TEAM

DESIGN DIRECTOR

INTERIOR DESIGNER II

INTERIOR DESIGNER II - TEAM LEAD

INTERIOR DESIGNER II - TEAM LEAD

Interior design & Creative Development

Interior designer i

Interior designer i

Interior designer i

Marketing & brand identity

Procurement & Logistics

Administrative Relations

Operations management

Melanie Hamel


Melanie grew up in Danville, Virginia where she received a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Averett University. Continuing her education, she moved to Houston to pursue her PhD in Cognitive Psychology at Rice University, with a primary focus on how the human brain processes visual information. Following graduation, her husband’s profession as a U.S. Army Infantry Officer meant Melanie would be moving to exciting new cities across the nation and overseas. These experiences fueled her interest in the many ways our environment can powerfully affect our sense of joy and happiness, and she decided to return to her studies; this time, with a focus on interiors. She earned a Master of Science in Interior and Environmental Design from Illinois State University and continued to grow in knowledge and experience through an internship at Fredman Design Group, a renowned residential design firm in Chicago. Eventually, Melanie found herself back in Houston, where she continued to hone her trade and earned her LEED Green Associate credential before joining the MFI team in 2016. With a steadfast focus on enhanced comfort and function, Melanie’s designs deliver extraordinary style and purpose while expertly sharing each client’s unique story.

DESIGN DIRECTOR

Ashlee Garner


Ashlee was born and raised in Houston, Texas where she quickly fell in love with the power of interior design after watching Martin Short, playing impassioned designer Franck Eggelhoffer, unveil a stunning nursery for the Banks family in Father of the Bride 2. As Ashlee grew, so did her love for all things architecture and design, leading her to study interior design at San Jacinto Central College. Following graduation, she continued to expand her industry knowledge by serving as a designer and sales associate for premier furniture vendors and local retail boutiques. With a meticulous eye and authentic vision, Ashlee employs a graceful touch, adeptly creating spaces that celebrate a sophisticated sense of simplicity. Away from the office, Ashlee dedicates her time to volunteering for animal rescue groups throughout the greater Houston area and to traveling, where she embraces all of the beauty and inspiration our world has to offer.


INTERIOR DESIGNER II

Kristin Amundsen

Kristin’s passion for design developed at a young age when she began collecting interior inspiration images and pinning them up around her room. Her interest eventually blossomed into a calling and Kristin pursued studies at The University of Texas where she received a Bachelor of Science in Interior Design. Upon graduation, she accepted a position at Rottet Studio, a firm specializing in corporate and hospitality design. Kristin spent six years with Rottet assisting in the coordination and scheduling of interior projects for notable clients across varying industries nationwide. Feeling drawn to residential interiors, she joined the MFI team in 2019 bringing a fresh, sophisticated design approach. Kristin is a Texas Registered Interior Designer who creates timeless interiors with a powerful focus on the delicate balance between form and function.

Interior Designer II – Team Lead

Sydney Manning

A native Houstonian, Sydney attributes her eye for design to growing up surrounded by beautiful, well-appointed spaces. She moved east for college, attending the University of Mississippi where she initially studied psychology. While there, she felt drawn to the world of design and the power it has to enhance the human experience. That pull eventually shifted the focus of Sydney’s studies to interior design and, upon resettling in her beloved hometown, she spent seven years with a luxury residential design studio sharpening her technical knowledge and building a respected name in the local design community. Sydney joined the MFI team in 2017, bringing a passion for customer service and the boutique client experience with her. Drawn to rich, saturated colors and organic patterns, Sydney designs homes that celebrate and enhance functional luxury for the families who live within.

Interior Designer II – Team Lead

Kelsey Grant

Kelsey Grant graduated with honors from the Design, Housing, and Merchandising program at Oklahoma State University in 2011. Shortly thereafter, she and her husband moved abroad to the United Kingdom where she continued to hone her aesthetic preferences and professional skills through travel and freelance design communities. Upon settling in Houston, Kelsey served as an Assistant Designer for a local fine furnishings boutique. During this time she cultivated significant industry relationships and a keen understanding of organizational procedures. Kelsey brings a uniquely global perspective to the MFI design team, which facilitates her interaction with diverse vendors and clientele. Her precise standard of detail management makes her an asset to the completion of each project.

INTERIOR DESIGN & CREATIVE DEVELOPMENT

Danica Bezewada

Originally from Dallas, Texas, Danica’s extensive travels have offered her the opportunity to call many places home. After graduating from The University of Oklahoma with a Bachelor of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders, her passion for design eventually led her to pursue an education at the University of California, Los Angeles, where she earned her Certificate in Digital Design. Danica’s instinct for design allowed her to work for some of the most prestigious firms across the United States, including Brynn Olson Design Group in Chicago and San Francisco based startup, MINE. One of her most informative experiences was a year spent in India, where she took a deep dive into the study of textiles and colors, which greatly informs her design aesthetic today. She has a heart for service and engaging with the community around her. When she’s not volunteering or working, you can find her with her husband and young son, mapping out their next adventure, whether it be trying out the latest local restaurant, or planning their next trip.

Interior Designer I

Maddie Farmen

Maddie Farmen has shown a love and appreciation for design from an early age. This excitement for design led her to pursue an education in Architecture where she earned a Bachelor of Environmental Design and a Master of Architecture from Texas A&M University. Following graduation, her husband’s profession took her to Midland, Texas, where she began a career in architectural design. After several architecture internships and a career start in architectural design, her long-time love for interiors led her to pursue a career in high-end residential interior design. In 2020, she moved back to Houston where she joined the MFI team. Maddie has a love for current, yet classic, design that combines styles to create beautiful spaces that will stand the test of time. Outside of work, Maddie loves to travel, cook, and spend time with her husband, family, and friends, and is always watching the latest design show for inspiration for future projects.

Interior Designer I

Helene Chastain

Helene was born and raised in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, where her creative passions began at a young age. Encouraged by her immediate and extended family to pursue these talents, she further developed her skills at Louisiana State University, where she graduated with a Bachelor’s in Interior Design. Helene has practiced design for esteemed hospitality firms such as Flick Mars and Simeone Deary, taking projects from concept development to execution. Outside of work, Helene enjoys cooking, traveling, and spending time with her family and friends.

Interior Designer I

Rachel Manning

Rachel graduated from Texas A&M University with a Bachelor of Science in Finance, which led her to her first career in Real Estate finance. Photography and branding were always a passion and Rachel pursued these creative outlets in her free time. When she and her husband were relocated to Houston, she knew it was the time to explore these passions as a full-time career. Rachel joined the Marie Flanigan Interiors team in 2016, where her wealth of knowledge and expertise in business, marketing, customer service, have helped Marie Flanigan Interiors become a household name.

Marketing and Brand Identity

Hazel Salihbasic

Hazel graduated from the University of Houston with a degree in Finance and Management. Over the past 10 years, she managed major projects for large companies such as Reliant and Direct Energy to manage their long-term strategic initiatives for Invista/Koch industries. Her strength lies in simplifying processes and her passion lies in creating value and home design. She joined Marie Flanigan in 2021 after working for a custom home builder, Alleanza Custom Homes, where she worked in Project Management. In her free time, Hazel loves to travel with her two young girls and her husband, and an international beach is usually their destination of choice. 

Operations Management

Nycole McMahon

Nycole McMahon’s passion for business administration and accounting led her to work in the oil and gas industry serving as a Senior Buyer and Expeditor for respected clientele including Phillips 66, Marathon, Ineos, and Enterprise Products. After leaving the oil and gas industry, Nycole’s love for interior design and antiques brought her to Marie Flanigan Interiors, where she coordinates the firm’s purchasing and logistics. In addition to her successful career, she enjoys time outside the office with her husband, two daughters, and golden retriever, Honey. She dedicates much of her free time to philanthropy work, including writing a monthly column for Hope For Three.

Procurement & Logistics

Kristen Emerson

Kristen Emerson attended The University of Texas, earning her Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing. After college, she lived on the East Coast while working for Shell Oil and 3M, then moved to Chicago and London, before returning home to Houston with her husband and three children. Having grown up in a creative household, where her mother was an interior designer and artist, Kristen has always had a passion for the arts. She values excellent craftsmanship and beautiful, one-of-a-kind items. Her excellent eye and love of design are valuable assets to the Marie Flanigan Interiors team. When not working, you can find her poring over coffee table design books, studying textiles, or traveling the world with family and friends

Administrative Relations