The work of Restoration Hardware and Gary Friedman.

California-based Restoration Hardware’s CEO/Chairman Gary Friedman is known for boldly remaking the company and giving it a distinctive new vibe and look.

Last week Friedman launched his newest concept, a dramatic, sun-lit Restoration Hardware design gallery in a handsome Palladian showroom in San Francisco’s design district. It’s placed beautifully behind a tall wall and a pair of grand portals, with a terrace and sunlight galore, right in the midst of top design showrooms and the finest antiques galleries.

I have long admired Gary Friedman for the style he has brought into the management and ownership of Restoration Hardware.

The company was founded in 1980 to sell, what else, restoration hardware.

The original founder opened his first store and launched a quirky catalog because he was restoring a Craftsman house in Marin County in Northern California. He could not find all the authentic lighting, doorknobs, hinges, handles, and flotsam and jetsam of remodeling for a classic and historic residence. Thus the name!

The company grew, catalogs arrived through the mail, and stores were opened around the country. The design evolved and the company offered a classic range, with beautiful bed linens, good solid furniture, beautifully made basic pieces for any residence, and the kick of quirky gifts and accessories.

Gary Friedman, formerly with Williams Sonoma, boldly took over the company and has slowly and thoughtfully reshaped it.

Now he is making an even more ambitious leap—with a glamorous new showroom in a former super-luxe antiques gallery. The gallery opened on September 23, with a party for 600 guests, and hundreds of new designs, furniture, lighting, antique reproductions, and singular modern and period pieces.

The new gallery is at 188 Henry Adams Street, San Francisco, in the former home of Ed Hardy San Francisco Antiques. Ed Hardy, who built this Palladian masterpiece, is knowledgeable and uniquely insightful in matters of antiques and decorative accessories, and he will stay on as a consultant.