Spatial Odyssey

Multidisciplinary designer Adi Goodrich’s worldview and work are impactful at all scales.

When she enters Canter’s Deli on Fairfax Avenue, Adi Goodrich is specific about where she wants to sit. She picks a booth positioned beneath the iconic illuminated ceiling emblazoned with images of fall foliage. This feature also happens to be the inspiration behind a key element at Dreams, the eclectic boutique that the spatial designer created in Atwater Village. “I’m going to have the memory of this soft light, this conversation, and the music in the background,” she observes about the setting. The beloved restaurant’s immersive vibe and storied history resonates, too, since Goodrich’s primary interest “is to build worlds, big or small,” she explains.

The Illinois native, who condenses her early biography into “farm girl, grew up in a wood shop, went to art school,” has pursued this endeavor at all scales. After arriving in L.A. with a degree in painting from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, her impressively multidisciplinary resumé began with a job dressing windows in Beverly Hills department stores. She then started building sets with filmmaker friends. As her own production industry clientele grew, she used her skills to custom fabricate everything “from the floor to the walls to the ceiling, although there’s rarely a ceiling,” she laughs about the surreal nature of sets and other ephemeral installations.

Goodrich’s transition to interiors from production, in which she was mostly focused on commercials and marketing campaigns, is a result of new ambitions that came into focus during the pandemic. In a sense, she’s unwittingly part of an entertainment-to-interior-design trajectory and tradition that includes legendary figures such as Billy Haines and Don Loper. She also collaborates with her husband, director Sean Pecknold, on various multimedia projects at their Sing-Sing Studio.

“I want to interact with the daily life of the public,” Goodrich states. “People should be able to enter spaces and feel something conceptually. It should feel like a composition or a painting.” She devised a colorful, joyful scheme for the independent neighborhood grocery store Wine + Eggs, and extended a similarly simpatico playful ethos at Dreams for the same owner, Monica Navarro. Other interior design clients include lifestyle brand Flamingo Estate and indie clothing shop Lisa Says Gah.

This past fall, Goodrich’s Sing-Thing brand debuted the Frunchroom, a furniture collection that advances multiple design principles. The cherry wood and laminate tables, seating, and mirror—plus lighting pieces that are an outgrowth of custom work at Wine + Eggs—marry fabrication efficiency and readily available materials with a decidedly human touch and humor. Goodrich and her small team of all-female makers start with pre-cut 4′ x 8′ sheets and work within the limitations of a compact workspace. This undertaking is further proof how modest resources can have a sizable impact. “If someone can afford a lamp and it makes their room more beautiful, let them have that little dash of salt,” she says.

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