Taking on a project that requires working with existing decor isn’t exactly ideal for many designers. But when a client of California-based Mark D. Sikes asked for his help updating her family’s Montecito vacation home while keeping favorite details intact, he welcomed the opportunity.
“I’m not the type of designer who comes in and rips everything apart,” he says. “If there’s a piece you love, you can find a new home for it or update it with upholstery or paint.”
Inspired by the “perfect combination” of grass and sky outside, Sikes used his signature blue and white as a backdrop for vibrant greens. In the master bedroom, the client’s ikat wallpaper was revved up with new patterned textiles, while white paint—even on the chandelier—refreshed the living room.
To help balance some of the home’s more traditional details, like chintz and antiques, Sikes was generous with natural materials. “Layers of wicker, linen, raffia, and cotton can bring a laid-back feel to any house,” he says.
Sikes expects that the new pieces will become treasured belongings as the family settles in: “My mantra is, I want things to look just as good in 30 years!”
This story originally appeared in the June/July 2018 issue of CQ.