pretty girl

Rachelle Padgett

Interior Designer & Healthy Materials Consultant

Like many designers, my story starts at a tender age. My childhood bedroom was splashed with rainbows, and the ceiling painted a brilliant blue full of cottony clouds. I got an unusual thrill by rearranging furniture, and agreed with my mom’s frustration that the kitchen could function so much better with a proper pantry and more counter space. Some of my fondest memories are of weekends spent sneaking into half-constructed homes and taking trips to the hardware store with my dad; I, happily engaged in the paint aisle, while he puttered around the power tools.

My parents, an engineer and science teacher, instilled in me a deep respect for the natural world.  After moving from Virginia to California, meandering through nonprofit work and returning to school, I founded Synthesis Interiors & Color in 2007 to bring eco-friendly interior design to a wide range of clientele. The Green Materialist takes an even deeper dive into conscientious sourcing, specifying safe alternatives to conventional building materials that meet the highest standards for their environmental and social impact.

When I’m not hiking or on a yoga mat, I volunteer as the Outreach Coordinator for the West Berkeley Design Loop, promoting cross pollination of the East Bay’s bounty of local design resources. I'm also faculty at UC-Berkeley Extension, my design alma mater, where I teach a course in Interior Finishes and Materials.