A European Inspired Backyard Brunch with Heather Taylor

She has “effortless” down to a science.

By Jenn Rose Smith

When we arrived at Heather Taylor’s house we were an hour late. We’d gone to the wrong (but confusingly similar) address in the Hollywood Hills and waited there until we were greeted by the owner of the home, a somewhat testy man on a motorcycle. He was not impressed.

Thankfully we eventually found Heather’s home, where we received a warm welcome despite our tardiness. She and her husband, Alex de Cordoba, live in a sunny mid-century home with their two daughters Scarlett and Marigold. Heather’s the owner and founder of Heather Taylor Home, a line of home goods and textiles that are simultaneously both modern and classic.

The day of the shoot she was also preparing to host a sample sale and remodeling part of the house with workers on site. “Sorry about the house right now,” she said with a laugh.

But we were secretly thrilled for the chance to browse her pretty designs in person, and get an inside look into the life of a busy Los Angeles designer. Scroll down to see how Heather entertains in her dreamy backyard (and swoon over her one year old daughter, Marigold).

photographed by kristen kilpatrick


The one entertaining rule you never break:

Always consider your guests. I even do this when I’m hosting my daughter’s best friend whose favorite food is rice and beans – I’ll build the whole dinner around that knowledge.

Your must-have entertaining tools:

Little bowls to fill with snacks (pretzels, chips, grapes, olives, nuts, etc.) I like to scatter them around my house so there’s something to grab wherever people decide to sit.

Citronella candles for eating dinner outside (nothing kills a party vibe like mosquito bites).

Always in your fridge:

Sparking water, rose, apples, berries, yogurt, tortillas, eggs

The inspiration for today’s table:

A European hotel breakfast buffet

Biggest guest behavior pet peeve:

Not exactly a pet peeve but I wish guests would’t insist on helping with cleanup. Although I find myself doing the same thing when I’m a guest!

Favorite tabletop item you own:

Baby blue dishes made by the LA-based ceramicist Adam Silverman.

What you love most about what you do for a living:

Creating a product that people get to enjoy with their families and friends.

Family traditions that inform the way you entertain:

My family is all about creating a cozy vibe and everyone who knows me knows that that’s my guiding philosophy in both life and entertaining.


On the menu for today’s brunch:

Croissants, spinach and feta pies, sliced prosciutto, sliced cheese, cherries, plums, grapes, dates, tangerine juice, coffee

Something we’d never find at one of your parties:

Cilantro – so polarizing!

The taste you’re always craving:

I spend most of my day fantasizing about chocolate chip cookies.

Your perfect dinner party playlist:

A little Bruce Springsteen, a little Beach Boys, throw in some Common. 

The best meal of your life:

Breakfast on the terrace at my husband’s family’s house in Greece in 2006. I’ve been trying to chase that feeling ever since.