About Us - Shoshin


Established in 2017 by Alexis Smith, Shoshin is an interior design studio and retail shop based in Carmel-by-the-Sea, California.

Our name comes from the concept in Zen Buddhism of shoshin or beginner’s mind.

In both our design work and in our operations, we find that the lack of preconception that characterizes the beginner allows for an openness to new ideas and creative solutions that yield the best results for our clients.

Our approach to design is both clinical and creative. We attempt to understand the way our clients live and work so that we can create spaces that are not only attractive, but also inject organization and calm into lives that are busy and well-lived. By sourcing vintage and custom handcrafted decor, art and furnishings, we attempt to bring soul to these spaces, and strive to reflect the unique values and interests of our clients.

Alexis Smith, Principal

While Alexis spent the first half of her career counseling Fortune 500 companies, real estate developers, and government agencies on how to communicate with the public, she’s long been a student of design. Whether watching her architect father ideate on a client’s new home in her youth, or moonlighting in commercial interior design for friends and family, Alexis has always been drawn to create beautiful, functional environments that are authentic to their inhabitants.

With no formal design education, Alexis can’t help but bend the rules of traditional interior design. Her spaces often mix traditional and contemporary elements, designer and found objects, new and vintage.

Prior to launching Shoshin in 2017, Alexis served at the helm of a well-respected San Francisco public affairs firm. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Political Economy from UC Berkeley and a Master of Public Policy from the University of Chicago.

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