village Apartment by Brittney Hart of Husband Wife

When your clients are the family of a successful Broadway producer, it’s only fitting that a sophisticated space for entertaining doubles as a comfortable, welcoming interior suitable for two small children and a dog. Brittney Hart, co-founder of New York-based Husband Wife, achieved such a balancing act when redesigning this 2,000-square-foot apartment in the historic Butterfield House in Manhattan’s West Village.

16. Cafe Polet by Alina Pimkina of Asthetíque Group

Cafe Polet (Russian for flight) finds myriad ways to evoke the distinct forms and flavors of Soviet-era aviation and its extension into outer space. The theme of flight is, of course, front and center: Little stainless-steel aircraft silhouettes, mounted on stands, serve as table numbers or, affixed to a circular column and individually backlit.

17. Tango House by Carol Kurth of Carol Kurth Architecture + Interiors 
and Laura Bohn of Laura Bohn Design Associates

Architect Carol Kurth was enlisted by dance-crazy clients to design a new home for them. The house Kurth conceived is a modern assemblage of interlocking volumes that plays openness against privacycomplete with a tango studio. With the construction plans already under approval, Laura Bohn was brought on board to do the project’s interiors. Bohn, who is known for her soft modernism, proved to be an ideal collaborator, providing plush comfort to counter the interior’s naturally hard surfaces.

18. Asbury Ocean Club by Anda Andrei Design

The Interior Design Hall of Fame member reassembled with Bonetti/Kozerski Architecture and Design and Handel Architects with Asbury Ocean Club, a luxury building composed of a 17-story residential tower and a 54-room boutique hotel, all overlooking the Atlantic Ocean.

19. Palm Beach Residence by Jennifer Post of Jennifer Post Design

Jennifer Post sums up this snappy Palm Beach, Florida, abode in three words: “Simplicity, simplicity, simplicity!” (OK, technically one word.) “My challenge was to streamline,” she explains. “This house is not grandiose; it’s a jewel box.” It’s true that the cottage exhibits an almost disarming clarity. For starters, every surface is white—walls, floors, ceiling, window frames—as are the majority of the furnishings, and there’s primarily one accent color: beach-appropriate blue.

20. Dublin Coach House by Róisín Lafferty of Kingston Lafferty Design

Róisín Lafferty was brought onto the project early enough to collaborate with Ferreira Architects on fundamental decisions of layout, materials, and finishes. Among the signature gestures, she brought to the four-bedroom house were her frisky sense of color and irreverent brand of modernism. “To me,” she says, “the layout of the project was very much about creating an exciting and unexpected journey that gives people options for how they circulate through it.”

21. Nani Marquina of Nanimarquina‘s own Costa Brava Retreat

The 1970s dwelling, purchased three years ago from a painter friend, has a whitewashed simplicity that renders it a perfect backdrop for the couple’s assorted ephemera. “The most important thing is not the container, but the contents,” Nani Marquina says.

22. Kiev Apartment by Victoria Oskilkok of Mono Architects

Everyday life seems more complicated, but that doesn’t mean one’s home should be. Ukraine’s Mono Architects distilled domesticity to its essence in a Kiev apartment, which Founder and Chief Architect Victoria Oskilkok describes as “calm, monochrome, and minimalistic, which is the signature of our bureau.”

Read next: Elizabeth Diller of Diller Scofidio + Renfro Wins 2019 Women in Architecture Jane Drew Prize

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