Meet the Team!

Stephanie Williams | President

A native of Ohio turned Chicagoan, Stephanie Williams founded Variegated Designs in 2016 with the mission of bringing modern plants to the modern office. Having worked in the interior plantscape industry for over fifteen years, her background in horticulture extends to her functional, yet imaginative approach to design ventures of all kinds, applying the same knowledge to lush greenery as she would to thoughtfully selected faux plants. A longtime passion for flora inspired Stephanie to attend The Ohio State University with a focus on landscape horticulture, and she continued her education by studying plant conservation at The National Tropical Botanical Garden in Kalaheo, Hawaii. 

 

Since returning to her midwestern roots, Stephanie's unique designs have graced some of Chicago's most notable buildings, including the newly renovated Old Post Office, as well as headquarters for brands such as Google and ShopRunner. From lavishly whimsical hanging "plant clouds" to more contained terrariums and moss-filled wall frames, her designs share the same goal: to bring vibrancy and life to whatever space they inhabit. Currently, she's excited to be working on installations for the renowned Willis Tower lobbies.

 

Always game for a challenge, Stephanie welcomes the opportunity to work with local architects and designers to add green to any space. She feels fortunate to work with a strong team of Chicago-based collaborators and consultants, including artists, photographers, horticulturists, and other "makers" who ensure each project is a unique, specially-tailored concept. When she's not bringing her botanical designs to life, she enjoys cooking, cappuccinos, and spending time with her husband, Weiant, and their daughters, Cibi and Roe.

Amy Lukas | Designer

A native of Champaign-Urbana, IL, Amy has nearly a decade of experience in both indoor and outdoor plant design. Thanks to the help of a friend (and a library book!), she started her journey in horticulture by planting a small backyard vegetable garden, and soon found that she was obsessed with learning as much as she could about plants and their endless possibilities. Just a few years after her first foray into the plant world, she became a certified Master Gardener and started volunteering in the propagation greenhouse at the Garfield Park Conservatory. She also learned the ropes of urban agriculture at a non-profit farm in Chicago, working alongside a dedicated team of growers to provide fresh vegetables to local food pantries. Eventually, she traded her previous career to work at her favorite neighborhood garden center, which was where she realized garden design was her unexpected, yet true, calling. Since joining the team at Variegated, Amy has used her expertise to create harmonious designs that extend to outdoor plant installations for residential and commercial spaces. She enjoys sharing the therapeutic benefits of incorporating plants into the spaces that we inhabit daily. When she's not nurturing plants, she loves spending time with her son, Olen! 

Chelsea Ross | Project Manager

Originally from Connecticut, Chelsea made her way to Chicago to study photojournalism at Columbia College. Post-graduation, she spent several years honing her eye for detail as a wardrobe/prop stylist and photographer for various athletic and lifestyle brands. After meeting Stephanie, she started photographing Variegated’s earlier projects, which sparked an interest in plant design. She currently oversees Variegated's social media and photography, and assists with installations, proposal designs/development, website building, and servicing/maintaining live plants for existing installations. Chelsea holds degrees from both Columbia College and NYC's Fashion Institute of Technology, and when she's not working with plants, she's either on the hunt for Chicago's best bagels or taking glamour shots of her cats with her collection of house plants.