Plant & Desert Magic in a Renovated Joshua Tree House

updated Apr 30, 2019

Plant & Desert Magic in a Renovated Joshua Tree House

updated Apr 30, 2019
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Home Type
Square feet
Sq ft

Name: Lindsay Hollinger, kitty Hewson
Location: Joshua Tree, California
Size: 1236 square feet
Years lived in: 1.5 years, Owned

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Walking into Lindsay’s home is like walking into a desert landscape of whites and cacti and hues that just make you feel good. Lindsay felt these same good vibes when she first visited the desert, deciding to make it her home. The dreamy desert look came naturally once she moved in and began to decorate. So inspired is she by her natural surroundings, that she doesn’t just live in her home — she spreads creativity through workshops and retreats.

As Lindsay says, “I fell in love with Joshua Tree after 10 years in Los Angeles. I came seeking open space, a slower pace, a more affordable cost of living, and time to explore my creativity. Joshua Tree’s close proximity to Los Angeles allows me to feel connected, but I can enjoy a different pace of life. My professional work encompasses a little bit of everything — I specialize in design, creative direction and illustration for the gift, stationery, and home décor industries. I am also a painter, and since moving to Joshua Tree I have been focusing my time on building my studio practice. I have designed the house to be versatile — it’s my home, an Airbnb, and my studio. I also host creative workshops and retreats. I also live with my old kitty, Hewson, who is 16 years old.”

Apartment Therapy Survey:

Our Style: Minimal Bohemian / #desertvibes

Inspiration: The desert landscape, Scandinavian design, Japanese design, Georgia O’Keeffe

Favorite Element: The desert light. I was never a morning person until I moved to the desert — the light is so gorgeous and the big windows in all the rooms bring the outside magic in.

Biggest Challenge: The floors. I did most of the demo myself in August of 2015 (it was 100 degrees and the air conditioner wasn’t functional). Old carpet, layers of linoleum, and wood laminate made it an arduous task. I was very fortunate to find some amazing help through friends, so I hired two local craftsmen to help. They helped me finish the demolition, and did all the floor grinding and sealing, put in baseboards, and did some work on the bathrooms. It takes a village!

What Friends Say: The two biggest compliments I’ve ever received from friends who’ve come to visit — “I had the best sleep!” and “It looks just like it does on Instagram!” There’s a special kind of peace in JT, and it comes through to my guests. The master bedroom is very comfy — you can escape and sleep the sleep of ages.

Biggest Embarrassment: Currently, the exterior — Phase 2 is redesigning the back porch, creating an entertaining outdoor area, and painting the house so it aligns with design of the interior. I’m currently saving and working on the redesign plans. Can’t wait to try my hand at landscape design and incorporate native plants. I have visions of a white sage and lavender patch!

Proudest DIY: The Hygge & West x Justina Blakeney Cosmic Desert Wallpaper — installed it ALL BY MYSELF. It’s a show stopper and I absolutely love it.

Biggest Indulgence: My Vega dining room light pendant from CB2. The fixture is perfect for the space and was a splurge for my limited budget.

Best Advice: Take your time with design, and keep it simple. I wanted to make all the design decisions right away when I bought the house, and finish as soon as possible. My budget forced me to reconsider my priorities. Spending time living in the space allowed me to make better decisions about how I designed the space, and what I really needed. Half the stuff I had spent hours poring over in the early stages wasn’t the right fit, and subsequently I had a clear vision of what I needed.

Dream Sources: I am obsessed with the architecture and design of Mason St Peter, and it would be a dream come true to do a project with him!

I love the design of Carl Hansen and Son — I toured a Modernism Week house (in Palm Springs) and was in love with their beautiful, understated, impeccable pieces. Fellow desert artist Lily Stockman is an incredible painter — I dream of hanging one of her big paintings in the living room someday.


Walls and trim for all rooms Behr Premium Plus Ultra Semi-Gloss Enamel finish in Ultra Pure White from Home Depot.
Kitchen cabinets are Behr Marquee in Ultra Pure White Gloss.

Scarf/ Wall hanging “Tent” from Blockshop Textiles
Gold Meditation Cushion from Samaya
Rope & Copper log holder by The Rope Co.
White Bamboo Side Chair, sideboard bookcase, stools, side tables, hats, tchotchkes and the real sheepskin are thrifted from various sources over the years.
The couch was a hand-me-down from a friend that I had re-upholstered.
Wooden Cactus from Four Leaf Wood Shop
Coffee Table is from Urban Outfitters
Kiva ladder is from Sunland Home Décor
Yarn-wrapped branch and Macrame curtain were made by me
Kilim Pillows from ShopFleaMarketFab

Table legs from The Old Timber Mill on Etsy
Lighting Fixture “Vega” from CB2

Rug – Magical Thinking Printed Boucherite Rug: Urban Outfitters
Airplant hangers, cactus ring holder – Zebra Wing Studio on etsy
Concrete tiny cactus planters from Concrete Geometric
Cabinet Hardware is Franklin Brass Francisco 3″ handles from Amazon
Miscellaneous Cutting boards from

Blanket — Pendleton Woolen Mills
Side tables – Home Goods
Reading lights – Urban Outfitters Eyeball Sconce in brass
Faux Sheepskin rugs – Lulu and Georgia
Jute rug, faux sheepskin pillow – Ikea
Painting – Kristin Texeira
Moon Hanging – made by me
Bench is custom built by Mojave Wood
Kilim Pillows were a flea market find

Wallpaper – Cosmic Desert in Ebony by Hygge & Westt x Justina Blakeney
Stool – Target
Small Kiva Ladder – Sunland Home Décor
Sink and Basin from Amazon
Countertop – Ikea

Handwoven Striped Runner and small wall tapestry by pidgepidge
Tiny Paintings on shelf by Kristin Texeira
Lumbar pillow on bench is Local & Lejos
Clay Moon Hanging by Lennon & Birdie
Indigo Pillow Cases by Erica Reitman
Side tables, lamps, and crochet pillow from Target.
Faux Sheepskin rug from Marshalls.
Yellow Pillows are hand-dyed by me!

Rug from Experimental Vintage
Triangle shelf from the Small and Savage Wild
Hand print by Emily Kelly of
Sink & fixture from
Counter top from Ikea

The yellow owl is named Carl. He has been with me many years, and started as a joke between me and my best friend Whitney Leigh Morris—she hid him in my Home Depot cart while we were shopping (he’s supposed to scare pigeons from the garden) but I loved him so much I kept him and gave him his shiny yellow coat.
Grey chair from Target
All desks, tables, white chair are from Ikea
Faux Sheepskin is from Lulu and Georgia

Baskets and other accessories throughout the house:
I get my accessories from a variety of sources but my most favorite are
Xinh + Co – baskets
BKB Ceramics (triangle pattern dish and planters)
Prints & journals — Land and She by Emily Kelly
Ceramics — Urthen terra cotta and ivory bowl, terra cotta & cork jar

Thanks, Lindsay!

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