I'm extremely lucky to know Mark D. Sikes -- the quintessential interior designer whose talent for creating spaces that perfectly balance beauty and function is absolutely breathtaking and inspiring! Mark’s ability to seamlessly blend All-American classic style with both modern and European sensibilities has earned him immediate attention in the design community. Today, I will be featuring Mark's creative tips for decorating so I hope you enjoy and can use them in your decorating endeavors! Also, please make sure you visit Mark's blog, his interior design website, and his Pinterest page.
I always start any project with a paint palette and key fabrics. I think for a home to flow every room should feel connected to the next, have one point of view.
Gorgeous fabrics are a must, especially printed ones- I love Soane, Robert Kime, Carolina Irving, Veere Grenney, Lisa Fine and Penny Morrison prints- never ever compromise on fabrics, this is where you should splurge! Right now I particularly love taking one fabric and using it on walls, drapes, upholstery in a room. I’m even into skirted tables, especially consoles or even a dining table.
One of my signatures is antique Chinese blue and white ceramics- urns, vases, cachepots, lamps, ginger jars, and bowls- they add so much to any room! I like pieces with a slight bit of green in them- they look older!
Speaking of blue and white- I love an antique blue and white garden stool! JF Chen and John Rosselli are my “go to” places for them. Garden stools look good inside or outside, in a living room or a powder room; actually they look good in any room!
Every room should have a mirror, the taller the better- they instantly make ceilings feel higher and their reflection make a room feel larger. I’ve also been known to mirror a whole room, now that is chic!
I love books everywhere, stacks and stacks of them. The obvious place for books are on book shelves, but I like to stack them on ottomans, next to chairs and beds, on consoles- I like to stack them pretty much everywhere! They immediately make a house a home.
I’m a big fan of hand-painted chinoiserie wall paper- Gracie Studio is my favorite! I use Gracie somehow in most of my projects- the beauty, detail, and artistry is stunning! Whether papering an entire room or framing panels like art, you can’t match the impact it makes!
I love a decorative box- wood, bone, shagreen, silver, any type in any size. I love to stack them on mantles, in cabinets, on coffee tables. Another plus is they're not only pretty they are functional! A great place to hide little things that clutter a room.
I love art, the mix of art in a room- drawings, prints, oil paintings, and photography. I like to take a series and impact the walls of a room with it, especially great in a hallway or I like to cluster and group a mix of art on walls, I actually like to lean art all around to- I’m a stacker, clusterer and leaner when it comes to accessorizing!
I have these very special baskets I get in Saint Barths. I like to put one beside every door that goes outside- perfect place for straw hats, sandals, espadrilles and dog leashes.
I love a touch of wicker in every house- instant texture! Think Billy Baldwin, Chessy Rayner, Michael Taylor, Mariela Agnelli- they loved wicker too!
Every room should have an eclectic mix of chairs from different periods of time- I love a painted French armchair next to a slipcovered English rolled arm lounge chair, or Billy Baldwin slipper chair adjacent to a wing chair. A mix all in one room along with multiple seating areas- this makes a room interesting!
A canopy bed with bed hangings! Why? Why not!And why 13? Because if my friend Miles Redd can do 13, I can too!
Mark D. Sikes spent two decades working in merchandising, store design and marketing for several well-known apparel and home retailers. Building on this, Mark decided to use his talent for creating exceptional environments and launched a new career in interior design. He also has a very successful lifestyle blog, a daily record of what inspires him – “Chic People, Glamorous Places and Stylish Things.” Mark is currently working on multiple interior design projects in Los Angeles, Brentwood, Pacific Palisades, Palm Springs, The Hollywood Hills, San Francisco and Marin County.
Photos by House Beautiful