Mark Sikes, Meredith O'Donnell
Courtnay Tartt Elias, Mark Elias
Sarah Eilers, Ellen Eilers, Meredith O'Donnell
James Taylor, Curtis Taylor
Letricia & Ronnie WiIlbank
Nancy Bihlmaier, Shelby Hodge, Anne Lee Phillips
Verna Schoen, David Hutzelman
Paloma Contreras, Mark Sikes
Gene O'Donnell, Cathy Ghobrial, Sam Weber
Patti Perrier, Alex Ashford
It was by pure happenstance that noted designer Mark D. Sikes stumbled into and then quickly escalated through the interior design world. Speaking during the PaperCity book signing at Meredith O’Donnell Fine Furniture, the boyishly charming Sikes shared his story with several dozen fans eager to soak up insights from the man noted for his comfortable yet chic California style and his penchant for blue and white.
A native of Brownwood, Texas, Sikes majored in business with little thought of becoming an interior designer, though he admits to having been obsessed with style from a very early age. The first two decades of his career were focused on visual merchandising, store design and marketing for well-known apparel and home retailers.
When the California house that he shares with his partner, Michael Griffin, made the cover of House Beautiful in 2011, friends started clamoring for his design assistance. A new career was born and now, only six years later, his book Beautiful: All-American Decorating and Timeless Style rides the New York Times Best Seller list.
Wildly popular in the design world not only for his design motif but also for his blog, Sikes has launched a furniture line with Henredon, carried exclusively in Houston by Meredith O’Donnell Fine Furniture. Asked about his favorite pieces, he allowed that he is particularly excited about those inspired by chinoiserie. He pointed to a massive armoire he designed, inspired by an 18th century piece which was the first antique he ever purchased.
He shared with the inquisitive crowd that Bunny Williams has been his greatest influence and a mentor, that he likes contemporary art as an appealing foil to the traditional furnishings, and is crazy for everything wicker, for sisal rugs, and sea grass rugs.
While perusing Sikes’ furnishings, the designer-heavy crowd noshed on hors d’oeuvres from Swift + Company and sipped on Deep Eddy Vodka and Texas wines from Fall Creek Vineyards and Duchman Winery.
Design savvy: Hosts Meredith O’Donnell and PaperCity publisher Holly Moore; plus Gene O’Donnell, Paloma Contreras, Courtney and Mark Elias, Sarah Eilers, Ellen Eilers, Cathy Ghobrial, Sam Weber, Letricia and Ronnie WiIlbank, Tim Weaver, and John Fortuna.