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Celebrating Women’s History Month with a Spotlight on a Few of Our Favorite Interior Designers

March is Women’s History Month—so we thought it was the perfect opportunity to shine a light on some of our favorite women designers. We’re highlighting some of the women in history who paved the way for female interior designers, as well as some current designers who are doing amazing work in the field.

Read on to discover some designers through the decades and learn more about 10 famous women interior designers you should know!

famous women interior designers

Elsie de Wolfe

Born in 1859 in New York City, socialite Elsie de Wolfe started her career as an actress, and later made the transition to working as an interior decorator. She was one of the first female interior designers—and some say it was she who invented interior design into its own profession. Prior to that, interior design was more part of the architectural process. But when Elsie hit the scene, she established it as its own discipline.

Alive during the heart of the Victorian era, her designs vanquished Victorian gloom—replacing heavy, dark interiors with light and uncluttered layouts featuring fresh colors and 18th-century French furniture. (Was she, perhaps, one of the original minimalists??) She also notably popularized chaise lounges and animal print upholstery. She had a very high-profile clientele, including Amy Vanderbilt, Anne Morgan (daughter of J.P. Morgan), and the Duke and Duchess of Windsor.

“Light, air and comfort—these three things I must always have in a room.” Elsie de Wolfe

famous women interior designers

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Elsie’s Most Iconic Design

One of Elsie’s notable decorating gigs was The Colony Club, New York’s first female-founded social club exclusively for women. This is the space that, nearly overnight, established her reputation as an interior decorator. In stark contrast to the dark, upholstered spaces in men’s clubs, Elsie decorated The Colony Club with a light, feminine style, full of glazed chintz, pale walls, wicker chairs, and even an indoor garden pavilion.

famous women interior designers

Dorothy Draper

Dorothy Draper was born in 1889 to a wealthy family. She was the first to “professionalize” interior design, establishing the first official interior design firm, Dorothy Draper & Company, in 1923. But she wasn’t just a pioneer of the field; she also invented the “modern baroque” look, a then-modern take on the elaborate, intricate style that was popularized in the seventeenth century. Dorothy loved using vibrant, splashy color in her designs—which contemporaries often referred to as “The Draper Touch.”

“It is just as disastrous to have the wrong accessories in your room, as it is to wear sport shoes with an evening dress.”Dorothy Draper

famous women interior designers

famous women interior designers

Two of Dorothy’s Iconic Designs

Dorothy Draper’s design style is so iconic, we couldn’t just pick one design. So, here are two of her iconic designs that we love!

Above is the Greenbrier Hotel in West Virginia. It features her signature black-and-white floors, with colorful walls—both striped and palm printed. Dorothy was hired to redecorate the hotel after it had been used as a makeshift hospital during WWII. Using bright colors and oversized patterns, she gave the space a luxurious, elegant facelift. She remained the resort’s decorator into the 1960s.

Below is a residential project she worked on in Michigan. We love the bright, cheerful pink and white palette. (And those Staffordshire dogs!) This space epitomizes what we love so much about Dorothy’s iconic style.

famous women interior designers

Sister Parish

Sister Parish was truly an American original. With no formal training, she launched her own decorating business at 23, during the Great Depression—during which time she really caught on, with friends and family wanting her to decorate their homes. As her design business grew, so did her clientele. Her high-profile clientele included the Rockefellers, Vanderbilts, Astors, and even the Kennedys. In fact, she designed the Kennedy White House.

She spent six decades professionally designing—with a “cozy, old-money” look being her staple style. She wanted every room to feel romantic and whimsical, and her iconic design style certainly reflects that. She’s widely considered to have created “American country style” and is considered to be the last of America’s grande dame decorators. And, fun fact: Dorothy Draper was her mother’s first cousin!

“Behind every attractive room there should be a very good reason” Sister Parish

famous women interior designers

One of Sister Parish’s Iconic Designs

You can’t talk about Sister Parish without talking about her design of the Kennedy White House. She worked with Jackie Kennedy to give the White House a facelift when they moved in, focusing specifically on the residence. Above is the Yellow Oval Room, a space on the second floor of the Whtie House, within the residence, that has typically been used as a private sitting room or a formal living room for entertaining. Sister Parish brought in Louis XVI-inspired furniture for an airy French-style salon vibe.

famous women interior designers

Ray Eames

Born in 1912, Ray Eames grew to fame in the design world for her designs with creative partner and husband, Charles Eames. She made groundbreaking contributions to the fields of architecture, furniture design, manufacturing, and industrial design. However, she actually started as an abstract artist. Over time, she and her husband began developing furniture and architectural design—creating famous pieces like the molded plywood chair and their iconic home, now known as “The Eames House.”

“What works good is better than what looks good, because what works good lasts.” Ray Eames

famous women interior designers

One of Ray’s Iconic Designs

Is there a more iconic Mid-Century space than the Eames house? Probably not. Located in the Pacific Palisades neighborhood of Los Angeles, serves as a fantastic example of Los Angeles interior design.  The house was designed and constructed by Ray and Charles to serve as both their home and studio. Built into a hillside, they wanted the natural elements surrounding the house to seamlessly integrate with the home’s design. The two-story steel and glass windows make the outdoors feel like an extension of the home.

famous women interior designers

India Mahdavi

India Mahdavi is an Iranian-French architect and designer who founded her studio in Paris in 2000. Her work is largely in the commercial sphere, consisting of bars, restaurants, retail concepts, clubs, and hotels. In all her designs, she loves using bright colors and says she gets her playful color palettes are inspired by the classic Disney films she loved as a child.

“My work is about joy and sunshine and how you can change the mood of a room full of people when the place has some kind of happiness to it. People need color. If I can bring that into the environments I create, I’m happy.” India Mahdavi

famous women interior designers

One of India’s Iconic Designs

India designed The Gallery at Sketch in London. A tea room and cocktail lounge, this space is full of so much glamorous, quirky charm. We love the use of pink on pink (on pink) and the opulence that the channel-tufted seats, velvet, and brass accents bring to the space. This is an Instagram-able space at its finest.

famous women interior designers

Sheila Bridges

Sheila Bridges founded her New York City design firm in 1994. One of her most notable projects is that she designed former-President Clinton’s Harlem offices. She was named America’s best interior designer by both Time Magazine and CNN. Sheila has her own lines of furnishings and decor that are sold in several retail stores—including her now-famous Harlem Toile De Jouy fabric and wallpaper pattern.

“Whether we’re dealing with antiques or modern furniture, everything can be classic.” Sheila Bridges

famous women interior designers

One of Sheila’s Iconic Designs

We’re pretty much in love with all of Sheila’s Harlem townhouse—but we were particularly taken by the artwork in this hallway. We’re big fans of cheeky animal art, so we love this floor-to-ceiling gallery wall. It’s full of framed moments from Sheila’s own Van Doe wallpaper, where a deer stands in as the subject of many famous paintings.

famous women interior designers

Kelly Hoppen

Kelly Hoppen is a British interior designer and TV personality. She started her career at the young age of 16 when she was given the opportunity to design a family friend’s kitchen. Since then, she’s designed jets, yachts, and many commercial and residential projects all over the globe. Her style is defined by the fusion of clean lines and neutral tones (she’s often referred to as “The Queen of Taupe”), but those neutrals are balanced with an opulent warmth. She’s the author of nine different design books, with her first book, East Meets West, defining her aesthetic and the balance she seeks to achieve through her designs.

“I am convinced that a calm, quiet and harmonious interior can be as beneficial to health as sensible diet and regular exercise.” Kelly Hoppen

famous women interior designers

famous women interior designers

One of Kelly’s Iconic Designs

The industrial modern vibes of this space are truly in a league of their own. Despite the hard lines throughout both spaces, both feel like an inviting place to gather. And, in the living room, we love how the organic forms of the chairs sit in such contrast to the clean hard lines throughout the rest of the space.

famous women interior designers

Justina Blakeney

Justina Blakeney is a designer, artist, and the author of New York Times best-seller, “The New Bohemians.” She’s also the founder of the decor brand, Jungalow®, which brings to life her eclectic, bohemian, and global-inspired design aesthetic.

“Add life: People, plants, and pets are the soul of the home.” Justina Blakeney

famous women interior designers

One of Justina’s Iconic Designs

Full of Justina’s signature bright colors and boho style, this living room is the perfect blend of that “Jungalow” style, mixed with some modern lines. The result is a space that feels trendy but livable. We’re big fans of the way that the mix of bright colors and a hanging chair give a youthful playfulness to this space.

famous women interior designers

Barbara Barry

Barbara Barry grew up with modest means in a family of working artists. She founded her design firm in LA in 1985 and has grown to international renown. In addition to interior design, she’s developed product lines of everything from furniture and lighting to dishes and tiles. Barbara takes inspiration from the colors and forms found in nature, and she believes these restrained color palettes bring order to the chaos of life. In both her home and the spaces she designs, she likes to bring a sense of elegance and simple luxury into the space.

“Underneath all I design, lies the solid belief that beauty is a positive force” Barbara Barry

famous women interior designers

One of Barbara’s Iconic Designs

From a residential project in Hawaii, this dining room really blew us away. Though it features a neutral, monochromatic color palette, the textures and shapes in this space give it so much visual interest. It very much gets at the heart of her design style—which leans on the forms and materials of nature, with a desire to bring order out of the chaos of life. famous women interior designers

Kelly Wearstler

Kelly Wearstler founded her own design firm in the mid-1990s. She built her reputation through designing boutique hotels, and she now works on both residential and commercial properties. Some of her major clients include Gwen Stefani and Cameron Diaz. As a designer, Kelly always refused to blend in, with her design aesthetic being very eclectic and avant-garde.

Today, her firm has evolved from simply working on interior design projects to an interdisciplinary lifestyle brand that offers not only interior design and architectural services but also product design, branding, and graphics. Kelly also designs and develops furniture, lighting, rugs, and more, which she sells under the Kelly Wearstler brand. She is the author of five different design books.

“My aesthetic is about mixology; always something old and something new, raw and refined, masculine and feminine.” Kelly Wearstler

famous women interior designers

One of Kelly’s Iconic Designs

Kelly designed the Santa Monica Proper hotel, using the city’s climate, history, and iconography as inspiration for the design. With a mix of vintage and contemporary pieces, the hotel’s lobby lounge gives us major Mid-Century vibes. It’s a feeling of walking back in time, without losing and of today’s modern conveniences. Excuse us while we go book a stay!famous women interior designers

Tiffany Brooks

Tiffany Brooks was the winner of HGTV’s “Design Star” in 2013, which helped launch her career as an interior designer. Today, she has a design firm in Chicago, but also works with HGTV on several shows and writes for her design blog. Her mission as a designer is to create stunning living environments that encompass her clients’ individual needs and unique style.

“I seek out to uncover that flavor; the soul of their home which always tells the true story of those that inhabit it.”Tiffany Brooks

famous women interior designers

One of Tiffany’s Iconic Designs

It’s an unexpected move to put upholstered accent chairs and ottomans around a dining room table. But somehow Tiffany makes it work in this space. We love how the seats and patterned curtains bring softness to this space, while the large windows and oversized plants make this feel like a truly special place to dine.

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Celebrating Black History Month: 10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

The interior design community has long had a diversity problem. When you look at lists of famous or iconic designers, the list is usually centered around white European or American designers. And, frankly, a lot of men. Even shelter magazines which highlight the work of current interior designers tend to feature white designers, designing spaces for white clients. This is not a new problem, unfortunately.

Historically, the staff of many design schools and institutions where interior design and art history were taught were dominated by white men. Furthermore, 95% of textbooks in these programs are written by white men. The result has been an entire industry shaped by a fairly singular perspective. And that doesn’t exactly breed diversity. So it’s not a huge surprise—though it is a disappointing one—that as of 2019 the American Society of Interior designs reported that Black designers accounted for less than two percent of its membership.

But we think things are slowly starting to change for the better. In the wake of the murder of George Floyd at the hands of police officers, 2020 was a year when we saw major protests across the country surrounding the Black Lives Matter movement. These events caused institutions, organizations, and individuals to reckon with their own implicit and explicit racism, to reexamine their values, and to more thoughtfully explore whose stories they’re choosing to listen to and tell. And it’s also ushered in a new focus on Black creatives and supporting the work they do.

At Modsy, we know we have work to do in our corner of the world. We often talk of the famous designs of Ray and Charles Eames, Dorothy Draper, and even designers today like Nate Berkus and Joanna Gaines. But this doesn’t tell a full story of the design world. So, as an organization, we’re seeking to do a better job of diversifying the stories we tell.

So, in honor of Black History Month, we’re highlighting 10 Black interior designers—both well-established and up-and-coming—who are making bold moves in the field, along with some of our favorite spaces they’ve designed. The work of these designers is quite diverse—ranging from bohemian to classical, glam to brutalist. We hope you’ll find some new designers to follow on this list, along with lots of inspiration! Keep reading to get to know some of our favorite Black interior designers in the field today.

10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

Image via One King’s Lane

Sheila Bridges

Sheila Bridges founded her design firm, Sheila Bridges Designs, Inc. in 1994 and has worked on numerous high-profile projects throughout her career—including designing the Harlem offices for former President Bill Clinton and his staff. She holds degrees from Brown University and Parsons School of Design, has been named “America’s Best Interior Designer” by both CNN and Time Magazine, and has been featured in numerous national magazines. Sheila is also the author of two books: Furnishing Forward: A Practical Guide to Furnishing for a Lifetime, and The Bald Mermaid, a memoir documenting her childhood, professional life, and her alopecia diagnosis.

In 1996, she launched a sister business, Sheila Bridges Home, Inc, where she designs furniture and home furnishings. Her collections have been sold at national retailers, including Anthropologie and Bed, Bath, and Beyond. She also hosted four seasons of a design show called “Sheila Bridges Designer Living” for the Fine Living Network—showcasing her practical design wisdom and hands-on advice.

Why We Love Her

Sheila has designed some pretty stunning residential and professional spaces—including her own Harlem apartment, which we have featured below. But her talent doesn’t stop there. In fact, Sheila’s Harlem Toile designs have become wildly popular, especially as wallpaper. Her Harlem Toile de Jouy wallpaper is a unique take on traditional French toile patterns, but instead of pastoral French scenery, they showcase the African American experience. On her website, Sheila writes, “As an African American living in Harlem, I have always been intrigued and inspired by the historical narrative of the decorative arts, especially traditional French toile with its pastoral motifs…but after searching for many years for the perfect toile for my own home, I decided that it quite simply didn’t exist.” So, she created Harlem Toile, which has garnered such a following that it’s included in The Cooper Hewitt, the Smithsonian Design Museum’s permanent wallpaper collection.

“It’s important to have a home that makes you feel safe and comfortable, at ease and relaxed.” –Sheila Bridges

10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

Our Favorite Design

Talk about personality! When Sheila designed her New York apartment—located in Graham Court, one of Harlem’s landmark buildings—she didn’t hold anything back. You get to see so much of the designer’s personality in this playful but sophisticated space. We can’t get enough of the cheerful colors and animal portraiture throughout the space!

10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

Justina Blakeney

Remember this Tropical Boho home tour? Full of Jungalow vibes, it was deeply inspired by Justina Blakeney’s designs. Justina is the founder and creative director of the home decor brand Jungalow® and is the author of The New Bohemians book series. Her design style leans tropical and maximalist, balancing color, pattern, and lots of plants to create spaces that are both lively and comfortable. Justina was named one of “The 20 Most Famous Interior Designers Working Today” by Architectural Digest.

Why We Love Her

In the design world, the 2010s were all about crisp neturals and minimalist spaces. But we love how Justina Blakeney broke onto the scene and broke the mold with her bright, bold, maximalist designs. We love the way she mixes new and vintage pieces for spaces that are truly one-of-a-kind.

“I like to bring in items that stimulate senses other than just sight—things that you touch, things that you smell, things that you hear.” –Justina Blakeney

10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

Our Favorite Design

There’s a lot going on in this space. But, while it is wildly eclectic, it doesn’t feel messy or cluttered. The clean lines of the sofa and shelves help ground the look so that all of the fun patterns and colors in this space can do the talking.

P.S. While Justina has designed some killer spaces, what we really can’t get enough of are her collaboration with Loloi rugs. Her collabs with national brands like this are an easy way to bring some of her signature style into your home. (You can even shop her Loloi collab through Modsy!)

10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

Anishka Clarke & Niya Bascom

Anishka Clarke and Niya Bascom are the design duo behind Ishka Designs. Before becoming a designer, Anishka worked in finance, both in Jamaica and on Wall Street. But in 2006 she began pursuing her passion for interior design. Niya, the firm’s creative director, cut his teeth in the film industry, working in set design and in studio art departments, in addition to his work as a photographer. In 2019 and 2020, Ishka Designs was named to the Elle Decor A-List.

Why We Love Them

Niya was born in England to Jamaica and Guyanese parents and raised in New York City, while Anishka was raised in Jamaica by her Guyanese mother. Together, they bring a global perspective to their work, which makes their designs incredibly unique. They work with clients around the world, and we love that they seek to develop relationships with local partners, vendors, and artisans, holding an awareness of the impact of their projects.

10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

Our Favorite Design

The Ishka Designs portfolio is so varied, we couldn’t choose just one design! So, we chose two wildly different spaces to highlight the incredible versatility of this design duo. First, you’ll see their Discovery Pitstop Daycare, a space that’s a remodeled thrift shop. We love the bright, vibrant, youthful vibe of this space—perfect for kids—and yet it still manages to feel sophisticated. The second design is a beautiful example of modernist pieces in a traditional setting. It’s rare for a designer to not only do high-end designs like this, but also pull off fun and funky designs like the Discovery Pitstop Daycare. Anishka and Niya have an incredible breadth of style!

10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

Iris Martin

Iris Martin is the founder of and principal interior designer at Iris Simone Interiors. Iris first discovered a love for interior design as a teenager in Accra, Ghana, when her mother gave her the opportunity to help design their home. She was able to help design different spaces in their home and restyle spaces as the years went by. This eventually led her to pursue a career in interior design and ultimately launch her own business.

Why We Love Her

Iris has a passion for creating spaces that truly reflect her clients’ styles and personalities, while ensuring that every space she designs is both functional and well-styled. We love when a designer takes a very attainable, livable approach while still giving spaces that designer’s touch!

10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

Our Favorite Design

This “comfortably chic” space strikes that hard-to-achieve balance between being both glam and super livable. With transitional style at its core, this space feels wonderfully stylish but still super livable.

10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

Photo Cred: One King’s Lane

Darryl Carter

Believe it or not, famed designer Darryl Carter began his career as an attorney. But even then he dabbled in design and recreationally flipped properties. Eventually, he began to formally pursue a career in design. He’s a big believer in creating timeless, livable spaces. His designs are far from trendy—but they do feature a unique blend of classical and modern elements, usually with neutral but considered color palettes. He tends to use a mix of antique and ornate with simple and modern to create these timeless designs. He’s the author of The New Traditional, which unpacks his signature style, as well as The Collected Home.

Why We Love Him

Sure, traditional design might be having a moment right now—but Darryl Carter was designing traditional and classical spaces way before it was cool. And, while his designs have an air of formality, they’re certainly not stuffy. In fact, Darryl creates spaces to truly be lived in and to reflect the individuality of the person who lives there.

“I think your home should be an individual expression of yourself, so I have a hard time getting my head around generic objects. And when I say this I don’t mean precious or expensive, I mean thoughtful and original.” –Darryl Carter

10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

Our Favorite Design

This space perfectly captures the Traditional American aesthetic—but it also has an organic overtone, which brings traditional design to life in a way we haven’t seen before. Being surprised by traditional? We love that. The juxtaposition of the white-washed chairs in a formal silhouette perfectly sums up this vibe.

10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

Denese Butler

Denese Butler started her career as a wardrobe stylist but found her true passion in the world of interior design. The daughter of a carpenter and wife to an architect, she feels a career in interior design was inevitable. She launched her design firm, The Perfect Vignette, a couple of years ago and has amassed a beautiful portfolio of both residential and commercial spaces.

Why We Love Her

Denese believes that a person’s space should feel like a safe haven and embody their lifestyle. We love her personalized approach, which results in spaces that are both functional and timeless.

“When it comes to interior styling, there isn’t a right or wrong way. I believe that it’s intimate, personal, and how you choose to live.” –Denese Butler

10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

Our Favorite Design

This dining space is a Jewel Box Room if we’ve ever seen one! We love the dark color that covers not only the walls but the trim, molding, and even the fireplace! And we’re very into the mash-up of traditional and modern in this space—with the antique-style table and the mod dining chairs, along with the sputnik-style chandelier. It can be tough to create a space that feels both trendy and timeless—but this one nails it.

10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

Kesha Franklin

Kesha Franklin launched her interior design firm, Halden Interiors, in 2006 and has made a name for herself as a designer of luxury interiors. Before becoming a designer, she had an established career in couture fashion, working as a backstage production manager and wardrobe stylist for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week. This helped her sharpen her eye for details and develop her profinity for luxury. Kesha has been featured in a number of national magazines and was named a Designer to Watch by the Black Interior Designer’s Network.

Why We Love Her

While Kesha has a very high-end look (and clientele), we love how simple her approach is when beginning a project with clients: “As a designer, I start the process by listening, and then I keep listening.” Her highly personalized approach results in spaces that truly reflect her clients’ style and goals for their space.

“The definition of diversity means a state of being diverse, having variety; being composed of differing elements. To me, that is the essence of interior design: bringing together a mix of furnishings, colors, time periods, materials, and cultural stories of the individuals who dwell in the spaces. Our designs may represent the beauty of diversity, but as an industry we lack variety in the representation of the many faces that create that beauty.” –Kesha Franklin

10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

Our Favorite Design

We love the way this living room plays with color without being too in-your-face. The overall look is pretty dramatic and bold—and yet, when you zoom in on some of the foundational furniture, it’s fairly restrained. This leaves a lot of breathing room for statement pieces, like the coffee table, to take center stage.
10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

Tiffany Thompson

Tiffany Thompson worked on the creative team at Nike for almost 10 years before taking the leap into interior design. When she did, she founded Duett Interiors. She credits her New York City upbringing for exposing her to art and culture from a young age, and uses the “melting pot” of styles and perspectives she encountered there to inform her style and approach today.

Why We Love Her

We love Tiffany’s unexpected style. A mix of brutalism and modern minimalism, with a wabi-sabi aesthetic, her spaces have a new-age vibe that you don’t see everyday. But she hasn’t stopped at interior design. Last year she launched a contemporary home decor product line, featuring handmade plastic-covered throw pillows (with truly beautiful fabric underneath) inspired by her grandmother.

“Chasing perfection is not the ethos I mirror my style on. It’s imperfection that is beautiful and using materials and objects that have stood the test of time.” –Tiffany Thompson

10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

Our Favorite Design

Neutral boho and glam is not a style combo you see every day—and it’s certainly not one that’s easy to pull off. It’s really hard to hit on styles that are on such opposite ends of the spectrum—with boho being super relaxed and organic and glam being very polished and refined. But this space brings the combo to life in such a beautiful way. And those pampas hats on the dining room wall—talk about a statement! We love.

10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

Mikel Welch

Mikel Welch is a well-known celebrity designer who’s become more of a household name as a TV personality. Some may know him as a former on-air personality of TLC’s Trading Spaces. But today, he’s a host and design expert on Quibi’s Murder House Flip. On the show, he shows viewers how to design sophisticated spaces at affordable prices. Off-camera, he runs his own interior design business, Mikel Welch Designs. In 2020, he was named as one of House Beautiful’s 2020 Next Wave Designers. His designs have been featured on HGTV, The Real Housewives of Atlanta, Good Morning America, and in numerous national magazines.

Why We Love Him

Despite his rising star and growing list of celebrity clients (he’s designed VIP green rooms for Michelle Obama, Oprah Winfrey, and Halle Berry, to name a few), Mikel maintains an air of total approachability. Outside of his client work, he’s passionate about helping everyday people achieve luxury looks in their home—which is actually what his new Skillshare class is all about.

10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

Our Favorite Design

Mikel has designed so many stunning spaces—but our current favorite might be his own home. This space embodies that “Traditional Comfort with a dash of British charm” style we’re really into right now. We love that it’s so comfortable and liveable but with clean lines to keep the look more current.

10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

Image via Dwell

Delia Kenza

Delia Kenza fell into interior design somewhat by accident. A lawyer by trade, when she and her husband bought their first place in upper Manhattan, they renovated it themselves. And then she agreed to do the same for a neighbor. And just like that, she’s been in the design world for a decade, working on both her own real estate investments and client projects. She operates under Delia Kenza Interiors, and specializes in complete renovations of urban dwellings.

Why We Love Her

Delia operates in bold, clean lines and neutral palettes—but uses plenty of natural materials and choice color accents to warm things up. We love the balance that her designs strike, and the way they celebrate both a modern aesthetic but with a subtle nod to the past.

10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

10 Black Interior Designers You Should Follow

Our Favorite Design

These two rooms flow so beautifully together. With a Scandinavian-inspired vibe, the crisp neutrals give this space a clean, minimalist feel. But pops of bold earth tones and that wooden dining table make this space feel so warm and inviting. We love the way the wall moldings and wall decor play off of each other in the living area. There’s a playfulness in the off-centered mirror, which makes your eye bounce around the space and take in all the lovely details.

Want to increase your exposure to even more Black interior designers and their work? Follow the Black Interior Designers Network and the Black Artists + Designers Guild on Instagram.

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A Year in Review: How Modsy Designers Wrapped 2017

Modsy Designers

We asked our Modsy Designers for their best home design advice and what they’re resolving for 2018. Here’s what they loved from 2017 and how they are taking on the new year in style.

Our Favorite Trends of 2017

Mix It Up:

  • “I loved seeing designs include a tasteful mix of bold patterns and colors, rather than trying to be too matchy-matchy.” – Amy

Play With Plants:

  • “My must-have in every room this year was plants. I like that there has been a departure from the fiddle leaf trend and we are starting to see more climbing plants, succulents, and simple eucalypti.” – Joslynn

Get Colorful:

  • “My favorite new home design trend is millennial pink! The subtle hue is a great neutral and works beautifully when paired with true neutrals or even jewel tones.” – Erika
  • “I am really liking darker, jewel toned wall colors. I think this is a great way to add some drama without making a room look darker.” – Gretchen
  • “My favorite home design trend in 2017 was definitely the Jewel Tones! I love using pops of unexpected color in a space, to me it brings life and vibrancy to any room.” – Patrice

Bring In Texture:

  • “Velvet sofas and chairs. I love the texture they bring to a space, and how they can be styled to look casual or sophisticated.” – Belisa

Modsy Designers

Our 2018 Home Design Resolutions (For You To Steal)

Get Personal:

  • “My resolution this year is to personalize my space more. Any space can be made pretty but it needs heart and soul to truly be a great design.” – Amy
  • “I’m resolving to appreciate what I have, be inspired by my surroundings and to only bring things into my home that I truly love and intend to keep for many years to come!” – Tara

Update Your Space:

  • “For me, 2018 will mean updating my pillow covers so I can change them with the seasons. It’s a simple thing, but an easy way to make my living room feel different throughout the year.” – Gretchen
  • “My new years home design resolution is to create a dedicated office space! As of right now I have about 3 different quasi-office spaces in my home, but none of them are truly dedicated to office work. I am a firm believer in starting off the year with a renovation project, so I plan to take the plunge and turn one of the downstairs rooms into my own private office getaway.” – Patrice
  • “Get organized ASAP! For me, 2018 will mean getting rid of visual clutter via cute baskets and storage solutions.” – Allison

Take Your Time:

  • “My resolution is to relax and take the time I need to design my space. As a designer I see things everyday that I like and want to incorporate into my home. However, I know it’s not about what I like, but what I LOVE is most important, and finding things you love to fill your home happens naturally over time. Plus you get a more layered, lived in look this way which is the goal!” – Joslynn

Modsy Designers

Lessons We Learned From You:

Modsy Designers have helped solve a lot of home design struggles this year. Here are the lessons we’ve learned from you, our fabulous Modsy customers.

Follow Your Muse:

  • “Don’t have anything in your home that doesn’t bring you joy.” – Katherine
  • “The best piece of home design advice I learned this year is that it is perfectly fine to follow trends in your home as long as it is something you love. I often find that people are hesitant to put something in their home because they are afraid it will go out of style the next year, but if you love it, it will stand the test of time.” – Erika
  • “It’s important to decorate your home in your style, and not anyone else’s.” – Brittanie

Style To Your Habits:

  • “If you’re a person whose style changes frequently, design your home with a neutral color base and add pops of color through decor. This will make changing your space easier (and less expensive) as your style changes.” – Ryen

Make Room For Life:

  • “Use your space! I think we often are too concerned with keeping our homes perfect that we become afraid to actually use them. Homes are meant to be lived in, not just looked at.” – Amy
  • “Sofas don’t necessarily have to go against walls. Floating a sofa in the middle of the room is an easy trick that makes your layout feel more elegant and intentional.” – Gretchen

Don’t Forget The Details:

  • “Sometimes artwork and rugs are the most vital pieces in a space.” – Micaela
  • “Break out of symmetry! Don’t be afraid to get a little crazy and try something wild like using chairs, trunks, or stools instead of nightstands or side tables.” – May
  • “Have at least one crazy-interesting piece in every room! I learned that there is nothing like striking up a conversation with guests over an amazing, one-of-a-kind artwork or decorative accent. Now I’m always telling people to try and bring something fun into their home.” – Patrice

Modsy Designers

Good Things Take Time:

  • “Design your space right the first time around and don’t compromise on what you love or want. To me, this means it’s ok to take your time with your home design project and make purchases in stages. In the long run you will save money and you’ll have a home that makes you happy!” – Tara
  • “Don’t be afraid to buy what you love and get rid of piece that no longer suit you. Along your road of interior design, as you get older, you will be left with the pieces you love, and somehow they will always fit in your space!” – Ermelinda
  • “Don’t settle for something you don’t love. Fill your home with things that make you happy. You’ll love seeing them everyday.” – Allison

Modsy Designers

 

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