Hands up if you’ve literally been eyeballing every corner of your home since quarantine began—and scheming plans for re-styling, new furniture purchases, and the like. I’m with you! So, when our friend, Ginny Macdonald released her stunning new upholstered furniture collection with Lulu & Georgia last month, design dreaming went into overdrive. Inspired by her English heritage and handmade in Los Angeles, each piece in the collection fuses Ginny’s British roots with that sweet California lifestyle we so love—and it is perfection. We sat down with her to glean on just how this gorgeous collection came to life.
What was the inspiration behind your beautiful new collection with Lulu & Georgia?
I started making custom pieces for clients, but I’ve always wanted to partner with someone to produce a collection. While working with clients on their own homes and with Sara Sugarman who is the founder of Lulu & Georgia, I’ve designed several pieces for them including sofas, beds, and benches so it all really started from there.
What does timeless design mean to you?
I wanted the collection to feel like something you’d see in a drawing room or library of a Victorian house in London. I also wanted to fuse that with the modern California style which is fresh and earthy. Being able to achieve both those things is what is timeless to me.
The colorways in the collection are stunning. Tell us about how you chose the colors for this collection?
Since we have a lot of colour choices I wanted to give people options and for them to be used in every style of house. For example, I could see the Hollingworth sofa in Goldenrod velvet being used in a Mid-Century style house, but then it could also work in the Jade velvet in a craftsman style. I wanted people to have fun with the pieces and colours.
What tips you have for someone anxious to layer in color with furniture?
Once someone is ready to take the plunge, do it with one smaller piece (a side chair, an ottoman, etc.) and then build from there. However, an inexpensive way to see if someone likes colour in their house is to use throw pillows. Those are a quick swap out and can really change the look of a sofa or chair. I’m a big believer in researching and testing things out through ordering samples, memo-ing furniture, and buying and returning (as long as you’re extremely careful and don’t “use” the pieces). I think you sometimes need to live with something overnight to know if you like it or not.
The fabrics and finishes are so lovely. I’m assuming they age with absolute grace, but can you share a bit on the care and durability?
We opted for 100% linen and cotton velvet for the fabrics, so they’ll age and wear over time, much like metal patina. I often prefer a natural fiber to a synthetic fabric and if they are cared for properly they will last a long time. Tips for caring, NEVER rub the fabrics, especially the velvet as that will crush the pile. Always blot and use either an upholstery shampoo or mild detergent with a clean cloth for spillages. Just be mindful that since some of these fabrics are rich in colour they will be more prone to sun bleaching, which is a problem in LA at least. Try to have them away from direct sunlight or opt for the lighter tones.
Every piece is stunning, but do you have any favorites?
I love the Ambleside bed, the Rivington sofa, and the Belmont chair, all of which I own. The Belmont chair was a late addition to the collection, but I think this is one of the most important pieces. It’s extremely versatile and can be used pretty much anywhere. We made it so that it’s slightly wider in the seat, so it sits comfortably for everyone.
I can’t go without saying how much it was a pleasure working with the Lulu and Georgia team. I don’t think people realize what goes into creating a collection like this. A lot of hands went into this whole thing coming together and I’m forever grateful for everyone’s hard work and dedication, especially considering the fact that this happened around the pandemic.