Owner & Principal Designer

Key Role:
Manages team efforts and client communications for the execution and completion of a project

  • University of Pittsburgh Entrepreneurial Fellowship, 2021

  • Bachelors of Science in Interior Design Art Institute of Pittsburgh, 2017

I’m very purpose driven and try to remain focused on things that align with my spirit

I’m a true introvert but people are always drawn to me

I love a rainy day in the house



To know my story is to know Melissa, the Person and Melissa, the Designer.

The road to my education and professional career in Interior Design definitely had some twists and turns, but I strive to live by ”Everything happens for a reason.” Sure, in times of dashed dreams or foiled plans, it is not always easy to hold strong to these beliefs, but I can always look back and find a lesson learned. I don’t want to just list my steps to becoming an Interior Designer. I want to share my journey and lessons along the way that have made me a stronger designer in the hopes that you may get to know me also as a person.

Let’s start at the beginning. As a little girl, I was excited with the gift of a Barbie Dream House, but I knew I had to make it my own. The style and personality of my “Barbie of the day” dictated the vision. With perfectly placed furniture, fabric swatches adding textures and patterns and wooden blocks painted by yours truly to build additions, the house became a home. It went beyond “playtime” for me; I felt excitement and satisfaction when it was time for her to move in and everything was perfectly placed.
In the design process, it is important my clients are comfortable being themselves in order to communicate their true style and vision. Without this the end result is never authentic.

Fast forward to preteen and time to decorate my bedroom. Lucky for me, Mom let me make the choices. I did not hesitate to take the reins. Maybe she expected me to follow the norm for most girls my age, but I had different ideas. She fought me on some things, she fussed here and there, not fully trusting what I was seeing in my mind. Guess what? In the end, she loved it!
In the design process, often clients want to “be safe” to follow the trends. I will never force my client out of their comfort zone, but if I envision something that will enhance their space, I will share my ideas and provide solid explanations to encourage them to rethink things. I believe a designer should challenge their clients to do things they may never have thought of.

The fire to be creative still burned in my heart. I wanted the chance to design in the real world before incurring student loan debt. I needed a portfolio and some reassurance. I put an ad on Craigslist offering amateur design services free of charge in exchange for pictures to build my portfolio. It worked! I was hired to help with a small project. With no experience measuring, space planning or with other details of the design process, I had to be honest about my limitations and face any fears and go for it. I completed my first project and was not only paid but referred to other clients.

In the design process, a unique situation or request can often come up in a project. At times it might be something new even for the designer. Even if it involves something I am totally inexperienced with, I will not let fear stop me from trying but I will always be honest with my clients about my limitations.

With an opportunity to move to Los Angeles and start my degree in Interior Design came next in my journey. When the education fell through for financial reasons, rather than let it stop me in my tracks, I picked up a serving job and offered free assistance at a few small design firms on La Brea Avenue. I was hired as an unpaid intern, and gained valuable knowledge. Eventually I moved back home to pursue my Bachelor of Science in Interior Design at the Art Institute of Pittsburgh #RIP. While in school, I worked as a Lead Stylist at West Elm and managed to build great client relationships and run small scale projects. My internship during senior year at a hospitality firm designing hotels in Pittsburgh and Ohio led to being hired after graduation as a Junior Designer. A business owner next to our firm was in the process of building a house and looking for a designer. I offered my services and ended up doing my first interior design of a new build. While doing this project and still working at the hospitality firm, one of the owners of the hotels was also building a house in Ohio and had lost their designer. She asked if I would be interested in taking over the project. With both of the huge projects ongoing and other small ones developing, I decided to venture out on my own.

In the design process, there is always a plan to reach the vision, but things happen. A renovation might hit a snag, a client might have a new request, or a chosen finish might be out of stock. As a professional designer, it is my responsibility to keep the project moving even when there is a change in direction.

I have grown and excelled in the details, techniques, and knowledge of the design process through my journey. Most importantly, though, I care about making more than a beautiful space for clients. I want to educate them. I want to know and understand what makes them light up; then I know insight and intuition will lead me to make their vision a reality.

Life will always take you where you are supposed to go; you must learn to trust yourself.



Lead Designer & Project Coordinator

Key Role:
Develop and implement detailed designs and presentation development 

  • Bachelors of Science in Interior Design, Art Institute of Pittsburgh, 2017

I’m a cool mom

I’m adventurous, i.e. I’ll bungee jump, Jump out of a plane, etc. A true daredevil

I own and operate a candle company; All candles are hand poured and all scents are created by me


I come from humble beginnings, where order and attention to detail was not always possible. I chose a different route from my outside circumstances and created my own personal world that existed inside my bedroom that was always different, more orderly, and well thought-out than my five other siblings. Although my mother supplied me with all the fixings of a bedroom it always matched my three other sisters. I of course had to add my own touch by collecting and repurposing items throughout my home in order to maintain my own identity. It was when I stole our shared bathrooms shower curtain to create curtain panels for my room that my mother knew I loved to play with space and style. She allowed me to get my hands on the rest of our home and rearrange furniture as I saw fit, I adored it.
It grew from there to playing the SIMS on PlayStation and creating a virtual world of homes I built and styled from scratch. I would play for hours on end. Always in awe at what finishes, and fixtures could do to a space.

My design dreams stayed with me throughout high school. I attended Canton McKinley , and for our senior project we had to create presentations boards showcasing what our career choice was. I was able to utilize one of the spaces I created on the SIMS to develop a 3D model layered with Barbie furniture . I drowned myself in research on what I thought my potential career could be and I was sold.

In 2016 I graduated from The Art Institute of Pittsburgh to receive my Bachelors of Science in Interior Design.

Upon graduation I focused in on furniture sales/interior decorating working for a few years at Lazyboy. I never lost my yearning for a true career in interior design where I would develop projects from the ground up, much like my memories of playing the SIMS. Having your hand over every interior detail as a designer, although challenging, is truly creating a life for someone.

Overall, in tying back to my beginnings, my background is much different than your average designer which allows me to have a different perspective on my approach to design. It allows me to navigate personalities and budgets in a way some others may miss. As a mom I also can pay attention to what a growing family may need in their home so that it works for them. I subscribe to the pursuit of


Melissa captured everything we wanted and everything we didn’t know we needed in our project!! And she came in under budget! Highly recommend!

- Brittini W.

I have worked with M Hill Rees Interiors on multiple residential projects and they consistently provide incredible creativity and functional design. Their attention to detail and timely completion to my full satisfaction has been spot on. I highly recommend them for any project large or small if you are looking for excellent results.


Melissa captured everything we wanted and everything we didn’t know we needed in our project!! And she came in under budget! Highly recommend!

- Brittini W.