INTERVIEW Gabriel Hendifar

By now you have probably seen the stunning work of designer Gabriel Hendifar. If you haven’t, you’re in for a treat. Every image is a feast for the eyes, and my heart beats a little faster at the site of the richness, the textures, the drama, the flair…ahhhhh

…Back to reality! I had the opportunity to correspond with him recently (a fellow Bruin, I might add!) and get a few essential questions answered for us:

1. When first starting a project, what are some ways in which you get the process going?

It’s a rather playful process. Sometimes I sketch, sometimes I take things apart and put them back together again. There is a lot of exploration and a good amount of walking away and waiting to see if an idea sticks. Stickiness is the key. We can make a lot of beautiful things, but the essential ones stick. Jeremy, my partner, really hones me in. He’s an eagle eye and a great editor. We start to bounce and build ideas off of each other, and good things become better things.

2. Where do you find inspiration?

This goes back to form and material. I see interesting forms and shapes in the world everywhere. Architecture, art, fashion.  Similarly, materials are inspirational and determine form.

The most elusive inspiration is emotional—when I aspire to give an object a feeling or disposition — a playful lamp, or a nonchalant chandelier. It can be silly, but I think it is in these little choices we make that objects are elevated and given life.

3. What motivates you as a designer?

I was trained as a costume and scenic designer and have been primarily designing womenswear for the past 10 years. I really value an interdisciplinary approach, and the common denominator is my concern for proportion and material. These choices signify intent in an object — whether a jacket, a lamp, or a room.  Ultimately, the day-to-day motivation is to find the boiling point where all of your inspirations and past experiments come together to form something new and beautiful — where proportion and material strike a perfect balance.

4. What do you strive for in your designs?

A sense of timelessness is very important. And often that is more about the heft and material of an object than about its style. Something that feels thoughtfully conceived is timeless to me, whether inspired by classical architecture, or modern art. These are the kinds of interiors that most inspire me as well—spaces where objects of significance are collected and speak to each other in a way that transcends stylistic boundaries.

5. What career advice would you give to those starting in your field?

Play! Make what you want to see in the world. Be informed enough about what’s going on in the design world to be able to disregard it.

6. Where do you shop for your projects?! I know we are all lusting after the pieces you find.

Inheritance on Beverly. Great mix of curated objects and modern design. Online: And I’m kind of an eBay junkie.

8. One tip you can give us to create better spaces?

Invest in good lighting. It’s the room’s jewelry.

If you didn’t know, Gabriel also has an amazing line of light fixtures: Apparatus. Most of the standout pieces in the images above he designed himself! And he shared that they are looking to produce furniture and decorative accessories as well…waiting with bated breath…

No seriously, I can’t get enough. I want more!

Don’t you?


Erika Brechtel

Erika Brechtel

Creative Director

Desiring an online space to explore well-rounded, inspired content in all topics she loves most, Erika created 'The E List' (formerly the Small Shop blog) in 2010. When not enjoying an “occasional" glass of wine and wanderlusting for even warmer climates, Erika can be found sharing laughs with friends and family, and trying her very best to keep up with her 6-year old daughter (yet failing miserably).

  1. Thee must be something in that Bruin water, you both have AMAZING aesthetics and very similar styles. He’s almost as good as you Erika! 🙂

    Honestly that taste level is something that can’t be taught….his spaces are flawless. I’m gonna pin the crap out of this post! XO

  2. Oh my goodness. There aren’t really words to describe these rooms or the interview. Such amazing advice–love the stickiness and that lighting is a room’s jewelry-so spot on!!! Amazing, amazing, amazing. End of story.

  3. I know! He’s incredible! Did you know he also used to do Fashion design and has some incredible sketches! {he should sell them as art} He was kind enough to let me borrow the Compass Chandelier for my showcase room. Def a huge design crush here.

  4. It’s so rare to like every single room that a designer creates! Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous spaces {and great advice}!!

  5. I mean, it’s all so stunning! I think my favorite (which is really hard to say b/c they’re all my favorite) is the bathroom with the stool that has the lucite legs, AMAZING!! I hope one day I can have some elements of this look and feel in our home.

    PS- I didn’t know you were a Bruin 🙂 I am as well!

  6. Seriously turned on right now! I want to make out with all these rooms. So Freakin good! And that lighting…I don’t know if I can take much more. I AM IN LOVE!

  7. breathtaking! i also enjoyed the interview. it’s always so inspiring to get a peek into the creative mind.

  8. I am amazed at the great combo of texture, color and the playful mix in each setup! The gorgeous colorblock carpet is stunning, such a great tie-in! I found you on LA in the Bay’s blog, and am excited to see you in person at FABB- hopefully I won’t be too nervous to say hello!

    x carlina

  9. That WALL. My word. I also love how all of these spaces have natural textures/objects used in various glamorous ways (not one of these rooms could be accuse of being rustic).

  10. Yes! Totally dying to see more of his fabulous work! The spaces seem sooo rich and luxe, especially with all the worn in leather…and that BLACK bathroom!? Holymoly I want to eat/live/work/DIE in there….so dang chic! Awesome interview E!

    I’m hosting 5 days of GIVEAWAYS with 5 chances to WIN in honor of my blog’s 2year anniversary! Would love for you to stop by and check it out!

    Peace. Love. LOL!


  11. I have never met this guy and I already love him! I love his design approach and how he finds inspiration. It’s very refreshing to see a successful designer with a down-to-earth attitude, who gives his work his emotions in addition to his intelligence. I am very inspired! Thank you for sharing with us, Erika!

  12. Love that Gabriel said lighting is like jewelry in a room! So true!!
    His design has so many dimensions of depth I can’t even began to explain it!
    Great interview and feature, Erika!