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Meet Macelle Skivington of M Design Build Studio in Highland Park

Today we’d like to introduce you to Macelle Skivington.

Macelle, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
According to the culture I was born in, my mother was cursed. Having given birth to 3 girls, the constantly annoying comment she would hear was “Wow, 3 girls?! No boys? Poor you.” No wonder, I was a tomboy growing up, choosing a skateboard over a Barbie doll. I had more fun helping my dad re-tile the roof the morning after prom than prom itself. I remember the day he first taught me how to properly hammer a nail with 2 steps. I eventually taught my now 10-year-old daughter how to properly drive a nail in with 2 steps.

I was constantly living in a construction zone with dad always extensively remodeling our home from adding an entire second floor or a bedroom on top of the garage. It’s no wonder I feel most at “home” on a construction site!

After my dad retired as the Director of Los Angeles Housing Department, we partnered up on his consulting gigs where I shadowed him on managing projects, clients, construction teams and banks for affordable housing projects.

When I flew away from the nest, my intense curiosity and constant hunger for new challenges gained me skills in commercial real estate development, multi-family and retail property brokerage, leasing, business productivity technology and sales.

While my father was a huge inspiration for me on why I started this firm, I also am excited to bring a wealth of my experience in other areas of the business to offer full solutions in design, building and business acceleration strategies. I’m passionate about creating solutions for my clients and helping them achieve their dreams whether it’s that cafe, restaurant or bringing comfort and joy in living spaces. I believe that for you to be your best self, you need to have an environment where you can thrive in. And that’s what we do. We create amazing spaces that feel good to be in.

Has it been a smooth road?
Now, I know why most people don’t follow their dreams. It was tough! To get the confidence I needed to start this business, I had to put my ego aside and enrolled at the UCLA Interior Architecture program as an “older” student and sacrificed time with my family and income stream. In the beginning, I was balancing work life and classes, waking up at 4 am in the morning to get class work done, then clock in to work, then clock out from work and then it was back to class work until midnight. It was an emotional roller coaster. After that ordeal, I’m still getting up as early as 4:30 am and have colored coded my time blocks as yellow time, green time, orange time and red time, according to the speed I can do my work. Yes, I still complain all the time, but then I think, “THIS IS A GOOD PROBLEM TO HAVE” and then I smile and just make everyday a great day!

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the M Design Build Studio, Inc. story. Tell us more about the business.
M Design Build Studio is a magical place. All employees who enter here will be earn stock options, profit sharing, and first option to entering into the syndication work we are developing and building. In addition, we have a charity component where all employees will also be dedicating their a portion of their time/work into, so the more money we make, the more we give. We are creating an environment where everyone wins and everyone feels good about working here for a very long time.

Our company creates amazing spaces that feel really good to be in for commercial and residential projects. Communication is 93% non verbal. If you have a place of business, it’s already saying something about you from the moment they look at your building. We help our clients with their goals to express themselves from restaurant re-designs and office spaces that need to give that great first impression, We work with clients to bring happiness, serenity and a space of awe in their home environments cultivating happier lives and relationships.

Our company is also working on our first of many many affordable housing developments to enhance the lives of those in need.

How do you think the industry will change over the next decade?
I can’t speak for the industry because I consider us a weird bird (or as some may say, “unique”). We are positioning ourselves, not only as an interior design firm, but as an affordable housing developer with a youthful design in mind. Our focus is design as we approach developing projects for Homeless Housing, Housing for Victims of Crime, Senior Housing, Affordable Housing, Transitional Youth, etc. There are so many people in our lives that have supported us to get us to this point, that we want to spend the rest our lives building incredible spaces to give people a chance to regain their sense of self, belonging and start building a new wonderful life full of possibilities for themselves. We have a soft spot in our hearts especially for women who were victims of crime. We have project in we are creating right now that will create a special space to help them blossom and flourish into the women they really were meant to be. Our vision for this building will have healing landscaping inside and outside, throughout, giving way to indoor/outdoor relationship throughout and on every floor, a large mural on the walls saying “Love Built This.” The first floor will have programming for supportive care for the residence like daycare, office space for work placement assistance, community kitchens for workshops and classes. community gardens, anything to enhance healing and hope for a brighter future.

This project will be the first of many projects and we intend to make a big impact in contributing to beautify our beloved city of Los Angeles.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Alex Martino Photography, Robin Foley Photography

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