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Owner, Erika Winters® Design
Los Angeles, CA
Los Angeles, CA
Design runs through Erika Winters´veins. Her passion is to enrich everyday life with sophisticated, chic and timeless design.She is a perfectionist, and her goal in interior and furnishings design is to create a calm and comfortable urbane feeling and environment. Also, she specializes in reconditioning used furniture converting into unique objects for special places. Erika Winters is extending her influence beyond Mexico City and is already beginning to make her mark in Los Angeles.
THE LOVE OF FURNITURE Erika Winters has worked for several years reconditioning furniture, converting it into wonderful and comfortable works of art.Erika starts by extracting the furniture’s essence and giving it a revitalizing quality, thus turning everyday surroundings at home into interesting and chic new spaces.When she sees a piece of furniture,she finds its character and recognizes its potential, and then immediately visualizes it as a finished piece. Next, she redesigns it,helping it to express itself, giving it a new lease of life and making it unique with a new personality.She has an instantaneous relationship with her work,it’s love at first sight.Instinctively,Erika desires to hold, transform and breathe new life into these objects.This brings Erika into very close contact with the furniture and the spaces which she designs and decorates. As a result, people can identify and enjoy living with them, sharing this taste with customers and enabling them to project themselves with her through the furniture, in other words, creating a mutual understanding through appreciation of the past and playful qualities of the pieces. As Erika says,“I’m lucky to work for sensitive people! And above all,I consider myself to be my own first customer.”There are endless possibilities when reconditioning furniture, no matter its state of repair.Furniture and people are similar, daily wear and tear takes its toll.Values taught to us as children become outdated, and although they lose relevance as time goes by, they quietly keep their memory, marked by use and the passage of time.Her furniture shows the longing for what we have passed by, left, thought, lost or let go, that old warmth of certain values that have been lost, positively modernized advantages, a set of values fertilized with the furniture it has reached. When rescuing a piece of furniture,Erika makes it as vivid and modern as its surroundings, picking up on something that she had or felt near - so that anyone who can identify with it and its history can enjoy it again, converting it into something unique and important for their house, something that no-one will find ever, anywhere else.She grew up in the Condesa neighborhood of Mexico City,opposite a beautiful palm tree lined avenue, in a house built in 1935. She spent her teenage years on Calle Amsterdam,a few blocks from Parque Mexico which was like an extension of her house, like the Bosque de Chapultepec and the Museum of Modern Art – which had no railings in those days. Erika remembers walking through the woods with her mother,going to open air concerts in Ciudad Universitaria and “The Amazing Lagunilla Market,That’s also like a museum for me. It was a different Mexico City back then.”These are the roots of some her influences which have left a spiritual mark on her and which definitely inspire her way of working. In the 1990s Erika founded Alquitrabe, a brand of lamps using everyday old and antique objects, placing them in the best department stores and interior decoration shops in Mexico.Alquitrabe products were exported to Argentina,Spain and Switzerland;they were exhibited and sold in Costa Mesa California and in “SOHO” (New York), in “Mark Shapiro Gallery”.She occasionally still works with lamps but not for such large customers, but on a more exclusive and smaller scale. From a young age,Erika has been a perfectionist and grew up surrounded by culture,developing a special sensitivity and refined taste for good design.She continually strives to improve and develop a style which is pure, clean and unique, and this is reflected in each of her pieces of furniture so that once finished someone will be sure to fall in love with them,and as people appreciate and value them for what they are, works of art,she does not mind parting with them. Erika wants her finished work to be enjoyed on a daily basis,for her clients to feast their eyes on the genuine products and feel their beauty.“One of my aims is to create a calm and uncluttered atmosphere…yet keeping it all in an urban and up-to-date state of mind.Eventually I intend to create consciousness on our responsibility to recycle, selecting materials that allow us additional uses. This can be seen in my new “Patchwork Collection”,where I reuse fabric leftovers in order to create bold and innovative designs.“For inspiration on this collection,and in all previous ones,I try to find all of the valuable aspects in my personal surroundings; it would be so boring to see my house built as a kind of factory model, so I play with different materials,epochs and textures that breathe life into a home;after all,we are also mixtures,individual creations of our environment and experiences.I feel my contribution is to create a relationship between craftsmanship from the past,and innovation of the present day,using furniture with historical meaning in order to produce a richer,value-added lifestyle” CURRICULUM Skills Over 17 years Interior Design experience Creative and Innovative Residential Design,combining atmospheres, furniture,objects and details. Skills in project management from design to managing and supervising workers, coordinating projects from start to finish Skill in refurbishing furniture and upholstery.Excellent style and use of space. Professional background Founder Alquitrabe 1992-2004 Mexico City Design,coordination and supervision of 385m2 of office space for Marriott Ownership Resorts Int,Zona Rosa,Mexico City Shop window design for“Telafashion”appliance stores,Mexico City Initial projects and remodelling of “De Maurice” beauty parlor,Marriott Vacation Club Int offices in Mexico City, and for the Gestalt Institute, Lomas Verdes,Mexico City Design,PR and sales for Alquitrabe lamps.I promoted these lamps in various parts of the world,Mexico,USA, Spain,Switzerland and Argentina Founder Erika Winters Design 2005 Mexico City Recovery and restoration of different types of furniture Remodeling, design and adaptation of an apartment for the“Circle of Existential Studies”Institute,Colonia Del Valle,Mexico City Restoration of Izote Restaurante Polanco,Mexico City Interior Decoration and remodelling of“Hacienda Mamey Domingo” Morelos,México Remodeling of a house in Reforma Lomas,Mexico City Shop window design for “Ma Maison”CAD Mexico(Centro de Arquitectura y Diseño) Interior Design of a house in Balmori Building,Roma,Mexico City Interior Design on an apartment,Colonia Polanco,Mexico City Educational Background Interior Design and Decoration in Instituto Héctor Cerviño,Mexico City, 1993 The Institute of International Training and Quality Performance“LINKA”Orlando FL Training in Marketing and Sales,Orlando,FL Diploma in Philosophy,Universidad Panamericana Awards and Publications Certificate of Merit from IDAC Del Valle for giving the conference “Balmori: The London Chelsea refreshing spirit at The Colonia Roma” 2010 Certificate of Merit from Centro Metropolitano de Arquitectura Sustentable at the Talleres de luis Barragan for giving the conference ¨Love of Furniture and it Historiy¨ 2009 Certificate of Merit from the 2009 Habitat Expo at the WTC for giving the conference“Balmori: The London Chelsea refreshing spirit at The Colonia Roma” Writer at"Sensations" Magzine Writer at"307 Mayan Rivera" Magazine Certificate of Merit from the 2009 Mexico City International Furniture Fair for giving the conference:“Furniture: a meeting point for creativity and the Mexican designer” Certificate of Merit Architectural and Design Conference Week at Anahuac University of Mexico City August-November 2008. Conference title Style: a feeling that grows with time Semifinals Winning participant for the contest“Architectural Digest: Design Icons of 2007”in the category of Furniture Design Memberships Editorial Board Member“Punto de Fuga”2010 Editorial Board Member"Mexico Design" 2009 Vice President of Public Relations of the Mexican Society of Interior Design (SMI, Sociedad Mexicana de Interioristas AC)2009-2011 Active member of the Mexican Society of Interior Design (SMI Sociedad Mexicana de Interioristas AC)2008