Bold and Beautiful

Bold and Beautiful | Nathan Turner | DeGournay Wallpaper | Chinoiserie

This past Sunday, I allowed myself to indulge in a lazy afternoon catching up on some of my favorite magazines. I pored through the September issues of Vogue, Vanity Fair, Town & Country, and House Beautiful and also spent a good while entrenched in some old issues of American House & Garden. This morning, I am feeling inspired and recharged! One of my favorite stories from my weekend reading was this beautiful home in Bel-Air, designed by my sweet and talented friend, Nathan Turner and featured in the September issue of House Beautiful. The house is a triumph.

Nathan was fearless in his use of color and pattern throughout his young clients’ home and the result is chic and inspiring. The resplendent, 1930s Regency style home features hand-painted deGournay wallpaper in the dining room pictured above. Nathan felt the Chinoiserie wallpaper was appropriate for the style of the house, but wanted the room to feel inviting and relaxed, so he brought in a plaster chandelier and white rattan chairs by McGuire to balance things out.

Snip20150817_32

{The library is what Nathan calls “French Lavender” and features a show-stopping, vintage brass and Lucite desk from the 1960s.}

Snip20150817_34

{The jewel box powder bath features a stunning treillage application by Accents of France painted in Dix Blue by Farrow & Ball. Notice the lovely pagoda lantern by Charles Edwards hanging overhead.}

Snip20150817_35

{This little girl’s room features Vanautu Twilight Wallpaper from Anthropologie, custom headboards in fabric by Peter Dunham, and bedding from Leontine Linens.}

Snip20150817_37

{The master bedroom also includes Leontine Linens, naturally! The walls and headboard are upholstered in Jasper’s Indian Flower.}

Snip20150817_38

{It’s difficult to pick a favorite room in this house, but for me, I think it is a tie between the dining room and this glorious guest bedroom which features textiles by Muriel Brandolini and a plethora of antiques.}

Snip20150817_39

Snip20150817_36

{The red-bricked patio chairs plays host to Malawi chairs by Jeffrey Alan Marks for Palecek along with some pillows made from vintage African textiles.}

Which room is your favorite in this beautiful home? Be sure to click on the images to see them in their full glory.

Paloma-Signature

{Photography by Victoria Pearson for House Beautiful}

House Beautiful’s Next Wave

Paloma Contreras House Beautiful Next Wave

I am absolutely thrilled, honored, and incredibly grateful to be featured as the “Next Wave” designer in the November issue of House Beautiful. I have read the magazine faithfully each month for as long as I can remember, so being profiled in such an iconic feature within the magazine is an absolute dream come true. While I was in High Point last week, I attended a panel discussion moderated by Shax Rigler from House Beautiful featuring three of their recent “Next Wave” designers, Sara Gilbane, Jon Call, and Patrick Mele. During the presentation, Shax went over the many phases of the “Next Wave” since its inception in 1998 along with many of the people who have been recognized in the feature over the years including Jeffrey Bilhuber, Victoria Hagan, Thomas O’Brien, Barbara Barry, Thom Filicia, Michael and Alexandra Misczynski of Atelier AM, along with many of my contemporaries in more recent years. To say that I am completely humbled would be a major understatement. It is surreal to be grouped with such talent and receiving this honor will only serve as a catalyst for me to continue pushing myself to do the best work that I can. A huge thank you to the entire team at House Beautiful!

The November issue is on newsstands now and it is fantastic! There are several gorgeous homes featured this month, so you should definitely check it out. To view my feature online and read about my design essentials, click here.

Paloma Signature

The Style Files: Mark D. Sikes

mark

Today’s installment of “The Style Files” is very special as I am profiling my close friend and design mentor, Mark D. Sikes. Mark and I became fast friends a few years ago around the time that his home in the Hollywood Hills was first published and his blog was just beginning in late 2011. Since then, Mark has amassed a loyal following, created an identifiable look and brand, and has completed a slew of stunning design projects. Just last week, Mark’s newly redesigned home was published in the July/August issue of Veranda and I think you’ll find it to be a breathtaking evolution of its original iteration.

Mark spent two decades in a successful career in visual merchandising during which he honed his inimitable eye for style, scale, and attention to detail. Upon moving to Los Angeles in 2011 and subsequently having the home he and his partner Michael Griffin share published in the pages of House Beautiful, Mark’s focus turned exclusively to running his eponymous interior design firm and lifestyle blog. Mark’s work– whether in a room or on the pages of his blog, radiates beauty, authenticity, and genuine character– all of the same things that those of us who know him love most about him. Mark is endlessly inspiring. He is an eternal optimist with boundless energy and creativity who possesses the most generous and gracious spirit. All of that and he probably downs more Starbucks Iced Green Tea in one day than anyone else on the planet! I feel fortunate to have Mark in my life and could not be happier for his success. I know this is just the beginning!

Snip20140630_97

Paloma Contreras: How would you describe your style?

Mark D. Sikes: Classic, Timeless, All-American, Consistent….I’d like to think effortless…

2- VER080114sikes01-wm

{Mark’s stunning, newly redesigned home is featured on the cover and in the pages of the July/August 2014 issue of Veranda}

PC: Has living in Los Angeles influenced the way you decorate?

MDS: Of course it has. the weather is pretty wonderful here most of the year, indoor-outdoor living at it’s best. Because of this everything is more relaxed and easy, un-complicated, however, my design signatures, the things that I love like rattan, chinoiserie, blue and white, natural fiber rugs, and linen upholstery work anywhere and everywhere…

 Snip20140630_98

{Mark’s Bedroom is now swathed in pale blue Gracie wallpaper. | Image via Veranda}

PC: What does your home say about you?

MDS: That I’m a classicist and a collector, that I love to mix old with new, traditional with modern, the outside with the inside, and of course, that I love blue and white.

4- VER080114sikes03-wm

{Mark’s Chic Dining Room features Antique Mirrored Walls, Saddle Leather Dining Chairs, a Leopard Rug, and Antique Chandelier | Image via Veranda}

PC: Where do you turn for inspiration?

MDS: I look to the past….. I love Books and magazines (a friend of mind just sent me about 25 old House & Garden’s from the 80’s- I was in heaven), and to be honest, the internet…. It’s unbelievable what we have at our finger tips.

6- VER080114sikes04-wm

{Mark’s French Bulldog, Lily hangs out in the Tented Library | Image via Veranda}

PC: What is your guilty pleasure?

MDS: Weekly manicure and pedicures

9- VER080114sikes07-wm

{The guest bedroom received a major overhaul playing host to Pierre Frey’s chic, red Tree of Life fabric. | Image via Veranda}

PC: What is your definition of chic?

MDS: Confidence, knowing who you are, feeling comfortable in your own skin, being thoughtful and kind….having restraint…

Snip20140630_99

{Mark and his French Bulldog, Lily read the new issue of Veranda | Image via Mark’s Instagram}

PC: What is the best piece of advice you’ve received?

MDS: I don’t know that this is advice I’ve received, but I do say, “it’s all in the details,” a lot and I do believe that your own personal will is powerful, we can truly live our dreams.

Snip20140630_100

{Mark’s Breathtaking Garden via his Instagram}

PC: Who has been your greatest professional influence?

MDS: I’d have to say that Bunny Williams has not only been a mentor to me, she has been a dear friend. Her support, encouragement, thoughtfulness, and kindness has been remarkable. I love it when she reminds to put my phone down, look up, take it all in! Also, my grandfather has probably been the biggest influence on my life. He owned a barber shop for 50 years. He worked hard, loved deeply and was a gentleman.

Snip20140630_101

{Mark was recently invited to stay at La Colina, the home of Bunny Williams and John Rosselli in the Dominican Republic. The house and its owner have been tremendously inspiring to Mark. | Image via Mark’s Instagram}

PC: What is your idea of living “la dolce vita”?

MDS: Being happy- Living life to it’s fullest!

Snip20140630_103

{Mark and his Partner, Michael on Vacation in Lyford Cay | Image via Mark’s Instagram}

PC: What can we look forward to next from you?

MDS: I’m involved in so many wonderful design projects… homes in Beverly Hills, The Pacific Palisades, Santa Barbara, Presidio Heights, Marin County, Woodside, NYC, and the Bahamas… even working on a few movie sets. My first book is in the works, planning to open a store, maybe two, soon. I’m looking forward to designing my own furniture, fabrics, and lighting…also, working on designing some apparel in the very near future…and of course, the Mark D. Sikes blog is constantly growing and evolving, the blog has been the most rewarding and fulfilling thing I’ve ever done, it’s been the greatest gift to me, a gift that keeps giving.

Snip20140630_104

{A Moodboard from one of Mark’s Recent Projects}

Snip20140630_106

Snip20140630_107

Go-To Outfit: A blue oxford, white jeans, a 15 year old army green military jacket, Belgian loafers, ray-bans

Style Mantra: Have a uniform…. quality vs. quantity…less is more… a smile is the best accessory– I guess I have a few mantras!

Scent: Santa Maria Novella Potpourri Cologne

Piece of Jewelry: A thin gold Cartier band that I’ve worn on my finger since 11-10-2004

Color I Never Tire of: Blue…I’m sure that is not a surprise.

Flower: Gardenias, Vibirnum (I love massive arrangements of vibirnum), and all shades of pink Peonies.

Meal: Turkey burger with sweet potato fries (crispy) from Mel’s Diner

Drink: Iced Green Tea

Way to Unwind After a Long Day at Work: Doing a blog post

3 Things I Love About my City: The weather, the palm trees, and the boundless creative energy

Indispensable Design Element: A 17th century blue and white Chinese Bowl

Era for Design: I think today, because we can mix the past with the present.

Dream Project: I’d love to work with architect Gil Schafer, his sense of scale and proportion is extraordinary, not to mention his attention to detail, his work moves me….and of course the White House- I dream big!

Snip20140630_108

Fabric/Textile: I love any blue and white stripe…

Design Book: One Man’s Folly  by Furlow Gatewood… that barn painted blue and green is everything.

Hostess Gift: A Myrtle Topiary

Weekend Destination: Montecito

Hotel: Casa Tua in Miami, Hotel Lungarno in Florence, Sunset Tower in West Hollywood

City: Paris

Museum: The Greek and Roman Galleries at The Met

Artist: Cy Twombly

Song that Always Puts Me in a Great Mood: “Happy” by Pharrell Williams

Actor: Cate Blanchett

Prized Possession: Lily (a.k.a. HRH Lily), our beloved French bulldog

Greatest Extravagance: An Abundance of Books and Magazines

3 Things I am Currently Obsessed With: The store RTH, Instagram, and the 2014 World Cup– Go USA!

Signature-3_thumb-25255B1-25255D6