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Interior Designer Mackenzie Collier Shares the Eco Inspo Behind Her Instagram-Worthy Rooms

Greenwood Brewery interior design by MacKenzie Collier

Roehner + Ryan / Greenwood Brewery

The founder of the female-driven design firm Mackenzie Collier Interiors creates sustainable spaces for all—from influencers to breweries.

Interior designer Mackenzie Collier is a self-starter in every sense of the word. When she couldn’t find a job that was the perfect fit, she created one for herself instead.

“It was kind of accidental,” she says, describing the 2011 launch of her eponymous firm, Mackenzie Collier Interiors. After graduating from Chicago’s Harrington College of Design one year earlier, Collier headed west to pursue a career as an interior designer.

As for trends, which come and go, Collier prefers to steer clear of the hottest styles. Instead, she focuses on the functionality and longevity of a space.

interior-design-by-MacKenzie-Collier-Phoenix

Gillian Walsworth for Dwell Magazine / Highwood Haus

“I moved to Arizona hoping to get on my feet after school, but I found myself interviewing for jobs that I just wasn’t that interested in,” Collier recalls.

“I put an ad on Craigslist [offering her design services], and the first people who reached out to me ended up becoming some of my biggest clients to date. They had this Tuscan-style home in Queen Creek that we completely gutted down to the studs and turned into a really cool modern house. After that, all their friends hired me, and my business grew from there.”

While it was never Collier’s intention to start her own interior design firm, the universe, she says, started one for her. “It just kind of grew into one naturally,” she explains. Recently, she added to her responsibilities with the launch of a business coaching program tailored for her fellow designers

Since that fateful first client, Mackenzie Collier has grown her team into a design powerhouse, with offices in Phoenix, Portland and—coming soon—Austin. Best known for its sustainable and modern-yet-playful aesthetic, the full-service firm that handles both residential and commercial clients markets itself as “not your mother-in-law’s interior designer.”

“We focus a lot on transparency and pushing the industry forward aesthetically,” says Collier, when speaking about her design approach. “When a client comes to me with photos of rooms they like, I say, ‘I don’t want to see rooms. I want to see where you’ve traveled; what music you listen to; what makes you excited. What do you like to do on the weekends?’ I love tailoring a design specifically for that client, so it’s not based on any space that’s already been created.”

Mckenzie Collier interior design The McKinley Club

Andrew and Ada Photography / The McKinley Club

As for trends, which come and go, Collier prefers to steer clear of the hottest styles. Instead, she focuses on the functionality and longevity of a space. “Sustainability really is all encompassing,” she says of her Mackenzie Collier interior design firm. “It affects everything we do and everything that we source. Basically, we’re looking at the life cycle of products. What are they made from? How are they made? Who makes them?

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mid century interior design by MacKenzie Collier

Andrew and Ada Photography / The McKinley Club

“We want items that are made in socially conscious as well as environmentally conscious ways. In interior design, you come across a lot of child labor, specifically as it relates to rug weaving and outdoor furniture. So, being mindful of supply chains and where products come from changes everything,” she says.

Some sustainable favorites of Collier’s are Ruggable’s washable rugs, FLOR rugs and carpet tiles, and one-of-a-kind antiques.

I don’t like when spaces take themselves too seriously.

Highwood-Haus-interior-design-by-MacKenzie-Collier

Gillian Walsworth for Dwell Magazine / Highwood Haus

While Mackenzie Collier never strays from the client’s vision, she has a strong sense of personal style.

“My aesthetic is always going to be light, airy and cheerful with a lot of illumination,” she explains. “The things I love the most are white walls and natural light. I don’t like when spaces take themselves too seriously. So, in any of the designs I do, you’ll see something a little off-beat or funny or just something that will make you laugh. I love spaces that bring joy.”

Here, we take a look at three of Collier’s favorite spaces that she and her team designed.

Greenwood Brewery mid century interior design

Roehner + Ryan / Greenwood Brewery

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GREEENWOOD BREWING | Phoenix
Located in the heart of downtown Phoenix, the first all-woman-owned brewery in the state of Arizona, “is probably my favorite interior design project that I’ve ever done,” Collier says.

The design was inspired by a playlist that airs in the brewery. “The music is super sunny and bright—a great mix of classic rock and really fun pop songs,” the designer adds. “We wanted the interiors to be light and airy, and feature accents of that signature ‘Greenwood’ green, since the owner’s last name is Greenwood.”

MacKenzie Collier garden design at Greenwood Brewery

Roehner + Ryan / Greenwood Brewery

The hub of the building is the outdoor courtyard, where the owner hopes to hold community events and classes. “The goal was to design a space with women in mind but where men could also feel comfortable. Even the bottles [the owner] makes are designed to fit in a woman’s hands. It’s just super cool in every detail.”

WHAT WE LOVE: Crisp white paneling, luxurious Carrara marble, warm woods and green accents. Featured in the taproom are custom arched brass pendants made by local fabricator Ruben Gonzalez of 11th Monk3y.

Mackenzie Collier mid century interior design

Andrew and Ada Photography / The McKinley Club

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THE MCKINLEY CLUB |Phoenix
Interiors designed with creativity in mind, this coworking space also happens to be the home of Mackenzie Collier Interiors’ Phoenix headquarters. Part industrial, part bohemian, The McKinley Club features lots of natural light thanks to large windows throughout, private offices separated by glass and metal, tons of plants and distinctive midcentury modern furniture—backdropped by geometric murals from local artists Janel Garza and Danielle Hacche.

WHAT WE LOVE: Industrial elements, soft lines, natural light, midcentury modern furniture and decor, bohemian influences, and plenty of plants.

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Highwood Haud modern living room interior design

Gillian Walsworth for Dwell Magazine / Highwood Haus

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HIGHWOOD HAUS | Castro Valley
Located in Castro Valley, California, this midcentury modern double A-frame, designed by Joseph Eichler, is packed with style that reflects the high-energy personality and lifestyle of its owner, wellness life coach, blogger and influencer Joanne Encarnacion (aka @gofitjo).

mid century modern interior design by MacKenzie Collier

Gillian Walsworth for Dwell Magazine / Highwood Haus

“It was basically bare bones before we came in,” Mackenzie Collier says. “We based our interior design off Jo’s brand and aesthetic. She has a really strong point of view, so it was really fun to create for her.”

While every room is brimming with personality, Encarnacion’s distinctive home office is must-see. The focal point of the room is an accent wall clad in wallpaper that showcases the iconic artwork of Keith Haring. Complemented by clean lines, a bright white palette and jungle-worthy plants, this work-from-home approved space is equal parts artistic, grounded and wellness focused.

WHAT WE LOVE: Graphic patterns, clean lines, black-and-white backdrops, jewel tones, natural textures and large, leafy plants.

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