The Style Files: Joel Barkley


Joel Barkley is one of the three talented architects at the helm of Ike Kligerman Barkley, one of the most revered architecture firms in the country. A native of Chattanooga, Tennessee, Joel is a graduate of the Georgia Institute of Technology and Princeton University. In addition to being a immensely talented architect, Joel is passionate about his watercolor sketches and has illustrated several books on gardening.

Since forming Ike Kligerman Barkley, the firm has gone on to open offices in New York and San Francisco, taking on projects from shore to shore.  The partners have been named to Architectural Digest‘s coveted AD100 List and have had the stunning homes they design featured in top publications including ELLE DECOR and Veranda. Known for their ability to adapt to various indigenous architectural styles from American Colonial in New England to the Pueblo architecture of the Southwest and everything in between, Ike Kligerman Barkley have honed their focus on their modern interpretation of classic shingled houses for their latest book, The New Shingled House. No matter the style or application, a reverence for the past and the extraordinary craftsmanship for which Ike Kligerman Barkley is known, shine through in every brick, every beam, and every last shingle.


Paloma Contreras: How would you describe your style?

Joel Barkley: Character driven, my clients and their locales inspire the style for each project.

IKB Black and White House

{A Striking Black and White House by Ike Kligerman Barkley}

PC: Has living in New York influenced your design style?

JB: Living in New York has made me appreciate the importance of virtual environments, of escape and fantasy.

IKB Southampton LR

{The Spacious, Airy Living Room of a Southampton Home Designed by Ike Kligerman Barkley}

PC: What does your home say about you?

JB: I love the cozy.

IKB Overlook Bath

{The Cozy Master Bath at Ike Kligerman Barkley’s Overlook Residence Project}

PC: Where do you turn for inspiration?

JB: Nature and early 20th century design.

IKB Sagaponack

{A Striking Shingled Home in Sagaponack, New York}

PC: What is your guilty pleasure?

JB: I Zillow everywhere I go.

IKB Southampton

{Classic Southampton Style}

PC: Who are your personal style icons?

JB: Frank Lloyd Wright, Marcel Breuer, Philip Johnson, Le Corbusier

Frank Lloyd Wright

{The Sturges House in Brentwood, California Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright}

PC: What trait do you most admire in a person?

JB: Mastery of their trade.

IKB Overlook

{Striking Simplicity by Ike Kligerman Barkley}

PC: Who has been your greatest professional influence?

JB: Michael Graves

michael graves

{De Luwte in Amsterdam Designed by Michael Graves}

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

JB: A cabin in the woods.

IKB Shingles

{This beautiful space bridges the gap between indoor and outdoor.}

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

JB: A watercolor book and a dramatic SoHo Loft.

Joel Watercolor-3

{A Beautiful Watercolor from the Upcoming Book– Something to look forward to!}

the new shingled house

{Ike Kligerman Barkley’s Newest Tome, The Shingled House was recently released. It is wholly inspiring.}



Style Mantra: I like flaws. The best part of my watercolors is making something beautiful out of a technical error – this has meaning beyond painting.

Scent: Sun hitting freshly turned earth in the spring is the best scent in the world.

Piece of Jewelry: My engagement ring

Color I Never Tire Of: Dirty pink

Flower: Zinnias

Indispensable Design Elements: A central multipurpose surface that anchors the house, for dining, drawing up a new project, hosting thanksgiving for 20, doing jigsaw puzzles, you name it.

Dream Project: A tiny cabin in the hills of east Tennessee

Fabric/Textile: Burlap

Meal: My morning oatmeal, just Quaker Oats nothing fancy

Drink: Illy coffee

Way to Unwind after a Long Day at Work: Time with my dog #MaybelleBunkin.

3 Things I Love About My City: Central Park, Seward Park, Riverside Park

Weekend Destination: My house in New Jersey with my fiancé Josh.

Hotel: 21C in Louisville

City: New York City – I hate it more than any place but I love it more than any place.

Museum: Guggenheim

Artist: Early Picabia

Prized Possession: A painting by Sylvia Rutkoff, my neighbor, she was an artist.

Greatest Extravagance: Squandering a beautiful day to stay inside and watercolor

Go-To Color Palette: Greens

I can never have too many…Brown Le Pens by Marvy

Coffee Table Book: Russel Wright’s guide to easier living

Song that Always Puts Me in a Great Mood: Guantanamera

Actor/Actress: Chris Pratt

Risk Worth Taking: A rescue dog, my Maybelle Bunkin, a Treeing Walker Coonhound from Tennessee

Rule to Break: Resale Value

Movie Set Design: It’s TV but Rock Hudson’s house in McMillan & Wife

Paloma Signature

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