How did you move into interior design?
When I was in Paris I lived in the apartment of Lisa Fine, a well-known interior designer. I walked into the apartment and the fabric walls matched the fabric headboard, which matched the lampshades and the carpets. I felt like I had just walked into a jewel box. I frequented the Marche aux Puces [flea market] and lived in Saint-Germain on Rue de Lille, where all the famous antique dealers had shops. I would go into the shops taking pictures of everything I loved, teaching myself about the history of design.
Tell us about your early projects…
I never worked with an interior designer at a firm. I remember walking around NYC acquainting myself with the fabric and furniture showrooms. Now I have it down to a science: I know the best and hottest brands, I have my top showrooms, but in the beginning I had to teach myself. Style and taste is something you are born with, and I am constantly feeding my mind and eyes with beautiful things and inspiration to feed my creative soul.
How would you describe your style?
On a personal level my style is Marie Antoinette at Studio 54.
How do you approach a design today?
As if it were a painting. I start with the background, such as the walls, floors, and ceilings, and then I build up on the space as though I am building up paint pigment, color, and texture. I do not necessarily believe in a symmetrical floorplan or a basic box; I decorate with passion. I believe in surrounding a space with the things you love, that reflect who you are and tell a wonderfully romantic story.
Romantic pink is a color Sasha Bikoff has been drawn to since she was a teenager redesigning her own bedroom, and is taken to extremes in this SoHo holiday house in New York.
What are your influences?
Nature is my biggest influence: the sea, the sky, the sunset, flowers. I am also inspired by my travels visiting villas, châteaux, museums, and other great places this world has to offer, plus French 19th-century paintings. And lastly, fashion.
Her designs include the Versace x Sasha Bikoff collection, launched at 2019’s Milan Design Week. Image: Versace
Describe the motifs you come back to…
A lot of styles from the 1980s Memphis Group. It’s such happy design and such a conversation starter.
Your staircase for the Kips Bay Decorator Show House got lots of attention. Tell us about the idea behind it.
It was such a challenge because the stair landings were so narrow. I knew I wanted to create an art installation and a technicolor dream. I found myself dancing up and down the stairs and then all these Memphis motifs came into my head. The whole design was done on that day. I wanted to put the “show” back in show house and ignite a sense of creativity. I had to shake things up over there—I am a young designer with fresh, new ideas. I didn’t want to go basic or traditional, which is what is usually done.
Sasha Bikoff’s Stairway to Heaven installation at the Kips Bay Decorator Show House 2018. Image: Genevieve Garruppo
What are you currently working on?
A new restaurant, a home in Lake Como, a home in the Hamptons, and much more!
How do you see your design evolving?
I would love to do more designing of furniture, lighting, tabletop, tiles… you name it! I would also like to design a hotel and work with a Hollywood star.