Inside Mackenzie's Bohemian Midcentury Phoenix Home by Jessie Wickersham

Welcome to my house!

Mackenzie here! Shannon and I recently opened our doors to Phoenix New Times for a personal tour of our newly remodeled home in Arcadia (read the feature here!). Not long after, I had some of the interior design progress photographed by the always amazing James Stewart, and now that the pictures are in, I thought I'd dive a little deeper into some of my decor choices. Your shoes can stay on, if you like...

Bohemian Hangs

Shannon and I aren’t really “formal living room” people, so we saw this area as a place to play or listen to music, kick back with an issue of Arizona Highways and a craft beer. This is also the best spot in the house to catch a sunset. The vintage console-style record player is perfect for Sunday morning NPR and coffee. Shannon is a great guitar player and sweetly only has a few design requests, one being that her guitars are handy. Guitar wall hangers are a cool way to display prized instruments while keeping the floor clutter-free. 

You'll see fun, personal touches in every room, like the wooden box labeled St. Louis Anheuser-Busch (I was born in St. Louis) and the baskets—both family pieces that I grew up with. Oh, and I bought the framed piece for Shannon as a surprise on closing day because we saw a UFO one time at the beach. Just kidding… or am I?

The Dining Room

We literally never eat here. Ever. We do walk by it 1000 times a day though and really appreciate the storage bonus of having extra cabinetry just off the kitchen. And it’s great as a spillover spot for miniature relatives who can’t cut it at the adult table. When I was working my butt off in design school, I swore I’d buy an Eero Saarinen Tulip Table with my first paycheck (I grossly overestimated how much interior designers make after graduation). I wasn’t able to afford it, but years later when I saw an original one on Craigslist for a steal, I was out in Fountain Hills buying it within the hour. I never imagined a day that I wouldn’t mind our sweet nieces coloring on it, but that day has come and gone and we all survived just fine.

On the left we have the original watercolor sketches of Shannon and my tattoos done by Austin West with a framed photograph of a canyon we found on Society6 that reminded us of our first backpacking trip together in the West Fork. The light is a vintage barn light that I picked up at Zinnias at Melrose. It was one of the very first pieces I nailed down when we were planning our remodel; everything had to revolve around it and a picture of a Golden Retriever named Aspen in a canoe on Lake Louise. I don’t know Aspen the Mountain Pup personally, I just saw him on Instagram, and he happened to be the same color as our cabinetry.

Brunch Banquette

This wall has the best view in our entire house—that’s why we wanted it to be cozy and multi-functional. I have my coffee here each morning and watch the hummingbirds play while the sun rises on Camelback Mountain. I like to take advantage of the few hours in the day where our neighbor’s children aren’t screaming. We invested in the custom banquette bench and the extra thick custom Sunbrella cushion. We saved money in other areas: the dining table was donated from a client who was getting rid of it, and the chairs were on clearance at World Market, which was awesome because I had pinned them for the house months earlier! I lucked out and found that large acrylic of Saguaro National Park at HomeGoods.  

Vintage Vibes

I was lucky enough to snag this midcentury Takeshi Nii Ny Chair on Craigslist for a photo shoot and absolutely had to bring it home. Find of the century! [Fun fact: Inspired by the classic director's chair, Nii’s innovative, foldable creation was designed in 1958 and is now part of the permanent collection at MoMa.] The little bird pillow was another Zinnias at Melrose find. To add a little texture, I rounded out the seating area with the faux fur ottoman.

I’m obsessed with round mirrors—you’ll find them in pretty much all my designs. Whenever there is a great view, I like to put a mirror on the opposite wall to repeat it. Notice the royal palm reflected in it—I’m really jazzed that I have been able to keep this plant alive for more than three months. On the right, the shelves are filled with items that are meaningful to us in some way: my grandparents' wedding photo, embroidered art I found at a women’s art co-op in Mexico, family books—all mementos of things we value in life. Nothing wrong with holding on to things that bring you joy. 

Built-In Reading Nook

We needed a solution to hide our TV components (they live behind the baskets), create storage, and add some seating to the space, so we had this bench and cushion custom made to match the dining banquette on the other side of the room. Textile wall hangings add a softness to the space and dampen sound, so I went that route over hanging framed art to keep it cozy. I picked up this mid-century style marble table at Target because I needed a place to set my coffee. [Do you see a theme here? All of my design decisions are based on creating places to drink coffee comfortably.]

Master Bedroom

Truth: we like camping more than living our “real lives,” so we decided to take a stab at achieving a campsite feel in the bedroom. Full moon, bonfire, sticks, camp blankets, triangular mirrors that subtly suggest mountain peaks… you get the idea. We’ve even got a fur rug in front of the fireplace because our Golden Retriever thinks he’s Barry White. The sticks are from bigger hikes we’ve done in Olympic National Park and Glacier National Park. We need a rug, but have yet to find the perfect one that is cozy, casual, and low-maintenance. 

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This has truly felt like an episode of MTV Cribs. Thanks for stopping by! 

Keep an eye out for our next post where we'll be announcing a sweet Mother's Day giveaway!

Spring 2017 Decor Roundup: Color, Pattern, & Organization by Jessie Wickersham

Spring has finally sprung, and it couldn't have come soon enough. We are more than ready for a happy refresh, and when it comes to interior decorating trends, that's what this season is all about. Here are a few things we're seeing a lot of in interior design...

Blush Pink

This Spring, we're seeing the world through rose-colored glasses. There's a new neutral in town: blush pink. The dusty hue is popping up everywhere, and that's alright by us!

Image: Urban Outfitters

Image: Urban Outfitters

Image: West Elm

Image: West Elm

How we're using it: we love it paired with mid-to-dark greens. Or keep it simple and pretty with white and linen.

Image: Anthropologie
Image: Anthropologie

Bold Florals

Another interior decor trend that's blossoming is the use of florals. Large-scale, bold prints are key. If they look vintage, even better. Don't be afraid to shake up your pattern game by pairing flowery prints with fine structured patterns like stripes or pin dots. 

We're also seeing a lot of bold wallpaper choices happening in 2017, and if you're daring enough to go or it, florals are a really fun, playful way to add flare to your space. We suggest starting with a room you don't spend a whole lot of time in, like a powder or laundry room, to avoid getting sick of it too quickly.

Leave your options open when it comes to color, because later this spring, you’ll see the pastels fade into the background a bit as sunny yellow, tangerine, and aqua sneak into the mix. Combining the pastels with the brights is a big signature style of this spring and summer.

Image: Lori Fenn

Image: Lori Fenn

Image: Lori Fenn

Image: Lori Fenn

Image: LUA Skincare
Image: Lori Finn

Image: Lori Finn

One person we know who does this extremely well is our good friend Lori Fenn—her art prints and paintings are WAY cute and bring brightness and color to a room in such a fun way. Phoenix friends can see some of her work in person next month at the McKinley Club, or on the packaging of her amazing plant-powered skincare line, LUA—the bottles are super cute and totally reusable!

Spring Cleaning

By now, most of us probably know plenty of interior design "hacks" to help get your home organized. The truth is, these tips and tricks don't really get to the root of the problem. Instead, the seem to be a symptom of a bigger issue: our culture of obsessive consumption. With that in mind, we have a few bits of advice on the matter...

Pro tip #1: reframe how you think about the things in your space. Ideally, everything should serve a purpose, and you want to cut back on having multiple items that offer the same function. When you think ahead and design your space to meet your basic needs, you find more value in your belongings and less of a need to keep up the ritual of consuming and tossing. This means less time organizing and cleaning, less time searching for the things you actually need, and less time stressing about the clutter.  

Consider, for instance, how many pieces or sets of dinnerware are on the shelves or in storage. A family's kitchen cabinet really only needs 8 plates, 8 cups, 8 bowls max; a couple could get by with four of each. How many cooking utensils, pots & pans, and small appliances are you really using regularly that you couldn't do without? How many shoes in your closet haven't seen pavement in six months? How many half-used hair products and random toiletries do you need to keep up your routine? Ask yourself (more than once!), "Is this essential?" Try taking a backpacking approach to your home, and you'll start to see your lifestyle simplify.

Pro tip #2: take 15 or so minutes a day and just put everything back where it goes. If each item has a designated home, this will be a lot easier. If something doesn't fit or look good, figure out how you can make do without it. This will keep the mess (and stress) from compiling.

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So, those are our top Spring tips and trends! Comment below and let us know what else you're digging right now.

Mackenzie Collier Interiors Featured on Wayfair — "Wall Décor Makeovers from the Experts" by Jessie Wickersham

Looking for design inspiration and tips on wall décor? Wayfair recently asked us to share one of our room makeovers featuring a wall decor transformation—check out our advice in their latest post on Wall Décor Makeovers from the Experts.

Wall Décor Ideas

Houzz: Interior Design Tips for Renting Out Your Home by Jessie Wickersham

Considering hosting your space on Airbnb or renting your place to vacationers? Our latest Houzz feature offers advice on how to step up your rental game and get the most out of your listing.