“I didn’t realize how much of a California designer I was until I traveled to New York,” furniture designer Eric Trine says. Born and raised in Long Beach, Trine (pronounced like “wine,” in case anybody’s asking) spent much of his youth immersed in California culture. “I’m totally an Orange County beach kid,” he says. Summer breaks found him driving around with friends, enjoying the typical In-N-Out burger, and going snowboarding and surfing all in one day. “The most expensive furniture in my home growing up was our outdoor furniture, because that’s where we spent all of our time.”
Today, you can find Eric exploring his California roots through his furniture designs, welded steel pieces that combine an appreciation for high craftsmanship, architectonic forms, and an undeniable sense of fun. Much of Trine’s pre-collegiate design education came in the form of thrifting at LA’s various flea markets, picking up the odd retro knickknack and occasional Mid-Century treasure, and it’s clear that this is where he draws much of his inspiration. “I don’t think I try to design mid-century pieces,” he notes, “but I think that sensibility is infused in my work.” Simple but dynamic, Trine’s work is right at home in his Southern California landscape. Shop Eric’s work on westelm.com and check out the video below to take a behind-the-scenes look at his process.