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The Perfect Pink Paint Drenches Ariel Gordon’s Bay Area Office


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Visiting a person’s workspace is like taking a peek inside their brain. Whether it’s at home or in an art studio, Nice Work explores where creative people do all of their, well, creating, so that you can steal their on-the-clock style.

Name: Ariel Gordon Maffei 

Occupation: CEO and designer, Ariel Gordon Jewelry 

Time I start: I wake up at 7 a.m. to get my kids (ages 8 and 5) fed and off to school. I try to squeeze in a workout a few days a week before making my way to the studio by 10-ish. 

Time I clock out: 5:30 p.m. Or earlier to grab the kids if I’m on deck that particular day.

Three words that describe my space: Happy, chic, open. 

Design by Ariel Gordon; Architecture by Anthony Roxas Architecture

When I moved in: I founded Ariel Gordon Jewelry in 2009 from my dining room in my Santa Monica apartment. Pretty quickly I graduated to a studio in the downtown L.A. jewelry district and remained there until 2022, when my office operations relocated to the Bay Area. I’m so thrilled that I have space for an in-house jeweler for the first time! 

Most important thing on my desk: An ergonomic mouse and keyboard. (I gave myself carpal tunnel making jewelry very early on, which led to ulnar nerve entrapment. So now I’m very vigilant about proper ergonomics and setup.) 

What’s on the walls: I’m beyond thrilled to be able to showcase some rad art by a few of my dear friends. For my office, Sally King Benedict painted me a custom piece (I sent her renderings of my scallop-trimmed desk and credenza, plus a swatch of Benjamin Moore’s Bunny Nose Pink, and away she went). Mark Leary was a dream to work with on the upstairs workroom’s custom mobile, which helps provide movement and break up the sea of white walls. Plus the colors tie in perfectly with the large-scale David Matthew King piece and the checkered Moroccan rug downstairs. I’ve also got some special prints from my girl Nicki Sebastion and her Prints for a Cause series. And all of the tile in the bathroom and kitchen are by Fireclay. I am particularly obsessed with the kitchen backsplash that features its collab with my all-time-fave friends–slash–L.A. doyennes–slash–sisters extraordinaire, Block Shop

Current creative fuel: I’ve recently dipped my toe into other lifestyle items (jewelry boxes and key chains to name a few), and that process has been so inspiring for me. 

What I turn to when I’m stuck: Good music. Fresh air. Tasty food. Basically anything that can help my brain get a reset. 

Favorite pen: I like my pens sort of juicy. I use a Pilot Blue V Sign 2mm for paperwork. If I’m doing a project that needs me to toggle through rounds of revisions, then I use Paper Mate Felt Tip Marker Pens in an assortment of colors.

Best notebook: I’m pretty loyal to a classic Moleskine, but sometimes I’ll switch it up if I see something cute and bright.

Work bag I carry every day: Either a Liberty oilcloth floral tote that I got ages ago at Merci Paris or an L.L.Bean camo bag with some neon pom-poms thrown on for fun. 

Technology I can’t live without: I guess my phone. Cringe. 

Desk chair that I could (and do) spend hours in: I bought a dozen of these supercomfy Herman Miller Sayl chairs from a local office liquidator for a steal. Like I said, ergonomics is important. 

Conference table to convene around: Blu Dot Strut 75-Inch in grasshopper.

When I’m not at my desk, I post up at: The adorable showroom banquette covered in Schumacher fabric. It’s so bright and happy. 

How I fight the 3 p.m. slump: Snacks, snacks, snacks. 

Ideal office snack? We always have a variety on hand. Think: gummy treats (i.e., Swedish candy and Mamba), nuts, fruit, hard-boiled eggs, cheese and crackers, biscotti. 

Biggest splurge that was worth it: The custom marble-topped desk and credenza in my office. The room has awkward dimensions and a weird precast column in one of the corners. I couldn’t find any furniture to go in there that felt correct, so I decided to have it made. It fits like a glove, is painted in the same pink as the rest of the room (including the ceiling), and has chic brass ribbon handles from Beata Heuman and scalloped trim because I never met a scallop I didn’t like. It hides my computer tower, printer, and all the cables. It makes me smile every time I see it. 

Preferred soundtrack: AGJ Spotify playlists. I make a new one every quarter or so. 

Hair and Makeup by Lindsey Smith

Things I Can’t Work Without





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