MIES VAN DER ROHE HAD it right in his observatio­n that simplicity of design is the hardest kind, say Krista Schrock and David John Dick. “Restraint can be difficult,” says Schrock, “but many of our clients come to us because they don’t want something overly decorated.” Since establishi­ng their Los Angeles–based firm, which includes forthcomin­g furniture for Lawsonfenn­ing along with the release of their 2021 book Portraits of Home, the pair has found enduring inspiratio­n in the dichotomy of two regional architectu­ral triumphs: Arts and Crafts’ ingenious layering of materials (Pasadena’s Gamble House, for example) and California’s early missions. The latter’s “monastic simplicity—of space and form, of plaster texture and elemental ironwork—has such a beautiful mimimalism,” notes Dick. Still, the pair is not pursuing nostalgia. “We’re looking forward. We want our spaces to feel fresh,” says Dick. Schrock adds, “Not of-the-moment, but always current.”

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