Chad McPhail's organic design aesthetic

A SoCal native and Parsons School of Design graduate, McPhail moved to New York 14 years ago to pursue his lifelong dream of becoming an interior designer. With recent projects in Brooklyn and downtown, McPhail mixes West Coast and East Coast vibes...


  WHO: Chad McPhail, a SoCal native and Parsons School of Design graduate who moved to New York 14 years ago to pursue his lifelong dream of becoming an interior designer.

  WHAT: An organic design aesthetic that champions a heady combination of worldly patterns against neutral backgrounds—and an occasional plant or two as a finishing touch. “Natural, living things in a room are really important to me, and I find myself using them a lot,” McPhail says. Mixing in old and new pieces along with clients’ existing furniture is also a favorite way to breathe new life into stale environments.

  WHERE: Recent projects include a Brooklyn Heights duplex with a West Coast meets East Coast vibe, a loft apartment in Dumbo, and a 20,000-square-foot office space in downtown Manhattan. McPhail, who lives in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, has also signed on to decorate a three-bedroom apartment on the Upper East Side.

  WHEN: Two years ago, after project management stints at MR Architects + Décor and Laura Kirar Design, McPhail took what he calls a “scary” leap, opening his own firm, Chad McPhail Design. “I found it immensely satisfying to do my own thing,” he says. “The creative part comes naturally to me, and I’m so happy that I’ve worked for great people who taught me the business side of the job.”

  WHY: When it comes to leaving his mark on a room, McPhail insists on having a collaborative design process with his clients. “I like learning from them,” he says. “You get to be in a close relationship for a period of time, and you really get a sense of how they live. I think that’s the fun part.”