An Exhibition of Design & Tradition

Josh Wilkes Showcases Family & Festivity on the Holiday Home Tour

Story by Remy Sisk

Photos by Kathryn Harrington

When the 41st Annual Old Louisville Holiday Home Tour launches the first weekend of December, attendees will be treated to an extra special showcase when they stroll down Garvin Place. During the tour, Josh Wilkes will be showing off his home that also functions as his design firm’s office space as well as a rental site for special events. It’s a new home he’s recently acquired, and he and his business partner in Ross-Hite Design, Edie Fullerton, look forward to welcoming guests into the home during one of Old Louisville’s most beloved traditions.

The Holiday Home Tour, taking place December 2-3, will feature homes on South Sixth Street, Floral Terrace, Garvin Place and St. James Court. Attendees will be able to explore each of the homes and take in stunning holiday decorations while also bearing witness to some of the most exquisite Victorian architecture in the world. Wilkes’ home will indeed be on the tour, and his holiday décor will not only be a wonderful addition to the event but also something of an advertisement for the different facets of his business.

Ross-Hite Design, in addition to interior design, will be performing Christmas installs for clients this holiday season. “Decorating for the holidays shouldn’t be stressful,” Wilkes emphasizes. “Allowing me to do the heavy lifting – trimming the tree or styling a staircase – or fighting the crowds to shop for a few new pieces to augment family heirlooms helps people enjoy the beauty of the season without the stress… I love the look of wonder from clients when they see their homes lit up. It brings me joy to bring others joy, which is what the holiday season is all about!”

But of course the holiday services are secondary to the true design work; Wilkes classifies his personal style as being rooted in familial traditions and sentimentality. “Growing up in the country, I’ve always appreciated beauty in the everyday,” he says. “Even utilitarian pieces – such as a collection of my grandmothers old cast iron skillets – are beautiful, their patina telling a story of countless meals shared with loved ones.”

Wilkes carries that principle with him as he works with clients, helping them explore the meaningfulness that can come with pieces passed down within a family. “As an owner at Ross-Hite Design, I’m working to make design accessible to everyone, no matter the budget,” he affirms. “I believe in surrounding yourself with objects that carry meaning, often re-purposing family heirlooms to bring soul to a space while working with a modern lifestyle.”

And that’s something he brings to the home on Garvin Place. Though of course Victorian in its foundation, the space has been appointed by Wilkes with an eclectic array of décor that ties together traditional tastefulness with a modern mentality. “A well designed room can be transformative,” he enthuses. “When your space is inspiring, suddenly you’ll find that you’re taking better care of yourself. Good design really is a critical component of a happy life.”

If attendees of the Holiday Home Tour share in this philosophy when they visit Wilkes’ home, they can in fact use the space as their holiday event venue. “My home will continue to redefine Southern hospitality, creating personal one-to-one experiences,” he describes. “Whether you need executive overnight accommodation or a private chef, we can help host your event and put you in the center of the exciting renaissance that’s underway in the amazing Old Louisville neighborhood.”

Creating this home and event venue has been “a true labor of love,” Wilkes says, and he eagerly anticipates sharing his passion project with guests on the Holiday Home Tour. “It’s been thrilling to breathe new life into an old space,” he maintains. “Filling once forgotten rooms with beautiful objects and opening it up for the locals and tourists alike to house their own special moments – showers, corporate dinners, charity events, wedding festivities, retreats, etc.”

And the Holiday Home Tour will be one of the first steps in that process – exhibiting not just the striking design but the inherent warmth of the season and how this home on Garvin can help make your season even more special, either by having your own event there or by taking inspiration from Wilkes’ commitment to family-oriented décor. “The holidays have always held special meaning to me,” he says. “It’s a time of year where people are more apt to appreciate the sentimental pieces that have been passed down generation to generation.” VT

The 41st Annual Old Louisville Holiday Home Tour

December 2-3,
VIP Reception: December 1

oldlouisville.org/holiday-home-tour

Josh Wilkes may be reached at
josh@rosshite.design