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A More Beautiful Life, With Mark D. Sikes

The Designer Discusses His New Book, Kips Bay, and the Power of Home in a Pandemic

BY // 09.29.20

With the launch of his second book from Rizzoli, More Beautiful: All-American Decoration, and the unveiling of his room in the inaugural Kips Bay Decorator Show House Dallas, PaperCity chats with designer Mark D. Sikes.

Your follow-up book to Beautiful is aptly named. What will we see?

More Beautiful is a continuation of the story we started in the first book — but instead of being broken up by color, it’s organized by style of homes. Within these styles are common threads that further define our firm’s direction and sensibility.

Your design sense has really seeped into America’s subconscious after your work on Nancy Meyers’ movies and Reese Witherspoon’s Draper James boutiques. 

I think our signature style is one that people relate to because it’s approachable and authentic. It makes me happy to see people’s positive response to it. We all know everyone loves blue and white!

KipsBay_Day1_0032-COMP (Photo by Stephen Karlisch)
Mark D. Sikes’ living room for Kips Bay Decorator Show House Dallas, is named Casa Fiorentina, and was inspired by the iconic Villa La Fiorentina in Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat, built in 1917 and most famously owned by Rory Cameron then by Mary Wells Lawrence and Harding Lawrence, decorated by Billy Baldwin. Antique dhurrie rug from Guinevere Antiques, London. (Photo Douglas Friedman)

How have your Texas roots influenced your design sense?

When I think of Texas, I think traditional, fun, and glamorous. I think our design has the best combination of those elements.

Your work is so beautiful but also classic and cozy — do you think more people are connecting with your work in the pandemic as they spend more time in their own spaces?

I think in general people are finding their homes to be their sanctuaries. What is important now is that people feel comfortable in their homes and that they surround themselves with what they love, which is ultimately what our firm’s work is all about.

One design object from a Mark D. Sikes collection that could totally transform a space.

I think it’s more about the mix than any one piece. But if I had to pick something, I think having a lot of books can transform a space. So, there’s always a need for lots of copies of More Beautiful!

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What’s on the drawing board?

We’re entering our 10th anniversary year as a design firm, so we have a lot to celebrate. In addition to the new book launch, we were excited to  design the living room of the Kips Bay Decorator Show House Dallas. We have more collections lined up with Hudson Valley, Annie Selke, and Schumacher, and a new outdoor lighting collection with Troy. But, always, the thing we love most is working with clients. We’re lucky to have projects all across the country, from Palm Beach to Sun Valley.

More Beautiful: All-American Decoration ($45) is now available for purchase.

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