How did you get started at Dwell?
I’ve always been attracted to the underdog. I met Lara (Hedberg Deam, Dwell’s founder) almost eight years ago, and it was a chance to start something from the ground up. It had been going for about a year.
Dwell’s motto is “at home in the modern world.” How does modern design help families, especially dual-career families?
Modern is a philosophy of living. The basic tenets for us are sustainability and usability and aesthetics. It’s a very cool, simple, open way of living in the home. It doesn’t have the formality of the McMansions.
I imagine most people would think that your house must be magazine-perfect. Is it?
(Laughs) It’s not. Oh, I wish. We have plans to remodel. The house was built in 1990, and we probably have more room than we need.
What are the things about your home that you treasure?
The openness, and that it is such a great entertaining house. I love to cook, and Alan’s in the wine business. It’s such an inviting place.
You’ve helped take Dwell beyond just being a magazine to include a TV show, a home-building partnership, a design studio, even sneakers. How much of the spin-offs are influenced by your working-mom lifestyle?
Our stated mission is bringing modern design to everyone. What I brought to Dwell is that we’re really building a brand around a community of people; that’s how we’ve focused the business. We really know very well the audience we’re delivering to. I can’t point to being a woman or a mom that led me to do that differently. But I was able to focus so much on my career while having a family on a continuing basis rather than having to stop and step out and then come back. I’m not advocating that for everyone, but it was the right thing for me.