Isolating in San Francisco.
Introducing Lauren Geremia of Geremia Design, San Francisco.
Lauren and I met at a FvF event in Venice Beach back in 2015. It was so lovely to meet such an inspiring creative. Lauren, who was named a Forbes Magazine 30 Under 30, holds a degree in fine art from the Rhode Island School of Design. She then went on to start her own interior design firm - Geremia Design - and is one of the Bay Area (and Silicon Valley)’s most sought-after designers (Lauren and her crew have designed the likes of both Instagram and Dropbox’s offices, among others). One of my favourite projects Lauren has worked on in recent times is the AutoCamp hotels - where great design meets the great outdoors - the outpost she designed is their airstream hotel in Yosemite National Park (as well as the one in Russian River). Lauren’s mantra is “creativity first, feasibility second”. I like this a lot. I am so happy Lauren is able to share with us a quick insight into her life in lockdown right now.
Name: Lauren Geremia
Star Sign: Pisces
Hometown: New Haven, CT
Where do you live now? San Francisco
Describe yourself in 3 words or less… Sensitive, Spontaneous, Creative.
Describe San Francisco in 3 words or less... Curious, Innovative, Ever-changing.
Tell us a bit about your work… We do interiors for hotels, workplace, and homes. At the core of our interior design and architecture projects, we support artists and are excited about fostering those acquisitions as a source of inspiration and as a concept that informs the rest of the space. We design a lot of lights and custom sofas, and we love furniture, color, and anything related to textiles. I want to paint murals for anyone who will let me into their house with a paintbrush. We would love to travel to remote destinations and design intimate moments in magical hotels. We are a small company trying to do big things with space and nice people.
How long have you been isolating for now? Too long. I got sick early, on March 10th, and have been home ever since.
Who are you isolating with? My partner, Mike. I feel really lucky to have him and our space is great. It has been nice to chip away at projects and have one another for support. I appreciate him in normal times, and realize now that we are really good roommates in the hard times, too.
What is the vibe like in San Francisco? It's quiet, but feels productive. Few people are out, but for shoppers, delivery folks and those braving the trek to and from essential work. People are getting out for a little exercise in my neighborhood. I live near the park. Golden Gate Park turned 150 years old yesterday and they installed a ferris wheel to celebrate, which nobody can ride quite yet.
I can see folks working in their home offices and taking time to pet their cats on the sills. People are more active on social media than I have ever seen. It is nice to see people wanting to help—there are a lot of smart people with resources who are trying to make an impact. And there are many people making a huge effort to stay connected to those that are lonely and scared.
Do you have any tips you can share for sticking to, or starting a new kind of daily routine? I have more or less been keeping to my usual sleep schedule and work hours, which is important for my mental health. I have also been trying to put on normal clothing and a little makeup when I have video calls and sales opportunities. The time that I usually spend socializing, I have used to make artsy gifts for friends and to organize and clean, like most folks. I also have been working to get ahead of potential small business woes by building more relationships and working on marketing materials, which usually fall to the bottom of my list. In the beginning of this whole thing, I made a huge list of projects that I would love to accomplish with this opportunity of time and focus. I have been good about trying to cross off one or two a day!
Do you have any daily rituals you can share? My boyfriend and I meditate together after waking up. It has been a great practice and orients us towards a positive, calm approach to our days. I don't drink coffee, but I am really into a warming tea latte in the morning and love when I can enjoy it on the deck. I also have been doing breathwork weekly through this particular time, with a few different groups. I think it is important to have a connection to a personal healing/regulating practice or community right now (the yoga industry will never be the same). Different things work for different people, but I find breathwork very effective.
Where/how are you getting your groceries? Delivered once a week! I am still quarrained.
Are you using a lot of delivery services? If so, who and for what?
Not so much. This pandemic has taught me that I have so much of what I need already. I have just been ordering food... and THC edibles.
Are you finding more creative inspiration in this time? Absolutely. I have been painting a ton. As mentioned, I'm trying to make art for friends, and cards to keep in touch with clients and family. I have many ideas for my home that I am playing with. Last night, I painted lampshades with japanese inks. Very fun.
What other creative outlets do you turn to? I have been taking classes. The MoMA has a few through Coursera, which have been good. I also just finished Anna Wintour's seminar via MasterClass, which I was really into. I really fell in love with her! Her advice on leadership in a creative environment was so refreshing. It was a perfect reset for me, as I think about how to see things and go back to business after Covid.
Have you been cooking a bunch? Do you have any recipes you can share? I am a vegetarian, so I've been living on a mix of beans, grains, and toasts... And trying to get boxes of vegetables delivered. I've been keeping things easy. I usually am ambitious in the kitchen, but without the fun foreplay of going to the store and picking fresh ingredients, I have been less focused on it. I did come across a great recipe through our local food trend setter, Fanny Singer. She turned me onto these Wild Fennel Cakes, which are amazing!
What is on your stereo? In the beginning of the "shelter in place" move, I reached out to my network and asked for new music recos, so I have been happily shifting through new recommendations and making fresh soundtracks. It is a nice way to change the mood up so home doesn't get boring. An architect and good pal of mine turned me onto Wim Mertens — piano with lots of personality. It is dramatic and nice for working alone.
Are there any podcasts you are loving at the moment? I am more of an audiobook gal. I just finished the Dutch House by Anne Patchett, and am in the middle of A Time of Gifts by Patrick Leigh Fermor.
Have you still been getting out and about for movement/exercise? What does that look like for you? I am pretty much housebound for safety, so I've just been here, which is sad because I live in California for the vistas and parks. Dancing/movement/yoga is so important to me. I usually shake around on my deck or bedroom for hours to get out energy and to try and maintain my relationship with my body. I love the class by Taryn Toomey. I should also say that I have been trying to dedicate 40 minutes of my day to deepening my flexibility, which has been on the to-do list for years!
When this blooming virus goes away, where will you be travelling to next? Honestly, I really want to go to New York. Watching the news has made me miss the city terribly! I am dying to get back there to support my creative friends and to see my family. I am invested in being part of really positive changes and opportunities after this is over, and I think that will take the form of immersion in our communities.
After that... Norway.
Are you a window or aisle seat kinda gal? Strong aisle.
What 3 things are always in your suitcase? I am notorious for traveling light. I like to bring things back and HATE packing. I usually bring a toothbrush , bathing suit, and always my sketchbook and watercolors.
What are your 3 favourite hotels in the world? A few favorite places I have stayed:
- 7132 Hotel and Therme Vals
- Casa De Pas Penhas Douradas: Burel Expedition Hotel
- Verana in Mexico
(Esalen Institute in Big Sur is more sacred than a hotel, but it is my ultimate unwind).
Words you live by… Have no fear of perfection.. You'll never reach it.
- Salvatore Dali
And lastly, who are you most looking forward to hugging when all of this is over?!! My good friend Kali lives about a mile away and we hang out very regularly. She is on my walk home from work and I miss seeing her as part of my daily routine so much!