Leslie Landis is a local Interior Decorator specializing in Residential Design. We are thrilled to have caught up with Leslie for a chat! We love her Modern Craftsman designs and her advice to “Decorate for the way you live.” As a Silver Lake neighborhood expert and a Silver Lake Realtor, I love catching up with local designers and decorators to see what’s hot right now. Plus its great chatting with creative professionals and learning about their vision. Several of our real estate clients are interested in decorating their new homes or redecorating a room that needs a little something.
Wallpaper is one of Leslie’s favorite things
How long have you lived in Los Angeles?
18 years but I grew up in Orange County so I’m a socal native
What are your thoughts on how the Eastside is changing?
It interesting to watch the evolution of a neighborhood. 7 years ago when I moved to Silverlake there weren’t many late night dining options now we’re spoiled. I recently moved to Macarthur Park and it feels like Echo Park did 10 years ago.
Do you own or rent?
What are your favorite local spots for dining and relaxing?
Casita Del Campo for old school Mexican, Cafe Tropical for breakfast croissants after hiking with my dog in Elysian Park. A friend of mine has a DJ night at the Short Stop called the Early Bird Special. It’s 6:30-9:30 one Sunday a month, super fun and I get to bed a reasonable hour on a school night.
What was your first job out of school and how long did you have it?
I worked for a residential interior designer based in Rustic Canyon for 3 years after school. Really helped me develop my eye and learn to trust my gut.
A Modern Craftsman design by Leslie
When did you discover your passion for design?
Trial and error. I moved to LA to study fashion but discovered it wasn’t for me. Then I did the architecture program at SMC. Then I split the difference and pursued interiors.
Tell us about your creative process.
I’m very collaborative, somewhere between me and my client is an even better design. Most people know what they like but don’t know how to get there. I ask a lot of questions and try to get to the bottom of what moves my clients. Coming up with a narrative that sets the tone for the space and it’s fun.
Tell us about the process of launching your own interior decorator company.
Launch suggests that it happened all at once! I took small jobs on the side and decorated friends houses while working for other firms until I was too busy to do both. And then bam! Launched. I was lucky to work with great people, learning about the business side of design while developing my eye.
If we had the chance to peek at your schedule, what would an average day look like?
I try to split my day up by office days and field days so it can really differ. On an install day I will be on a job site receiving deliveries and supervising placement of art, furniture and lighting. Those are long days but so satisfying when the client comes home to a big reveal.
We love the simple yet elegant decoration
Tell us about a memorable client or project.
For Christmas I received a card from a long time client thanking me for making their house their favorite place to be. It was very sweet and really that’s my main goal in design, to make a clients house really work for them.
What are you currently fascinated by and how is it feeding into your work?
Architect Mary Colter. She designed the Fred Harvey restaurant at Union station along with quite a few building in national parks. The way she interpreted native motifs into her work is so sophisticated and very right now in design. I’m planning an architecture focused road trim in May and several of her buildings are on the itinerary. I plan on coming back inspired.
You have a dog named Raincheck. Do people ever incorporate their pets into the design/decoration process of their home? If so, how?
You have to decorate for the way you live. My little dog is allowed on the couch, so I chose a durable midtone fabric. One client right now has two beautiful, very furry golden retrievers, a dark fabric sofa isn’t going to work for them. Leather is a good choice or I’ll have clients order a few extra yards of sofa fabric and use that as a dog cover on the sofa seat. Way easier to clean.
Leslie’s Dog Raincheck
What has been the most valuable thing you’ve learned about business since launching your own?
Put everything in the Google calendar.
How have you overcome obstacles and stayed driven?
I really love what I do so that helps overcome bad days. Design is fun and it’s exciting to create beautiful spaces. Staying inspired by reading, hiking or experiencing art really helps. Inspiration can strike anywhere.
Many people struggle to turn their passions into careers. What advice would you give them?
Not every passion needs to be a career. Sometimes the quickest way to burn out is to turn your hobby into a job. That being said, feel it out by taking on small jobs on the side to see if you like it and then look for possible opportunities. If you do good work people will find you.
A Modern Craftsman Design by Leslie
leslie landis, principal interior designer
Silver Lake Neighborhood Expert
I’m a local real estate agent with Sothebys International Realty and a Silver Lake Neighborhood Expert and It would be my pleasure to help you find the perfect property to call home in Silver Lake CA, or if you’re thinking about selling a house, condo, or multi-family building in, Silver Lake, Hollywood Hills, Los Feliz, Atwater Village, Glassell Park, Mount Washington, or Downtown Los Angeles, it would be a privilege to help you get top dollar for the sale of your property.
Lets chat sometime. 310-913-9477 or contact me.