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Designer Intentions: Art and Design With Victoria Holly 

Los Angeles-based artist and interior designer Victoria Holly, owner of eponymous design firm and The Holly Collective, enrolled in her first art class when she was just five years old. Now, 11 years since launching her own interior design firm and six years with her artwork collection, she believes the two are inherently intertwined. 

“Art is design and design is art,” explains Holly. “An empty room is akin to a blank canvas. Crafting a room’s design or a canvas’ plan involves color planning, spatial arrangement, texture, and depth, and the same mental process. And art always adds the finishing touch to any room, completely pulling it together.”

Designer and artist Victoria Holly. Photo by Natasha Lee.

Holly spent countless hours reading home design magazines and ultimately landed an internship with a well-known interior designer in high school. “Through that experience, I learned everything I needed to know about the industry and the behind-the-scenes of interior design,” says Holly. “I adored flipping through magazines like Town & Country or Architectural Digest, marveling at how so many different interiors and exteriors were beautiful in their own way. I loved that it was a different form of art than just drawing or painting.”

Free Form, Terracotta. Victoria Holly’s artwork is available on The Holly Collective and Chairish. Licensed reproductions are carried at West ElmBurke Decor, and beyond, and commissions and made-to-order options are available. 
Riptide in Ivory (left). Triangle in Black (right).

Holly, an avid gardener, is influenced by textures, layers, and southern France. “I love the south of France,” explains Holly. “I love when clean lines meet natural materials, such as the simple beauty of lavender overgrowth on a simple limestone pathway. There’s so much to be said about the beauty of unfussiness, both in interiors and art. And the same can be said also for texture, which has been the main inspiration for my artwork.”  

Triangle Up, Ivory, Paper (left). Select works by Holly (right).

For a recent remodel of a six-bedroom home in Pacific Palisades, Holly tapped into her love for warmth and texture. “Our clients had just moved from Boston and bought this new-build home,” says Holly. “They were excited to move into their first permanent home, but there was a lot of work to be done. The home was builder-grade so it needed to be filled with warmth and soul. And secondly, they weren’t moving in with really any furniture, so we had a lot of furniture to get and a lot of spaces to design.”

The primary bedroom with a four-poster black bed (left). Natural and botanical prints define the living room space (right). All photos by Lauren Engel of Engel Studios. 

To create additional light, Holly chose materials such as white oak, white brick, quartz, and white cabinetry. She also considered the family’s busy lifestyle with children and pets. “The scope of the project was to design three different living rooms, dining room, bedrooms, a theater room, refresh the kitchen, outdoor, and common areas,” explains Holly. “We drew inspiration from California style with coastal meets rustic. Bringing in olive trees, eucalyptus branches, worn leathers, aged oak woods, linen, and patinated metals. We also wanted to make sure that as beautiful as everything would be, it would also be durable, kid-friendly, and dog- friendly. They still are the proud owners of our favorite client dog to date: a fun-loving Golden Retriever who was always there to lend a helping paw during installs.”

The kitchen with black cabinets and leather counter stools (left). Photos by Lauren Engel of Engel Studios.

Although the home was a new build, it lacked design details the clients wanted, including a theater room with three large sofas and custom baby gates to match the stairwell design. “The goal was to warm it up,” says Holly. “And as with any home, there are always features you may not like. New doesn’t always mean right. So we went to work on using the home as a shell and adding in warmth and layering, so it truly transitioned into being a family home. Our firm designed most of the furniture and upholstery throughout the home, which is something we love doing. By doing this, we’re creating impactful pieces that are truly suited to our clients’ lifestyle as well as the scale of the home.”

Custom chairs in the theater room (left). A dining room with a white brick accent wall (center). A dramatic powder room with black walls and brass and leather finishes (right). Photos by Lauren Engel of Engel Studios.

Holly’s Art Hacks

Go Big

“First and foremost: go large. Don’t worry about scale. A large and properly-sized piece of art can not only fill your space properly but also add drama and luxury to an otherwise blah space.”

Add Color

“Don’t be afraid to go all neutral on furniture and then have your artwork be your colorful pop.”

Don’t Overlook the Frame

“Framing is just as important as the art itself. The right and well-made frame can dress up even a low-cost retail piece.”

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