- Laurene Powell Jobs said she and her late husband Steve Jobs went eight years without a sofa.
- She said the couple couldn’t agree on one, what with Jobs’ infamous attention to detail.
Steve Jobs was infamous for his attention to detail, a feat that apparently made it difficult to pick out furniture for his home.
Laurene Powell Jobs, who was married to Jobs for 20 years until his death in 2011, spoke with Apple CEO Tim Cook, designer legend Jony Ive, and journalist Kara Swisher at the annual Code Conference on Wednesday.
Swisher asked the panel about how Jobs incorporated care into his creations and about the public’s perception of him as being fastidious. Powell Jobs began answering by explaining how Jobs developed his own sense of aesthetic early in life, a design sense that also made its way into the couple’s interior decor decisions.
“People made fun of us for years because in our house we couldn’t agree on a sofa or chairs,” Powell Jobs said with a laugh. “For many, many years we had neither, mainly because there were so many details that we had to agree on. And we finally did, but I think it took about eight years.”
Swisher then pointed out that many photos exist of him without a couch in the picture, to which Powell Jobs replied, “That’s why. That was a real thing.”
Jobs was known for poring over every detail related to Apple as he helmed the company. It’s been widely reported that his exacting nature stems from his father, who taught him the importance of paying attention to every part of a creation, even the parts you can’t see like the back of a cabinet drawer.
He spent 30 minutes trying to figure out what shade of grey the restroom signs should be in Apple’s retail stores, per Walter Isaacson’s 2011 biography of the executive.
He also insisted on making the circuit boards inside the Mac look appealing when an engineer told him, “the only thing that matters is how well it works. Nobody is going to see the PC board.”
“I want it to be as beautiful as possible, even if it’s inside the box,” Jobs replied, according to Isaacson’s biography. “A great carpenter isn’t going to use lousy wood for the back of a cabinet, even though nobody’s going to see it.”