When I started designing 10 years ago, I had a VERY difficult time finding designers of color, much less designers whose work had been featured in major design magazines. Then one day, the very newspaper I worked for featured interior designer Cecile Hayes and I was blown away. Hayes, born and raised in South Florida had been tapped to design a space at the newly opened African American Research Library. She would become the first African American Designer featured in Architectural Digest and the first African American as well as the only designer from the South to be named to Architectural Digest’s Top 100 list of influential designers in the world. I had the pleasure of meeting Hayes at her home years ago and am eternally grateful for her sage design advice and incredible warmth.
Fast forward a few years and finding designers of color is no longer akin to finding a needle in a haystack.
To celebrate and showcase their work, designer Kimberly Ward created an annual list of 20 top African American designers. Hayes, designer Darryl Carter, and 20 other African American designers will be feted this Thursday through Saturday in Atlanta at a series of events and soirees.
Since half of my designer besties live in Atlanta, I'm bummed as heck that I can't be there this weekend to celebrate. I'll follow along and cheer them on via Instagram and Twitter for sure.
Anywho, go ahead and check out their work from the links below. Pretty sure you'll be blown away by their talent as well.
The 2014 African American Top 20 Interior Designers
Linda Allen * Linda Allen Designs* LindaAllenDesigns.com LosAngeles
Nile Johnson * Nile Johnson Design * NileJohnsondesign.com * DC
Alicia Lamar *Alicia Lamar Home *AliciaLamarHome.com * Los Angeles
Anishka Clarke *Ishka Designs* Ishkadesigns.com * New York
Lorna Gross- Bryant *Savant Interior Design * SavantID.com *Bethesda, MD
Tiffany Brooks *You and Your Decor * YouandYourDecor.net *Chicago
Erin Shakoor * Shakoor Interiors * Shakoorinc.com * Chicago
Michel Boyd * Smith Boyd Interiors * SmithBoydInteriors.com * Atlanta
2014 HALL OF FAME DESIGNERS
Darryl Carter * Darryl Carter * DarrylCarter.com * Washington DC
Cecil Hayes * Cecil Hayes * CecilHayes.com * Miami