The importance of feeling comfortable in one’s home is priceless, with people from across the Los Angeles area always looking for the next step to upgrade their property’s style and functionality. This week, locals will get the chance to do just that during the west coast’s premier event dedicated to the latest in interior design and housing lifestyle.
WestEdge Design Fair returns to Santa Monica for the first time since 2019 beginning Thursday, a three-day experience featuring over 175 brands from across the globe in categories such as furniture, lighting, art, kitchen and bath amenities. Taking over the Santa Monica Airport’s Barker Hangar venue, attendees will be able to survey new and exciting products, as well as hear from over 45 presenting speakers and take part in 20 culinary and mixology demonstrations.
The combination of design products and lifestyle innovation is more needed than ever, says WestEdge co-founder Megan Reilly, particularly after the COVID-19 pandemic shed light on the need for a happy home.
“During COVID, we spent more and more time at home, [so] we recognize how important it is to have a space that you’re comfortable in, but [also be] functional and healthy and nurturing in whatever way it needs to be for you and your family,” Reilly said. “I think that’s part of why people keep coming back, because there’s a demand not only for good design … I think there’s that desire to learn and engage and kind of figure out how you feel the best that you can in your living environment.”
An extension of the now-defunct Architectural Digest Design Show on the east coast, the WestEdge fair has created what Reilly calls a “very solid network” of companies throughout its eight years, looking at brands both new to the Southern California marketplace and more well-known companies.
“[The fair] is proud to showcase the rich diversity of brands and exhibitors from across the globe,” WestEdge Principal Troy Durst stated. “From established industry leaders to emerging talents, the fair represents the best in contemporary design. We’re building a platform where creativity, innovation and the power of design come together, and [I] can’t think of a better place to do so than in Los Angeles given the city’s diverse makeup of innovators and creatives.”
More than just a trade show, however, Reilly calls the fair a “lifestyle event” that caters to the consumer just as much as the design professionals. A “culinary pavilion” sponsored by PIRCH will offer daily food demonstrations and samplings, including a Thanksgiving wine pairings seminar in time for the holiday. The event also features a “Convo By Design” theater with two days of panel talks and industry forums on a variety of topics.
“Even though you’re interacting with a lot of designers, architects, people who are design trade professionals … you can still have access to the event and come in and shop from these products, get inspired, learn something through a panel discussion or a networking event,” Reilly noted.
The fair will kick off on Thursday evening with an Opening Night Party presented by PIRCH, with ticket proceeds and an auction of designer items benefitting Hollywood Food Coalition. The charitable organization’s mission is to feed the food insecure through hot meal services, lunch bags, health services and social services across the Los Angeles area.
“It’s a nice tie-in with … leading into Thanksgiving week and the holiday season, recognizing that everyone should have food on their table,” Reilly said. “We deserve to take care of each other in that sense.”
For a full 2023 exhibitor list and more information on the fair, visit westedgedesignfair.com