Wendy Haworth Design Serves Up Impeccable Commercial Appeal
When you walk through the door of Café Gratitude in Venice, you immediately feel at home. The restaurant has a relaxed, clean vibe that invites people to meet friends for a bite to eat or to chat for a few hours.
This inviting effect is one of the hallmarks of Wendy Haworth Design’s commercial style. From Café Gratitude in Venice to her newly finished project, Winsome in Echo Park, the designer has made a name for her company by using fresh neutrals and warm woods. In many of her projects, the strategically placed colorful accents pop against the natural-hued surroundings without being overwhelming.
The words Love, Serve, and Remember are scripted on the wall, harking back to Café Gratitude’s mantra of nourishment—for ourselves, our communities, and our spirit.
In her previous life before turning to commercial interior design, Haworth was a photo editor for the likes of Elle and Vogue. It was in these positions that she honed her eye for style, giving her the ability to instantly recognize what works in a space and allowing her to create photo-perfect interiors for her commercial and residential clients.
We are firm believers that design can foster personality in spaces. The use of color can inject mood, and materials and lines bring character. In short, architecture and design breathe life into commercial structures, giving them an ambience all their own.
Venice’s Café Gratitude, on Rose Avenue, is one such place. A Zen retreat, the restaurant offers respite after a long day, served up with amazing vegetarian cuisine. Café Gratitude was built on the mission of nourishment, achieved through environmentally conscious products and food made with love. “Our food and people are a celebration of our aliveness,” reads the restaurant’s website. And so is the cafe’s earthy design.
Soft-hued pillows beckon you to curl up and stay a while as you enjoy a vegan burrito bowl or juice with a friend.
Wendy Haworth Design expertly crafted a blend of welcoming whites and stable woods—brilliant in the sunlight streaming through the large windows. Soft-hued pillows beckon you to curl up and stay a while as you enjoy a vegan burrito bowl or juice with a friend. Touches of nature-inspired green can be found in the tile above the kitchen area as well as in the plants adorning the tables. Moroccan-style lanterns and wicker furniture finish the atmosphere of shabby chic meets old-world charm.
The words Love, Serve, and Remember are scripted on the wall, harking back to Café Gratitude’s mantra of nourishment—for ourselves, our communities, and our spirit. Even the dish names themselves evoke a sense of positive affirmation, with names like Flourishing (a braised asparagus appetizer) and Humble (an Indian curry bowl). All of these touches leave visitors inspired and full.
Great design must meet the goal of the space—its intended use. This is especially true of commercial design. Winsome restaurant owners Marc Rose and Med Abrous wanted their eatery to be the neighborhood spot for gathering and dining.
“The idea of a neighborhood restaurant is very natural to us,” Rose said in an interview with the Los Angeles Times. “We want people to come here not only three times a week but three times a day.”
Wendy Haworth Design’s concept for the restaurant facilitates Rose and Abrous’ vision. The midcentury-style cane chairs beg you to take a seat. The soft pendant lighting highlights a palette of natural tones, from crisp white to warm brown to calming gray. The restaurant’s wall-mural focal piece was inspired by Phil Dike’s 1938 watercolor painting Sunshine in Echo Park. It provides just enough color to make the space visually interesting without being garish. The extremely local nod of the painting, paired with the diner booths, adds to the homey feel of the restaurant.
Winsome is winning over patrons, culinary connoisseurs, and designers alike. Recently it was nominated one of the best-designed restaurants for 2016 by Bon Appétit. The website Eater LA wrote, “Simply put, is there a better-looking restaurant opening this year in Echo Park?”