Lawrence graduated from the Camberwell School of Arts and Crafts in 1986 with a Fine Art degree. He subsequently worked for the Harefield Group of Companies and the interior design firm Peter Leonard Associates. In 1989 he started his own design consultancy and in 1996 he appeared on the first episode of Changing Rooms.
He has also presented a three-part BBC special Taste (2002), about the history of interior design. His books include Fantasy Rooms: Inspirational Designs from the BBC Series (1999), Display (2001), "Home Front": Inside Out (2002) and Design Rules (2003).