Wolfgang Pichler Design

Our Story – continued

Wolfgang grew up in the south of Austria between concrete and steel, earthworks and construction trucks. His family taught him the basics of constructing, planning and running a company from his early childhood on. Every school holiday turned into an exhausting internship on the premises of his parents’ construction company where he would carry bricks, dig holes, load trucks, drive all kinds of vehicles and later on supervise building sites and design projects. His father, a genuine entrepreneur, doer and tough role model, has shaped his very first values and work attitude till today.

Connie was born in a little village that has always felt too small for her. She dreamt big and when she had the chance to escape small-town Austria, she went big and straight to the most exciting place she could image: New York City. She totally fell in love with almost everything and wished so much she could stay forever. After a year her visa expired and she returned in tears to a country that seemed even more petite and limited, if that was possible.

The paths of Connie and Wolfgang crossed in the Austrian city of Graz, where they both went to university. What started off as a kind of complicated project, became a long-term partnership, in many ways. They both finished their studies -Wolfgang graduated in architecture and Connie in foreign languages – and got married and had two children. Ever since they have been partners in crime – privately and professionally.

Wolfgang founded his first company, an architectural studio, right after his graduation. During his first professional years he cut his teeth, paid his dues and shed sweat and blood – but he learned everything about the wide-ranging field of his profession. In the course of the years, he also discovered a new passion for interior architecture, furniture and product design, and landscape architecture. The lines of design started to blur and he went on a quest for the big picture, which would embrace everything connected to living and housing – a holistic approach. He implemented numerous architectural and interior design projects in different sectors, from residential living to commercial venues.

In 2002 Wolfgang and Connie founded the outdoor furniture brand VITEO. Everything started with a single outdoor table made of wood and stainless steel that Wolfgang designed for their own patio. All their friends loved the minimalistic furniture design, which was super innovative and not available on the market back then. Only within a few years VITEO became a well-known outdoor specialist company that was successfully operating in the international, high-class furniture market. The brand promoted a new way of outdoor living which became more glamorous and definitely more enjoyable.

Wolfgang simultaneously worked on his architectural projects and designed whole collections for the furniture brand that went viral. He became an expert in material science, product design, production methods and also distribution. His designs received the most prestigious design awards, among others, various Red Dot Awards, the IF-Award, the Good Design. Connie managed the sales department and was responsible for the textile collections. Together they presented their brand at the most important international furniture fairs and were part of a global community of renowned furniture suppliers.

The challenges of running two companies, especially one that was increasingly growing, left their traces. With all the new responsibilities and needs, there was little time for creative and innovative work, Wolfgang’s true passion. He longed for the possibility to go back to being an artist instead of crunching numbers and mentoring employees. The couple also had to travel a lot, visit clients and suppliers, events and award shows. When Wolfgang first visited California in 2014 he did not only find a beautiful place to see but became aware of the endless opportunities that this market had to offer, not only in terms of outdoor furniture but of architecture in general. He revisited Los Angeles a couple of times with Connie and the kids and the whole family felt empowered by the Californian innovative and open-minded spirit.

The couple sold VITEO, after serious reflections, in 2015 to make a new start at the other side of the world, in L.A., the perfect combination of good weather, business, active people and vast opportunities for creative minds. The restart was actually a “reboot” just with the benefit of advanced knowledge and experiences, and a global network of contacts. Wolfgang felt inspired and motivated by the large demand for his comprehensive skills and his European style, built up in so many years and fields, and immediately connected with native professionals and clients. Connie, who is very good with materials, especially fabrics and textiles, furniture choices and combinations and art pieces, has an eye for photography and set design and perfectly blends in Wolfgang’s holistic ideas and concepts.

Today they design unique homes that are a combination of their lifestyle, expertise, personality and the needs of their clients. Their focus is quality, function and comfort. By merging the attractive informality of Californian living with exclusive international design and genuine, emotional centerpieces, they create balanced, thriving spaces that communicate with their environments. They blur lines, offer personal touches in each project and design inspiring indoor/outdoor experiences with state-of-the-art furniture, technology and eco-friendly facilities.