Holley & Audrey's All the Pretty Colors Home

House Tour

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Name: Holley, Dining Editor for the Washington Post Express, and Audrey
Location: Mt. Pleasant, Washington DC
Size: 1200 square feet
Years lived in: 2.5 years; renting

One can only imagine the stream of fun ideas and shared secrets that two cool, creative women who are equally inspired by the Anthropologie-meets-Kinfolk aesthetic must dream up. Thankfully, roommates Holley and Audrey were kind enough to let us in on their secrets, and get a glimpse inside all the great DIY projects happening inside their DC home.

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Finding a great apartment in the city usually involves all types of online searching, putting out mass e-mails to your network to let them know you're in the market for a space, or eavesdropping on the conversations of moving men to see where their next job is (or maybe that's just me?). But thankfully for Holley Simmons, the scoop came from just across the hall. A friend who lived in the building tipped her off that the apartment across the hall was going to be made available soon and to reach out to the landlord. A couple of quick e-mail exchanges and a few phone calls later the apartment was hers, practically sight unseen.

Warmth radiates from the burnt orange wall in the foyer, and wraps around to the dining room painted in emerald green and fitted with vintage chairs, bar stools and midcentury-style tables. There's a subtle elegant masculinity about the living room that juxtaposes beautifully with the more whimsical mint green chairs and chevron rug in the dining room. A fully tufted (and super comfy) brown leather chester sofa sits in the living room against a navy blue wall. A gallery wall of picture frames above the velvet natural sofa draws the eye upward, giving the elusive appeal of a taller room.

Both Holley and Audrey spend a great deal of time at home either working or entertaining. And if you want to experience some of the creative energy of these two cool women, Holley, teaches fun terrarium classes from their space.

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Apartment Therapy Survey:

My Style: Open-air markets in foreign countries, Audrey’s mom (an artist), homes that make you feel immediately comfortable.

Favorite Element: The location. Mount Pleasant is a really special community, and we love that we can see the library from our kitchen window. Also, with the exception of the rugs, the map and the desk in the foyer, every item in the apartment cost less than $100.

Biggest Challenge: Getting the paint color right for the dining room. We painted it three times! First it was a really bad pastel purple, then it was a minty blue that looked too much like a Tiffany’s box. Audrey spotted a picture of a green room on a design blog, and we knew we’d found our color!

What Friends Say: “Are there any open apartments available to rent in the building?”

Biggest Embarrassment: We’re lacking on modern appliances: there’s no dishwasher and the washer/dryer is in the basement. Also, Holley teaches terrarium classes out of the dining room, and sometimes you can find a little dirt on the floor.

Proudest DIY: Holley made the table on wheels in the living room using recycled materials from Community Forklift. It cost only $65 to make!

Biggest Indulgence: The kilim rug in the living room. It was a Christmas gift from Holley’s grandmother. She bought it in Richmond at a store that was going out of business.

Best Advice: If you see something you love, buy it. Don’t worry about where you’ll put it/if you have space for it. If it really speaks to you, you’ll find a way to make it fit.

Dream Sources: Locally, we love Off the Beaten Track Warehouse (the city’s best kept vintage secret). Abroad,we’d love to take home a few textiles from Marrakech and Mexico.

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Resources of Note:

PAINT & COLORS

  • Foyer - Monarch Wing (Valspar)
  • Dining room - Luscious Green (Valspar)
  • Living room - Chimney Smoke (Valspar)
  • Holley's rom - Paddle (Valspar)
  • Audrey's room - Peek-a-Boo Blue (Valspar)

  • ENTRY

  • Estate Sale
  • Body form: From GoodWood
  • Rug: Ikea
  • Africa map: Miss Pixies
  • Desk: New York

  • LIVING ROOM

  • Natural Sofa: Room and Board
  • Brown Tufted Leather Sofa: Simon Vintage ($75)
  • Painting Easel: TK
  • Coffee table: Holley made using materials from Community Forklift (Hyattsville, MD)
  • Bull head: Marshalls
  • Turkish Rug: Store in Richmond, VA (now closed)

  • DINING ROOM

  • Consul Table: Handmade
  • Dining room table: Simon Vintage
  • Chairs: Mom n' Pop Thrift
  • Bookshelves: Estate sale $30
  • Stools: Mom n Pop
  • Rug: Marshalls
  • Pantry in Kitchen: Goodwill on H St.
  • Paintings on wall: Estate sales

  • AUDREY'S BEDROOM

  • Mirror: Mom n' Pop Thrift on Georgia Avenue
  • Chandelier: Shop in Kensington, MD
  • Dresser knobs: Anthropologie
  • Rug: Fab.com

  • HOLLEY'S BEDROOM

  • Bed and Headboard: Designed by Audrey’s Mom
  • Comforter and Pillow: Ikea and Dwell
  • Dresser: Craigslist
  • Sconces: Bookstore in Cleveland Park (now closed)
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    Thanks, Holley & Audrey!

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    (Image credits: Nicole Crowder)