Los Angeles Furniture Store Design Blog-A few custom furniture projects to finish up the year

Design Blog
December feels like a speeding freight train, or that's sure how time seems to be moving this month. So with one week left we are wrapping up the last of our custom factory orders and closing it down for a whole week, yeah!!
The variety of furniture designs are more varied in style, material and finish than I could remember in a long time, which makes it harder than ever to know what products to feature in our retail store.

One of the last of 2010 projects is a reclaimed lumber dresser and bookcase for a kids room. We built these in solid wood so I think the delivery guys won't be so happy delivering them in the rain.

The dresser body is built out of locally reclaimed wood from a 1920's Spanish Colonial house in Brentwood... 3000 sf just doesn't do it these day's. The drawers
are built out of Alder wood and finished in a white lacquer. To finish this piece off
beautiful chrome handles were selected by the designer.

The dining table as well as the kids dresser/bookcase were designed by Julia Wong Designs
We built all these pieces in our local factory and have to say the metal and wood dining table is amazing. All the metal trim is 1/4" thick solid iron with a distressed aged finish.

Last but actually not least because we still have 2 orders to finish is a funky reclaimed lumber coffee table top and chrome finished metal base. The top was aged and a Bri-Wax top coat was applied for protection against the elements.

Posted by jerod lazan on 16 November, 2015 0 comments | Read more →

Miracle Flights for Kids was the charity chosen to benefit from a little soiree held at Mortise & Tenon furnishings

Thursday, August 29, 2002
Copyright © Las Vegas Review-Journal

ON THE SCENE: Dorothy Huffey

Event supports flights to help children needing medical care

Thursday, August 29, 2002
Copyright © Las Vegas Review-Journal

ON THE SCENE: Dorothy Huffey

Event supports flights to help children needing medical care

Miracle Flights for Kids was the charity chosen to benefit from a little soiree held at Mortise & Tenon furnishings Aug. 22.

Miracle Flights for Kids enables all children to have access to the best medical care, no matter where that treatment is located, and no matter what the personal or financial situation of their families might be.

Often, health insurance companies do not cover out-of-state transportation. Volunteers associated with Miracle Flights for Kids provide air transportation for children and families to specialized health care facilities throughout the country at no cost to the parent or to the older patient if he or she meets the program's requirements.

The Mortise & Tenon store at 4590 W. Sahara Ave. is known for its unique furnishings that also can be seen on the sets of such popular television shows as "Friends," "Will & Grace," "Just Shoot Me" and "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation."

Guests were invited to see the new fall lighting collection: a sassy group of very small to tall lamps decked out in crystals, silk brocade and even eyelash fringe.

Debi Bedell, public information officer for Miracle Flights for Kids, greeted guests including the organization's founder and president Ann McGee and her husband Bill, entertainer Rick Thomas, Susan Houston, Sean Bayliss, Judy Robinson, Tanya Norbert and Kathleen Poulos.

Four lamps were set aside for a silent auction and a portion of all the lamp sales went to Miracle Flights for Kids. Bob Jeswald, weathercaster at KTNV-TV, Channel 13, did a wonderful job of getting the bidding up and collecting donations throughout the party.

Guest bartenders were TV anchors John Overall and Darren Peck of KVVU-TV, Channel 5. Wild Sage Cafe prepared wonderful appetizers such as warm puff pastry squares with wild mushroom duxelles and caramelized shallots; oven-roasted new potatoes stuffed with truffled potato puree; and chicken salad with sun-dried tomatoes and pine nuts on endive spears that were butler passed to guests Dr. Michael Carter, Dr. Victor and Yolanda Muro, Dr. Robert Gutierrez, Irit Langness, Robert Graff, Ken Brownlee, Tammy Foss, Nader Hassani, and Frances Lee Dowell with granddaughter Ashley Sade Holman.

Introduced was 3-year-old Justin Israel with his father, Wayne M. Israel. Little Justin has been flown back and forth to Arizona where he received a cochlear implant enabling Justin to hear sounds for the first time. Nancy Byrne and Veronica Meter were seen chatting with Felix Rodriguez, Maite Garcia, Jerod Lazan, Lynne Garcia and Juan Garcia of Mortise & Tenon.

Golden anniversary: Longtime Las Vegas residents Jenny and George Jaramillo recently celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary with family and friends at their summer home in Colorado Springs, Colo.

Before retirement, George Jaramillo was the owner and president of Las Vegas Fertilizer Co. The Jaramillos were married 50 years ago at St. Joan of Arc Catholic Church in Las Vegas.

The couple renewed their vows and received an apostolic blessing from the pope at St. Pauline's Chapel at the famous Broadmoor, a magnificent Colorado resort hotel built in 1918 exuding Old World charm. The couple rode in a horse-drawn carriage from the chapel to their summer home on the grounds of the Broadmoor.

A candlelight dinner catered by the Broadmoor was held on the patio overlooking the Broadmoor's golf course. Tables of eight, decorated in pastel colors with English bouquets of fresh flowers, were set for the 60 guests. There was an ice carving of the Eiffel Tower reminiscent of their trip to Paris, and strolling violinists entertained during dinner.

Joining their parents for this significant celebration were their children, Paul of Las Vegas, Greg of Colorado Springs, and Tina Farina and Kim Shah of Los Angeles.

A twilight supper welcome: Dorothy and Stan Bokelmann's Royal Crest Ranchero home was the site for a resplendent supper welcoming VannAnn Moore to Las Vegas. Moore was in town to perform her one-woman music theater production, "The Life and Times of Lillie Langtry," at Winchester Center theater.

The Performing Arts Society of Nevada and Clark County Parks and Community Services sponsored the performance.

Her father, Ivan Moore of Belen, N.M., accompanied Moore as they joined guests Mari and Floyd Harris, Dorothy Howard, Larry Groth, John Meren and Thomas J. Gallagher in viewing the Bokelmann's award-winning desert landscape garden. Hostess Dorothy Bokelmann had prepared a cold buffet of meats, salads and fruits. The dessert was double chocolate and orange pineapple cakes.

Posted by jerod lazan on 16 November, 2015 0 comments | Read more →

Late To Work Today

After months of saying I was way too busy, I finally took up an offer to get one of Joe's famous omelets on his sail boat in Marina Del Ray. Can't tell you how nice it is to hang out in the harbor on an overcast Saturday morning and do nothing other than enjoy the quiet of the morning. Guilt started to set in ( I was now officially late to work) when Joe offered to take the boat out on a harbor cruise so I decided to take some pics of full time water dwelling residents abodes. 
                                        The captain of this ship, Maggie

If this house is a rocking don't come knocking, oar!!
                                 ( This is David's commentary )

Vote yes on "Medical Marijana"

Fancy, schamtzy

No words

Is it Friday the thirteenth and where's Jason?

That's nice.

A 180 ft private sail boat rolled in late last night.
Posted by jerod lazan on 16 November, 2015 0 comments | Read more →

Blogging about Antonio Gaudí a once in a Century Architect that Created Unique and Highly Individual Designs Regarded as a Contemporary Innovato

It all starts with a dream and an amazing intention.

Casa Mila, better known as La Pedrea (Catalan for 'The Quarry'), is a building designed by the Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí and built during the years 19051910

From the outside I was never much of a fan of this building but once inside the full genius or insanity of Gaudi comes to life.

I have to clear my conscience about some of the pictures on this post. While we were walking through the exhibits there were lots of video presentations and I thought, why not take pictures of the pictures and this is the result with the exception of the roof top image.

This first image is of the Sagrada Familia which is rumored to be complete in 16 more years. I couldn't image starting a project and telling the owners it will take 145 years to complete. This project broke ground in 1882 and I think there have been a few project delays. Funding for this project is mostly from donations so the practice of patience has to the be realized on this journey.

What a wonderful experience to be able to explore not only the final result of this amazing architect  but also to explore the process that went into creating his visions.

I felt like a kid in Disney Land when I got to the roof top of Gaudi's Casa Mila. 
How could he articulate to his client what must of been going on in his head, the juxtaposition of very strange Darth Vader heads, twisting towers and irregular elevations with a amazing view of Barcelona.

Posted by jerod lazan on 16 November, 2015 0 comments | Read more →

Creating the Perfect Asian Influenced Plasma Cabinet for a Client

Can't believe June is now over... this whole year has been a blur. Guess
my parents were right when they said time speeds up as you get older.
So our last order of business for this month was completing the custom
Asian influenced plasma armoire pictured below. The client needed a
place to hide their 60" plasma; along with lots of electronics. After many
hours of playing around with designs, we finally all agreed on a bi-fold
armoire, based on an antique black Asian console we had in the store.

The finish on this piece turned out trickier than we first thought. We wanted
an almost crackled black finish with an aged dark brown stain underneath.
To get a worn/aged finish on the edges we used a razor blade and scraped
the black paint off to reveal the dark stain beneath.

Here we can see Moises making sure all the shelves fit and checking every inch of
this piece...want to make sure it's perfect for the client!

Finished and waiting for the delivery company. One of these day's we
will set up a space to take nice pics but it seems there is never enough time.

We made all the back panels removable so it would be easier to deal with all the
cables that are part of a high quality audio/video system.

All the hinges on this piece were hand made from brass which was a
pain when it came time to hang the doors... but when it was finished...
it looked great!

It's all in the details!

Thanks for the visit and a happy/healthy 4th of July to all- Jerod
Posted by jerod lazan on 16 November, 2015 0 comments | Read more →

There's a New Year coming..

H a p p y    H o l i d a y s    E v e r y o n e ! 
There is a new year approaching and that means change is coming! BUT, it's already happening at Mortise & Tenon! What does that mean for you? DEALS! EXCLUSIVES! AND EVEN MORE FROM MORTISE & TENON!

Mortise & Tenon is going viral! In an effort to make designing and decorating a little easier, we are putting the store at your fingertips! We are busy putting everything that's available in the store, on-line! This means that our site will constantly be changing, with new things showing up everyday! 

Want to keep up to date on what's new at Mortise & Tenon, and get exclusive offers? Sign up for our newsletter! It comes every month and will show you what's new in the store, on our site, and offer deals exclusive to our newsletter readersDON'T MISS OUT! Send us an e-mail at and let us know that you would like to be added. 
Mortise & Tenon not only offers home decor necessities, but also designs custom pieces just for you! Check out our previous blogs for inspiration, or 'Like Us' on Facebook and see what's currently happening at the factory! 
Posted by jerod lazan on 16 November, 2015 0 comments | Read more →

Pillows -not just an accessory

My favorite thing to do with pillows, is pile them on a large sofa, like below.  You can really mix it up with color, patterns, and size. 
The sofa above, is very elegant but paired with a couple of farmhouse pillows, becomes casual chic. Whereas the sofa below, ...Click the link to read more!
My favorite thing to do with pillows, is pile them on a large sofa, like below.  You can really mix it up with color, patterns, and size. 
The sofa above, is very elegant but paired with a couple of farmhouse pillows, becomes casual chic. Whereas the sofa below, is brought to life with a plum print partnered with a soft grey pattern. I don't know if I can choose a favorite. ...Mm, no, not true. I love plum, so I am biased -but still, both looks are completed with their pillows. 
 Just make sure you aren't just throwing a boring pillow at your furniture. Show some of your character and personality! Liven up your linen furniture with some color! 
Pillows are a great way to dress up the bedroom as well! 
Mortise & Tenon wants to see what you have done with your pillows! Send us your pics! 
Posted by jerod lazan on 16 November, 2015 0 comments | Read more →

Hollywood Lights

Hello my fellow designers and home decor addicts. =) My name is Kristen and I am a new Design Consultant here at Mortise & Tenon. I will be blogging from time to time regarding current trends, finds and obsessions. 
Speaking of all three, I am loving the character people are displaying through their lighting! I've taken, lately, to buffet and bistro lamps. 


Side Note: I think sofa tables are severely underrated and underused. There is a common misconception, that it is a design "no-no", to put a sofa table between the sofa and the wall. No such rule exists. Look how gorgeous this setting is! 
While taking up very little space, you have made a large statement and polished your look with a little ambient lighting. While these lamps on their own will put off a fair amount of light, having them placed next to a mirror allows the light to be reflected and really show off your place. 
I am LOVING the textured and colored lamp shades that are taking L.A. by force. While the Linen shades emanate beach-chic, which is pretty much all over my home, it's fun to throw pops of, well everything else I fall in love with. For example, the light above has the timeless characteristics from the silver and black to the shape. However, the pulling them together for a lamp, just makes it pop. I managed to snag a black velvet lamp shade a bit a go, and paired it with a dainty feaux-porcelain stand. I have to say, this is a crowd pleaser. 
I think pendent lights have been forgotten. I have no idea why, they are the best way to show off the architectural details, that are above the usual eye level. I adore the one shown above. While the shape is traditionally formal, the finish is very casual beach-chic making the final product eye catching. Not only are people impressed with your style, but are now envious of your molding. 
Oh and another side note: Wall mirrors as art. Yes. Hmm, I think I see my next blog. ;)

Hello floor lamps! I feel like this has been trending for the better part of the year, and I am having the best time with it! Whether it's a traditional wrought iron (which is always a favorite) or some industrial rod, people are getting very creative! I have actually seen through various D.I.Y. sites, people making their own lamp shades, and I must say, some of them look very tres chic. In the end, you can never go wrong with a floor lamp. 
Mortise & Tenon would love to see how you have lit your home! Send us a photo and our favorites will be featured! Those that need lighting, come see us and bring a photo of your current space, and get some design advice too! 
Posted by jerod lazan on 16 November, 2015 0 comments | Read more →

Magic Carpet Talk Part 1

A really common question I hear is, "Why is this rug so expensive, and that rug not? They are the same size, they both have detail, what makes the price vary?" 
A rug is like food, go with me on this, food is food and it can fill you up; a rug is a rug and it will cover the floor. However, there is fine dining with prepared ingredients where chefs take time to prepare your meal. Then there is fast food, where the ingredients are not so fresh and you don't have to wait more than a few minutes for your food. The same idea applies to the quality and price of your rug. 

When it comes to purchasing a rug, ask yourself these questions:

1: Where am I going to put this rug?

2: What kind of use is this rug going to get?

3: How long do I want to own this rug?

Most rugs are made of wool, so we will start here. Once the wool is sheared, it is graded on which part of the sheep it came from and how long the hair is (aka STAPLE). The thinner, softer hairs will be used for clothing, while the majority of the rest will be used for rugs. 

Inexpensive rugs are not a bad idea for porches, kids playrooms (not for babies though, you don't need them putting wool in their little mouths) or for spaces you don't intend to have for over 5 years. Just beware, you will become very good friends with your vacuum. 

However, if you are in the market for a rug, and don't plan on buying another, invest wisely. 

Here are some terms to help you on your next rug purchase:
Wool:  This word has become a loose definition for hair that has been sheared from an animal.  Wool is most commonly harvested from sheep, although may also be taken from goats or even camel.  

Dead Wool: It's brittle, coarse, poor quality wool used in production of many high volume, commercially available rugs (Fast Food).  This type of wool often will shed profusely, and render a rug lifeless in a short period of time.  Dead wool is often the refuse from combing out finer, longer stapled wool.

New Zealand Wool: Typically New Zealand wool is often known for it's longer staple, and naturally soft feel (Fine Dining).  This is due in part to both the altitude and vegetation available to herds.  It's not uncommon for a rug to have a New Zealand and local wool blend to counteract the investment of import and material cost.  

Gazni Wool: Typically found in higher quality peshawar weavings, this comes from high grazing sheep in the mountains of Afghanistan.  This wool is soft yet firm to the touch: Depending on the way in which the wool has been treated, Gazni wool often has very slippery (almost oily sides), with a crisp and strong feel after clipping of the pile.

Semi-Worsted Wool:  Semi-Worsted wool is a very solid quality wool which is retrieved from wool by the process of combing.  After wool has been combed, finer, longer strands of wool are separated from shorter less desirable wool.  The term Semi-Worsted wool refers to a wool which has been produced by one of two ways: Either the very high grade wool (after being separated from low to mid grade), or the highest grade wool which is separated from the lowest grade and then is blended with a medium grade wool.

Worsted Wool: Worsted wool refers to a process (and product) of combing excellent quality wool from high, medium and lower grade (determined by length, or staple.)  After wool has been combed, the finest, longer strands of wool are "Worsted." 

Qurk / Kork Wool:  Qurk wool is taken from the neck, belly and underarms of the sheep.  This is often considered the most choice of wool to come from the sheep, as it is very fine, thin, and long stapled.  Kork wool is most often reserved for only the finest of weavings.  Perhaps this type of wool is most commonly found in high-end oriental rugs.  The appearance of fairly untreated Qurk wool has almost a dull finish, yet very compact, firm and dense feeling pile.

Pashmina Wool:  Pashmina wool is exclusively taken from the coat of Himilayan goats.  This wool is very silky, long stapled, and very unusual to come across in exported weavings from rug producing countries.  Pashmina wool is very soft, highly sought after, and very expensive. 

Mohair: Mohair is harvested from the Angora Goat.  Mohair is often very fine, long stapled and have a silk like appearance and feel.  Mohair rugs are very unusual to come by, as mohair is a very expensive and hard to come by fiber to be used in production of Oriental Rugs.  One should carefully inspect a mohair rug for color run, as it's not entirely uncommon to find overdyeing of colors which could potentially run. Also, be careful when purchasing mohair, most find out later that they are allergic. If you can manage getting a sample, I highly recommend it. 

Chemically Washed Wool Rugs:  There are techniques which are used post production which chemically treat the wool pile of a rug to give it a softer feel and more lusterous pile sheen.  While these washes may be used successfully with little affect to the woolen fibers, it is not entirely uncommon to come across a rug which has been too harshly treated with this process.  Similarly, there are rugs which have a very low quality wool which have been subjected to these washings which make them appear to have a better quality wool than is actually used.  In both cases of too harsh a wash, or low quality wool to begin with, copious amounts of shedding will be apparent from the aggitation test. 


How will I know if my wool is healthy? 

What to look for:  Judging the quality of wool takes many years of experience, however, there are ways for even a novice to pick up on sub standard quality rugs.  Although it's not uncommon for a new Oriental Rug to shed just a bit in the first several months, there are extended cases of shedding which are a serious problem.  A quick test for low quality wool is to first thoroughly vacuum the face of your rug, then aggitate the pile back and forth with your hand a dozen times to see if wool surfaces.  If the wool which surfaces to the pile may be rolled into a ball which is equal to or greater than the height of the rug's pile, chances are you have a carpet where inferior quality wool had been used in production.  Additionally, wool which feels "brittle," "coarse," "dry to the touch," or "wirey" are also signs of a lower grade, or "less choice" selection of wool used in weaving.  In the long run, this generally means the longevity, durability and and appearance of your rug will be compromised.  That is to say, an Oriental Rug which has a lower quality wool will show signs of wear far quicker and appear "used" far sooner than that of an Oriental Rug which impliments a higher grade wool. 

Low wool grade rugs are a problem in more than just looks alone.  Wool that surfaces, more often than not, are individual hairs from any given knot.  As each hair is released from a knot, the knot will subsequently become more loosely packed in the structure of the rug, making it far more suceptible to future shedding.  


Posted by jerod lazan on 16 November, 2015 0 comments | Read more →


The ubiquitous white sofa may go dingy within a few months, but there are other ways to use white with the same impact and stay crisp and pristine for years to come.

Wood pieces make quite a statement when finished in  pure white a or contrasted against a warm mid tone brown.  Using white on the bases of coffee tables or dining tables is the perfect--and only way--to keep the color clean and fresh looking forever.

The combination of the natural grain of the wood and the stark, perfect white harmonizes gracefully on this custom coffee table designed by Nan Metzer.

Our New Haven pedestal base is at home at the beach or city in a sophisticated white and chocolate finish.  The top expands to fit a 20" extension.

Even a child's room can have white that is indestructible.  This adorable and functional bench seat hides toys and still looks immaculate
Posted by jerod lazan on 08 September, 2015 0 comments | Read more →

Stay in touch

Call us

We'd love to hear from you. Call us at 1-323-937-7654 and we'll be happy to answer any questions you have.

Latest posts

  • Burled Maple Live Edge Dining Room Table and Console

     Our client found some amazing live edge boards and wanted to design a one-of-a-kind dining room table.  Live edge slabs come from full logs sliced into multiple sections and thicknesses.    We used a burled maple with a pretty crazy... Read more →