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My Green Hero: Ami McKay

If you’ve been a reader of our humble blog for a while, you might remember my previous post about Pure by Ami McKay. Well, Ms. McKay certainly isn’t one to rest on her laurels because, since that post, her line has exploded! After a few back and forth emails, I got the scoop on Ami’s furniture line, her passion for finding inspiration and a potential singing career?! Read on…

Many textures combine flawlessly in a cozy living room by Ami.
What sparked your interest in furniture design? Have you always been a creative thinker?
Ami: Yes, I was definitely born this way. I am sure if I wasn’t an interior and furniture designer that I would still be focused in the arts – possibly a visual artist. That was a childhood dream. I also wanted to sing, though I wasn’t blessed with a talented set of lungs. I am sure others are grateful I didn’t set out on that particular path either.

Where did you learn your craft?
Ami: Trial and error! I didn’t have a mentor in the creative arts field. I stepped out on my own and tried my hand at things that called me. If I don’t succeed at a particular thing I always try something new. Edison didn’t invent the lightbulb without years of perseverance and failures. Though I am giving it my all – and having fun doing it!

Cyrilla Daybed
Where do you like to shop for things for your own home?
Ami: I am always on the hunt for pieces that speak to me. I think it is important to purchase furniture or accessories that capture a bit of magic – the essence of who we are which reflects our whimsical side, or our romantic side, or our pure, practical side.

What are the challenges you face in making your line eco-friendly?
Ami: Finding materials and showing people the benefits of sustainable, healthy furniture. Education- if customers knew that purchasing furniture without chemicals and fire retardants was better for our health and impacted our air quality in a significant way, they may look deeper into the world of soft furnishings and how they were manufactured.

Makeover Wish: Season 2 on HGTV
Your line has expanded significantly since I last blogged about Pure. Where do you see your line going in the future?
Ami: The possibilities are endless; I want to continue developing this line by adding other layers… fabric, lighting, wallpaper, books, etc. Anything that is for the home and kind to the earth. And, of course, to continue to develop the Pure furniture line. My inspiration board is chock full!

What new things are you working on right now that you can share?
Ami: Well, I have a few pokers in the fire. I would rather share them when I have confirmation – though they are very exciting!!!! I know… what a tease!

Makeover Wish: Season 1
Where do you find inspiration for your pieces?
Ami: I am inspired by everything! Nature, travels, architecture, sunsets. Truly any beautiful colour, shape, form, or lines that catch my eye and make my heart skip a beat.

Are there any designers or artists in particular that you look up to or draw inspiration from?
Ami: There are so many incredible artists and designers that impress me on a daily basis, though I cannot say with great conviction that one person stands out in my mind. I am moved more by a particular experience when viewing art or a beautiful space – it becomes personal.

Kiero Coffee Table (this one’s my favorite!)
Are there any trends you’ve seen lately that drive you nuts?
Ami: When the term “trend” is used with “eco”. There is nothing trendy about the green movement. It has been happening for a long time and thankfully others will now see the validity now of making healthier choices for us, our families, and the planet. That being said – I love that trendsetters are making inroads in incredible design with materials that are kind to the earth, and are incredibly sexy and beautiful!

If you could go on vacation anywhere to get inspired, where would you go?

Ami: Good question! I have been to Asia and Europe last year and I must say that if my eyes are open – I will be inspired. The galleries, restaurants, and fashion in Paris makes me want to stay there; the architecture and interior design in Italy is like living a dream where I don’t want to wake up; and the colour, fabrics, and temples in Thailand are so tactile and rich – I love visiting a pure culture. I couldn’t pick a favourite without feeling like I am cheating on all the others.

This girl has a lot going on!

If you haven’t gotten enough (I haven’t), visit Ami’s websites: and to find out more about this amazing (and super nice!) designer. And stay tuned… Hopefully I’ll find myself posting a part three in the future!
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