Born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Thad Hayes graduated from the Louisiana State University School of Environmental Design. He practiced as a landscape architect in New York City and studied interior design at Parsons School of Design. Hayes went to work at Bray-Schaible Design in 1982, and in 1985 he established his own office, Thad Hayes, Inc., now in its twenty-eighth year.
Hayes has been profiled in numerous publications, including Elle Decor, House and Garden, and Architectural Digest. In addition to being recognized as one of “America’s Most Brilliant Decorators” and “The Best of the Best” by House Beautiful, Hayes was named one of thirty “Deans of Design” by Architectural Digest and has been honored as one of “The AD 100” since 1992. Of his work, Architectural Digest has said, "Altogether, the designer has wielded restraint so astutely that the rooms exude a sense of being complete without being full."