Laurie’s principal research interests lie in the social, economic, and cultural history of London in the early modern period, with particular interest in the people, crafts and guilds associated with furniture making. She studied design history in the Royal College of Art before moving to the Institute of Historical Research to continue her research. Current research interests include:
- innovation, the dissemination of design sources and the transfer of skills in the early modern period
- roles of women and minorities in British urban manufacturing industries
- immigrant communities in early modern London
- the relationship between advertising and the consumer
Laurie's doctoral thesis was an examination of the London furniture trade in the seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries, focusing on the relationship between London livery companies and the furniture industry, its tradesmen, their methods of manufacture and retail, and the spatial logic of the trade.