Idea House Living Room by Mark D. Sikes

2016 Idea House
Photo: Mary Katherine Morris

Texas-born designer Mark D. Sikes created a neutral tone in this classic living room creamy pallette, soft patterns, and a symmetrical floor plan.Filled with plenty of seating, plenty of lighting, and plenty to talk about, this living room's details will keep guests talking about it non-stop. Designer Mark D. Sikes created two separate seating areas to create more intimate seating area for smaller groups. Sikes has an eye for pattern, antiques, and collecting that's impossible to miss. Sikes says, "I like for rooms to feel collected— not decorated. I always say that perfect is not perfect." The collection of different textures and layers of the room create the right casual and elemental touch.

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Give a Room a Backbone

Brown Leather Chair
Mary Katherine Morris

First, Sikes placed a long console dead-center in the middle of the room and then set matching sofas against it. This smart move anchors the symmetrical furniture arrangment. The antique leather arm chair hides the console's legs and can easily be pulled into either seating area as needed.

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Demilune Details

Black Side Table
Mary Katherine Morris

No area in a well-decorated living room should go unnoticed. Sikes placed matching black lacquer demilunes with bone inlay mirrors and Rubeck duck prints above them on either side of the room's grand French doors. He accessorized the tables with vases, wooden boxes, and additional lamps.

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Sleek Cocktail Table

Brass Glass Side Table
Mary Katherine Morris

End tables don't always need to have extra storage nor do they need to be big enough to hold lamps. This simple drink table is subtle enough to live among all the other details but sturdy enough to hold a drink.

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Timeless Lighting

Bronze Floor Lamp
Mary Katherine Morris

This bronze lamp looks like something that could have been in your grandparent's living room decades ago and it can also live in your living room for decades to come. These small details achieve the elegant, timeless touches Sikes intended.

05 of 18

Room for All

White Chest Coffee Table
Mary Katherine Morris

Extra seating was important to Sikes' design. Instead of having only one central seating area, he said it was important that he "maximize the space to seat as many people as possibe" by adding another couch and plenty of comfortable chairs all around. The area closest to the fireplace was designed for smaller, more private conversations.

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Coffee Table Chic

Coffee Table Accessories
Mary Katherine Morris

Sikes says stacks of books, collections and striped sofas were all inspiration drawn from a vintage 1986 living room. On the coffee tables, he curated neat stacks of interesting titles and curios so that guests can easily find something that interests them.

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Conversation Pieces

Coffee Table Seating
Mary Katherine Morris

The neat stacks of books give guests plenty of options to peruse without feeling like they have to walk around the room. The pop of color from the fresh pears also breathe life into the space.

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An Unusual Gallery

Duck Print Gallery Wall
Mary Katherine Morris

Hanging elaborate paintings aren't the only way to make a room look elegant. These bird prints by Swedish naturalist, Olaf Rudbeck, make the space very unique and much livelier.

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Hidden Storage

Glass Bookcase
Mary Katherine Morris

Just because there are bookshelves in the living room doesn't mean they must be filled with books. Sikes added curtains inside the glass doors creating concealed storage. A TV would be the perfect thing to hide away in here.

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A Grand Balance

Living Room Porch Exit
Mary Katherine Morris

Sikes designed a welcoming view for guests when they enter the living room: grand French doors which open to the porch flanked by two demilune vignettes with mirrors and then bookended by low-key, luxe batik-esque window treatments. The super symmetrical arrangement puts the room (and the viewer) in balance immediately.

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Light Up the Room

Marianna Sand Sofa
Mary Katherine Morris

Extra lighting from more than one source is important in a space this large and with so much seating. Smaller lamps like these can offer a more intimate setting in different parts of the room without flooding the room with too much or uncessary light.

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Nature & Neutrals

2016 Idea House
Mary Katherine Morris

Although the patterns and textures are different, the neutral tones pull this living room together. The dark coffee table gives gravity in the ethereal space.

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Accessorize, Accessorize, Accessorize

Side Table Accessories
Mary Katherine Morris

The large pieces of furniture in the living room indeed draw the eye, but it is the small details that capture the heart. Sikes put thought into every little detail in every corner of the room, like this small tortoise dish, and that is what truly makes it eye catching.

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Gracious Club Chairs

Club Chairs
Mary Katherine Morris

These Henredon armchairs offer a variety of seating throughout the room, and guests can have an intimate conversation with the person across or a larger conversation with guests sitting on the sofa.

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Blending Patters is OK

Striped Neutral Sofa
Mary Katherine Morris

This room is all about feeling collected and balanced; Sikes matches the stripes on the couch with the stripes on the wall covering while also using different neutral shades to make the other patterns pop. The key is to limit your color choices when you are mixing patterns.

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Compliment Natural Sunlight

Tan Fabric Curtains
Mary Katherine Morris

Mixing patterns and prints against the wallpaper works very well with a well-thought out color pallette. The light colors in these Cowtan curtains with the fringe detailing add soft dimension to the room without overpowering.

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Keep it Elemental

White Brown Table Lamp
Mary Katherine Morris

Earthy touches like these Christopher Spitzmiller pottery lamps and the ferns potted in simple terracotta pots keep this grand space grounded and laidback.

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A Modern Chandelier

White Living Room Chandelier
Mary Katherine Morris

The white plaster finish on this Paul Ferrante chandelier mixes modern with traditional -- a theme that runs throughout the whole house. These also look a little bit like sculptures hanging from the ceiling.

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