Thursday, June 22, 2017

Green with Envy

As many of you already know, I'm spend quite a bit of time on instagram. If you follow me, I thank you greatly! If you don't, you can here. The other day I came across the instagram of hrhduchessofstate and am green with envy over her amazing library dining room. Take a look:


On her instagram, HRH Duchess of State also known as Alexandra Trujillo de Taylor, shows off her Savannah townhouse and a variety of lavish tablescapes that she creates in her home and garden. This one was for this May's supper club dinner. A theme she titles "indochine". 







Yes, you're seeing goldfish in that centerpiece. Alexandra says this is her take on a koi pond. A lucite display box with a beautiful chinoiserie temple jar inside, filled with water ... a chic home for lucky little goldfish. Don't you think? 





It's actually a Behr color, from Home Depot called Emerald Forest (MQ4-49) so if you're curiously investigating the color for a green room of your own, look no further. Digging a little further back into her instagram, you can see that the room had a very different look not long ago:




The same room in Martha Stewart's "Driftwood Gray" which is no longer available. Sadly. If you're interested in seeing more of Alexandra's green dining room, or more of her beautiful tablescapes, follow along with me via her instagram here: HRH Duchess of State.

I'm off to buy a few gallons of paint! 


Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Mark D. Sikes' New Book

Those of you who know me, or who read this blog with any regularity know that I'm a huge fan of designer, Mark D. Sikes. The love affair started when his Hollywood Hills home was featured in House Beautiful in 2012.


And I wasn't the only one who quickly became enamored with Mark's work. Pictures from Mark's feature flooded the internet. They were on every pinterest page and every blog around the country. Everyone wanted the casually elegant house Mark and his partner Michael had built for themselves and their French Bulldog Lily. Is there anyone who doesn't remember seeing this picture of his Gracie wallpapered dining room 100,000 times? 


Over the next couple of years, Mark's name became synonymous with classic, sophisticated, effortless interior design. Between his feature in House Beautiful in 2012 and today, Mark's work has been featured in more than 20 magazines, on countless blogs (including mine), and in his first book aptly titled Beautiful. Here are a few examples of his work that I cling to for inspiration: 








Always busy, Mark has somehow figured out a way to build a popular women's clothing line, design an enormously successful furniture and accessories collection for Henredon, a rug collection for Merida, a rattan and wicker collection for British manufacturer Soane, and a fabric line for Schumacher, all while working on client projects, keeping up an impressive blog and instagram presence, traveling around the country on book tours and making time for Lily, Michael, and yoga. His seemingly endless amount of energy, talent, and inspired ideas left me wondering when we would see a second book from Mark ... and it appears that it's not too far down the pike.

If you follow Mark on instagram (and if you don't you should!) you've already seen the incredible photos of the Coastal Living Magazine Idea House he was chosen to decorate in Newport, Rhode Island. Over the last few days he's been hard at work with his team, finishing off these incredible rooms both inside and out. 


Here in the boys room, Mark hashtags his photographer Amy Neunsinger and "Book2" along with "coming soon". Mark's first book, Beautiful: All-American Decorating and Timeless Style was published by Rizzoli in September 2016, less than one-year ago, and is already in it's 4th printing. It's not really a surprise that there'd be a demand for more of Mark's work cataloged on glossy pages. Hours after the sneak peek above, Mark posted this:


Gorgeous pictures of the finished Coastal Living Magazine Idea House all photographed by Amy yesterday. Could the book be just of this lovely house? I mean, it's certainly large enough to have a book all of it's own, and books about one home are hardly a new concept, Bunny Williams and Charlotte Moss are known for it.

The Coastal Living Idea House in Newport, Rhode Island is large, with 6 bedrooms and 7 bathrooms, all of which is impressively designed by Mark.


Sneak peeks of the interior rooms, which open to the public on July 1, and stay open until September 4, show amazing spaces perfectly finished in Mark's signature style. Blue abounds in every room, with glorious walls upholstered in his fabrics from Schumacher. Stripes, gingham checks, shiplap ... the entire place is nothing short of spectacular, and I'm sure was a huge task for Mark. One he should be quite proud of.

Still, most interior design books have more than 250-pages, and often times just as many if not more photos. Books like An Affair with a House are elaborated timelines of a journey with a property. The home, the garden, the parties. A book on a single new build home seems impossible. Thankfully, when it comes to other projects of Mark's since Beautiful was published, there are plenty to choose from! Mark's website lists 14 unpublished projects, including these which he's shared on his instagram.

Holiday House Hotel in Palm Springs, California:




A new beach side project in Malibu, California:



A project in beautiful Montecito, California:



And this collaboration on a new build in Kansas City that he's working on with renowned architect, Bill Ingram: 



This collaboration came after a very successful 2016 Southern Living Showhouse, designed by Ingram with the living room decorated my Mark, featured in Beautiful


You'll likely remember that I went on and on and on about this room. I still think it's one of the most beautiful rooms I've ever seen, and I could easily take up residence tomorrow. (Although that's clearly no longer an option!

So what do the Mark D. Sikes fans want the new book to look like? Beautiful was purposely designed to be a smaller book, so that it could sit on the top of other books on a coffee table or shelf. Will the new book be a larger format printing? Something similar to Bunny Williams' Point of View or Hut Wilkinson's More is More

You'll have a few months to ponder on it I'm sure, but the fact that Mark has so openly shared that there will be a second book is enough to have me pushing things around to make space! If you haven't picked up your own copy of his first book, Beautiful you can look at my review of the book here and pick up your copy of the book via the Amazon link below:

Monday, June 5, 2017

One Fabric Room

Lee Radziwill NYC Apartment

This is probably one of the most beautiful, chic, and tailored rooms I've ever seen. Lee Radziwill, famed style icon, socialite, and sister of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. If you'd like to see more of the apartment, and get a history lesson on Lee, the Bouvier family, and her apartments in New York City and Paris, check out this amazing story written by my friend Joni, over at Cote de Texas

I was wholly inspired by this room when I first saw it in Elle Decor in 2009, and now, some 8 years later, it seems as fresh as it did then, perfectly lovely in every way. I always wanted to recreate this look some how, but I never had the space for it. Now, I do! And as I work tirelessly to put it all together, I've been inspired by countless other one fabric rooms. Let's take a little looksee, shall we?

Mark D. Sikes

Lee Radziwill Paris Apartment

Alex Papachristidis

Mario Buatta

Charlotte Moss 

Cathy Kincaid

Jeffrey Bilhuber

Daniel Romualdez

Aerin Lauder

Hubert de Givenchy at Le Jonchet

Michael S. Smith

Francois Halard 

Rose Cumming