Laura Aviva may be on the road more than half the year, but for her, there’s still no place like home. The founder of L’Aviva Home, Aviva traverses the globe, collaborating with artisans from India to Morocco to Burkina Faso to create her collection of home goods, textiles and furnishings.
The Los Angeles native has lived in New York City since 2000 and in her current home — a loft in the heart of Soho — for a decade. She moved into the space just as she launched L’Aviva Home. “It was the perfect opportunity for me to design a flexible space that could morph easily as my business grew,” she says.
Overall, Aviva gravitates to a neutral palette with streamlined furnishings. “The look is quite clean,” she notes, “but it takes some clever machinations to keep it feeling that way!”
Main Living Area
“The anchor of this room is a large concrete table that we designed,” says Aviva. “It’s a true workhorse — the team works, shares meals and has client meetings around it.” She purposefully designed the space with a clean aesthetic: “I stuck to a strict black-and-white color scheme. So many materials, samples, colors and textures cross our desks from workshops all over the world. The idea was for this space to be as neutral a canvas as possible.” At the back, she maintained an open, streamlined feeling by installing floor-to-ceiling glass accordion doors to set this area apart from the sitting room, and she outfitted the space with pieces like ATRA’s ALA mahogany bench.
“This room is both studio and personal,” Aviva says. The couch is covered in fabric from her Khovar Collection. “The women in a region of northeastern India have a tradition of doing mud paintings on the walls of their homes,” Aviva explains. “It’s a matrimonial rite of passage performed every year. Then, the monsoons come and wash the paintings away until they start again.” She read about the tradition in the World of Interiors magazine and became “totally enchanted by it and the scale of the lyrical imagery.” She worked with a women’s co-op to commission paintings in the same mud used in the house paintings, which she then translated into digital files. Now, the patterns are available as fabrics and wallcoverings. Here, Aviva combines three motifs: L’Aviva Home’s Leaf and Flower wallpapers are framed on the wall, and the Vine pattern is used to upholster the sofa.
Tucked next to the staircase (which leads to the roof deck) is Aviva’s “pure work nook.” The desk is one of her “favorite-ever pieces of furniture,” she says. “It’s from an iconic and fabled Los Angeles restaurant, the Spanish Kitchen. It had been open since the 1930s, but mysteriously closed in the late ’60s and sat completely untouched, with the tables still set, for decades. At one point, friends — quite illicitly! — hoisted this desk out the window and gave it to me. It’s traveled with me ever since.”
On the wall is Aviva’s inspiration board, made of magnetized brass panels that the L’Aviva Home team patinated. A wooden Senufo stool serves as her desk chair.
As in the main room, Aviva limited the palette in her bedroom. “I feel best around all black and white,” she says. “This is a wholly no-clutter space. I’m also very particular and passionate about sheets: all white linen, all the time. The best I’ve found — and I’ve tried a huge range — are from Rough Linen, in California.”
The rest of the room’s furnishings are a masterful mix of her personal designs sourced from around the world. On the bed is a L’Aviva Home striped Moroccan pompom blanket. She commissioned the headboard, made of a basket weave of caña fleche fibers, from her team of artisans in Tuchín, Colombia. The pair of hanging brass lanterns were made by L’Aviva Home’s Egyptian workshop, and the abacá rug is from the Philippines.
Lunches are a big deal for Aviva and her team. On the brand’s @lavivahome Instagram, there’s a dedicated Stories feature dubbed “l’a Lunches” that showcases the meals Aviva whips up, such as kamut pasta with ricotta salata and honeynut squash. “I cook lunch for our team, and any friends and/or clients who may be passing by, daily,” she says. “I also host dinners.”
A pair of L’Aviva Home lamps made in Egypt hang above the custom-built bar. Aviva uses the assorted market bags, from Morocco and Mexico, at the Union Square Greenmarket each week.
The custom concrete table in the communal space can sit up to 20 people, and Aviva sets it with a mélange of surprising finds and her own creations. “The plates are from Ikea,” she says. “They are huge and weigh a ton. I love their heft.”
The hand-dyed indigo napkins are made by a master artisan she works with in Burkina Faso. The hand-hammered candleholders are from L’Aviva Home’s copper workshop in Michoacán, Mexico, and the beeswax candles are from Oaxaca.
The black-and-white palette continues in the streamlined bathroom. The Rombus lantern is a L’Aviva Home design from Granada, Spain. Aviva sourced the cotton bath mats from A Vida Portuguesa, in Lisbon, bringing them back “by the handful.” The yukata robe is made in Japan by Aviva exclusively for the Shibui Spa at the Greenwich Hotel in Tribeca.