Often referred to as the “Mother of American Country Decor”, Sister Parish is credited as being one of the most influential interior decorators in American History.
Born into a wealthy family, Sister Parish’s youth was spent between homes in New Jersey, Manhattan, Paris and Maine where her travels and surroundings shaped her eye and style. Born as “Dorothy”, her brother dubbed her as “Sister” when she was a child and the nickname stuck.
She married Henry Parish in 1930 and she delighted in decorating their home in the styles she had seen overseas. After the stock market crash of 1929, many of the country’s most wealthy were left in financial restraints and looked to her for assistance in decorating their home. Knowing her audience, she advertised herself as someone who could come in and rearrange and reuse the items you already had to give your room a fresh and new look. She opened her own business, officially, in 1933.
She went on to hire the architect, Albert Hadley to assist in the building side of the business and later made him partner - starting the famed Parish-Hadley Design Firm.
One of Sister Parish’s most famous projects is helping Jackie Kennedy decorate the White House during the 1960’s renovation.
There were certain elements to a Sister Parish design and they were defined by:
Other common items you will find in a Sister Parish room include:
Painted floors, painted furniture, animal portraits, mattress ticking, botanical prints and quilts