This Modern Life

Welcome to This Modern Life: Embracing Life’s Imperfections, a campus-wide day of design celebrating the Japanese tradition of wabi-sabi, the art of recognizing beauty in imperfection. Participating showrooms and stores will feature workshops, demonstrations, tastings, sweepstakes and special guests! Plus Local Mercato and Beautiful Things L.A. pop-up for one day only.

Free Valet Parking by the Rejuvenation showroom at Helms and Venice.


Take the Expo to see us!


This Modern Life Sweepstakes

20+ Amazing Prizes from participating Showrooms and Partners




On Helms Walk

Make our family-friendly pedestrian plaza your first stop of the day to grab a program with details about campus-wide workshops, in-store demos, book signings, prizes, and tastings. Then stroll through the outdoor pop-up marketplace from our friends at Local Mercato!

Information Booth

All Day

Pick up a program, Enter-to-Win amazing prizes, and get general news about what’s happening around the 11-acre Helms Bakery campus.

Local Mercato

All Day

Local Mercato brings back the joys of shopping by offering a curated marketplace in unique pop-up locations. At its core, Local Mercato is about facilitating and cultivating friendships through the shared experience of shopping. A place where locals can connect with talented designers and influencers of fashion, jewelry, accessories, health, beauty, and home decor. By supporting and highlighting emerging brands, Local Mercato brings the community together in an authentic way. These free one night/day events always feature music, drinks, food and fun. Vendors include Tisch New York, Legend of Lido, Sicky Eyewear, Dine & Design and many more!

Local Mercato is proud to partner with charitable organizations, donating a portion of sales from each event to support an important local cause. For This Modern Life Local Mercato is thrilled to donate 5% of all sales to L.A. GOAL, which provides opportunities for adults with developmental disabilities to increase their independence and employability.

Let’s Be Frank Hot Dog Truck

11:30 AM to 4:30 PM

Our favorite all-natural hot dog truck will be on campus with their delicious franks and brats. Plus Enter-to-Win a bottle of their diabolically delicious Devil Sauce!

sherry-yardHelms Bakery Truck

12 to 4 pm

The Helms Bakery will reopen under the direction of award-winning pastry Chef Sherry Yard, but while we are under construction, come check out the Helms Vintage panel truck and purchase a preview of some delicious bakery treats. Plus get a free die-cut paper Helms Coach while supplies last!

Photo by Anne Fishbein

Retail Showrooms

Whether you’re stopping by or staying for the whole day, This Modern Life offers up design ideas and products that examine the Japanese principles of Wabi-Sabi: embracing the beauty of imperfection. Check our Directory for individual store event locations, food, furniture and fun!

Room & Board

Plant Pop-Up with Folia Collective

All Day

Folia Collective‘s Danae Horst will host a plant pop-up at Room & Board Culver City. Guests will receive a complimentary small plant with care instructions and will have the opportunity to purchase larger plants to incorporate as decor elements into their homes. Plus Enter-to-Win an in-store giveaway of an Era Cone Planter potted with a plant from Folio Collective and a set of Anya Nesting Bowls!

Scandinavian Designs

Coffee and a Danish

All Day

Pop over to Scandinavian Designs for a little Danish hospitality. Enjoy coffee and delicious desserts from Copenhagen Pastry. While you’re there, Enter-to-Win a $500, $250 and $100 gift certificate.

Sonder Living

within H.D. Buttercup

Summer Soirée

All Day

Come celebrate the unofficial start to summer and viewing of new collections with Sonder Living‘s Summer Soirée. Sonder Living will be hosting with refreshments, a free succulent bar by Big Red Sun Venice and printed sugar cookies by Modern Bite. Enter-to-Win an African Juju feathered headdress perfect for a pop of color and texture on any wall.

Harbour Outdoor

Ice Cream and Aussie Coffee Stand: Save The Great Barrier Reef for All Its Beauty

11 AM to 3 PM

Join Harbour Outdoor for free ice cream and Aussie brewed coffee, and enjoy 15% off purchases for the day during This Modern Life. To aid in Harbour’s mission to protect the Great Barrier reef, a percentage of sales will be donated towards the Great Barrier Reef Foundation. Beauty lies in the diversity and unique marine life found in Australia’s 3000 reef system and Harbour is dedicated to its preservation. Also, Enter-to-Win a free “At-Home” one hour design consultation with the Harbour team! (Consultation Offer valid until July 1st, 2017.)

Kohler Signature Store

Unpredictable Beauties

12 to 3 pm

Visit the Kohler Signature Store to experience the natural and timeless gallery of Kallista living faucet finishes and Kohler Surfaces curated stones. Kohler will feature some of earth’s most exotic marbles and celebrate a design philosophy where change and variation is not only fascinating, but beautiful.  Enjoy jewel-toned martinis and Enter-to-Win a Kallista One Unlacquered Brass kitchen faucet.


Designer Christopher Kennedy Pops Into Rejuvenation

11 AM to 4 PM

Rejuvenation invites you to meet designer, author and philanthropist Christopher Kennedy for a discussion highlighting his vintage mid-century work. Signed copies of his new book Making Mid-Century Modern and his last book California Modern will be available for purchase. Enjoy music, refreshments, and Christopher’s designer charm. Plus Enter-to-Win a signed copy of Mr. Kennedy’s book Making Mid-Century!

H.D. Buttercup

Foraging is the New Gardening

12 to 1:30 PM

Visit H.D. Buttercup to find new and exciting ways to freshen up your space. Author of FORAGED FLORA, Louesa Roebuck, will sign copies of her book and share ideas about creating seasonal, local and foraged floral arrangements for your home. Enter-to-Win a $250 gift card, valid at any H.D. Buttercup location. RSVP HERE

Photo by Laurie Frankel. Book published by Ten Speed.

H.D. Buttercup

Howling Juice Pop-Up

12 to 3 PM

Enjoy complimentary pressed juices inside the H.D. Buttercup showroom! Howling Juice is a California company owned and operated by three sisters native to Los Angeles. After “practicing what they preach” and embracing a healthy lifestyle based on juicing for more than 15 years, the sisters founded Howling Juice to share their passion and deep knowledge on the benefits of juicing with the world.

The Rug Warehouse

Carpet Weaving and Repair is an Art Form

2 to 4 PM

The Rug Warehouse showcases their rug weaver and repair expert Karim, who will restore an old hand-knotted carpet on the spot! Watch this therapeutic display of ancient art while learning about the possibilities of bringing new life to your old rug. Plus don’t miss your chance to Enter-to-Win a Vintage Turkish Style Flatweave Kilim!  RSVP HERE

Arcana: Books On The Arts

Queer Threads Book Signing + Exhibition with Author John Chaich and Other Artists

4 to 6 pm

Join us for a celebration and book signing of QUEER THREADS: CRAFTING IDENTITY AND COMMUNITY by John Chaich and Todd Oldham at Arcana. The book spotlights an international, intergenerational, intersectional mix of thirty artists who are remixing fiber craft traditions, such as crochet, embroidery, quilting, and sewing, while reconsidering the binaries of art and craft, masculine and feminine, and gay and straight. Queer Threads is not just an exploration of fiber art and crafts, but also a celebration of the creativity, diversity, and vibrancy of contemporary queer culture. Bar + Garden will be mixing a special cocktail for the occasion. Plus enter a silent auction for a limited edition embroidered tote by Buenos Aires artists “Chiachio and Giannone”.  RSVP HERE

In The Design Center

Join us in our to-the-trade Design Center at 8745 Washington Boulevard for pop-up installations, refreshments and a lively discussion with KCRW’s Frances Anderton.

Carl Hansen & Søn

A Curated Danish Designer Trunk Show + Sample Sale

All Day

Carl Hansen & Søn is hosting a Sample Sale of pieces from the showroom floor, featuring a range of iconic designs from Hans J. Wegner, Ole Wanscher, Kaare Klint and more at up to 70% off. In addition to CHS icons, there will also be a Designer Trunk Show, showcasing contemporary products hand-picked to represent the modern Danish aesthetic. Featuring home accessories, jewelry, fashion, and more. To top it off, Enter-to-Win a CH24 Wishbone Chair!

Beautiful Things LA Comes to Helms

All Day

Beautiful Things L.A., Los Angeles’ premiere mobile retail boutique, parks outside the Helms Design Center on Washington Boulevard in their sleekly renovated, vintage Bluebird School Bus. BT-LA shuttles eclectically curated accessories, home goods, and apothecary items all across the city. Inspired by Southern California design and culture, they seek to promote independent makers and artisans from both the United States, and across the world.

L.A. GOAL Presents “The Not So Perfect Show”

All Day

For many of us the fear of imperfection halts the creative process. In contrast, The Artists of Inside Out Productions create without hesitation. L.A. GOAL presents an integrated art exhibit: The Not So Perfect Show. The exhibit will feature the artwork of both L.A. GOAL artists and staff. What are you able to create when you move through and past your image of perfection?


12 to 3 pm

Wander through the Vitra showroom to experience their dedication to creative, functional and leading-edge design. Plus Enter-to-Win an unmistakable design icon – the Panton Limited Edition cantilevered chair in an eye-popping Sunlight color and an Allstar Task Chair – a tool for offices that want to break with the “nine-to-five” routine.’

Music, Demonstration, and Art Workshop with Beautiful Oops Author, Barney Saltzberg

1 to 3 PM

Through a musical presentation and art demonstration, Beautiful Oops children’s book author and illustrator Barney Saltzberg gives us permission to embrace our
 mistakes and see what masterpiece emerges from that moment of imperfection. Plus you’ll learn how to turn recycled trash into a treasured piece of art to take home!  RSVP HERE

Louis Poulsen

Lighting 101 with Louis Poulsen Experts

1:30 to 2:00PM

Experience the influence of Danish lighting design during a 30-minute demonstration with Louis Poulsen experts explaining how to choose proper lighting for a space. Take a photo with one of your favorite LP table lamps and Enter-to-Win an AJ table lamp, NJP table lamp, or a Panthella Mini table lamp in the color of your choice!  RSVP HERE

Architecture and Music: The Imperfection of Perfection

3 to 4 PM

Join us for a presentation and conversation with award-winning architect, Anthony Poon. In 1829, Goethe stated that “Music is liquid architecture; Architecture is frozen music.” Music and architecture are the two languages through which Mr. Poon can speak to an audience. Whether playing a work of Chopin for a friend or designing a church, he is framing a story—for a solitary soul or for hundreds. And in music and architecture, impermanence and imperfection define beauty and authenticity. Mr. Poon tells us, “As it says on the tag that comes with my jeans, ‘Variations and changes in color and surface are not defects of the material, but considered to be part of the fabric’s natural beauty’. Enter-to-Win a signed copy of his new book, Sticks & Stone / Steel & Glass: One Architect’s Journey.  RSVP HERE


Can Zumthor Build a Zumthor Project in Los Angeles?

4 to 5 pm

Peter Zumthor’s work in Europe relies for its beauty in part on highly crafted, natural materials that retain their imperfections. He wants to realize a similar effect in L.A. Will he be able to, given the Los Angeles tradition of throwaway structures, decorative facades and an aesthetic inspired by cheap, utilitarian materials? Join Frances Anderton, host of KCRW’s Design and Architecture, and guests for a discussion about Peter Zumthor’s proposal for the LACMA expansion.

Limited Seating Available! RSVP HERE

Photo of Frances by David Harry Stewart

Michael Lehrer
Michael B. Lehrer, FAIA founded his practice, Lehrer Architects LA, in his native Silverlake District of Los Angeles. His work, from the intimate to the monumental, is grounded in the idea that beauty is a rudiment of human dignity. He designs for community with a reverence for light and space. Delight is a matter of extreme gravitas in the work.

Joan Barton
‘General contractor’ and ‘artist’ are both apt descriptions of Joan Barton, Founder and Owner of Dirty Girl Construction, Inc.  Following study at the DeCordova Museum School, Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts, Parson’s The New School of Design, and Berklee College of Music, Barton worked as a composer. In 2002 Joan altered career paths to explore the more tactile pursuits of construction and design.

John Kaliski, AIA
John Kaliski is Principal of Los Angeles-based John Kaliski Architects and also teaches urban design graduate studios at UCLA’s Luskin School of Public Affairs’ Department of Urban Planning. His office’s projects range from metropolitan-scale plans, to urban streetscapes, to infill architecture, each shaped by a commitment to realize vitality in daily life. In 1999 and 2009 Monacelli Press published his essays in Everyday Urbanism.

WestEdge Design Fair Closing Reception

5 to 6 PM

WestEdge Design Fair invites you to a closing reception with champagne and tasty bites. Enjoy networking and refreshments following KCRW’s Design Dialogue with Frances Anderton. Plus enter to win 2 VIP passes to WestEdge, October 19-22 at Santa Monica’s Barker Hangar.

In The Neighborhood

Timothy Oulton Bowler March

1 to 3 pm

Keep your eye out for the dapper and distinguished Timothy Oulton entourage as they march through the neighborhood handing out coasters and bringing their British flair outside the H.D. Buttercup furniture showroom. Share your snaps of the chaps in bowler hats by tagging #timothyoulton on Instagram.

Trunk Club

2 to 2:30 pm

Please join some of Trunk Club‘s top stylists at their Culver City clubhouse located at 8833 National Boulevard and learn how to build out a wardrobe for both men and women. You’ll enjoy some refreshments and look at the 10 essentials for every closet as well as some of this summer’s best looks. You and a friend will also be entered to win a shopping appointment with one of our stylists, $100 gift card each, and a bottle of champagne.  RSVP HERE

Trunk Club was started to solve a simple problem: shopping for clothes in stores is overwhelming and inconvenient. With Trunk Club, you’ll discover great clothes that are perfect for you without ever having to go shopping. They combine top brands, expert service, and unparalleled convenience to deliver a highly personalized experience that helps you look your best.

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