AMER­I­CAN IN­SPIRED

COLORADO SHOP­KEEPER HOLLY KUHN BRINGS A LOFTY HOME DOWN TO EARTH WITH HOME­SPUN TOUCHES.

Country Sampler's Prarie Style - - Contents - WRIT­TEN BY Mary Forsell. PHO­TOGRAPHED BY Mark Lohman. STYLED BY Fifi O’neill.

Colorado shop­keeper Holly Kuhn brings a lofty home down to earth with home­spun touches.

“I couldn’t be­lieve the qual­ity of the light!” Holly says. There were other perks as well: wal­nut floors, triple crown mold­ing, a vaulted and beamed kitchen, and au­then­tic cop­per and stone ex­te­rior de­tails. Best of all, be­cause it was built in 2007, the house didn’t need any ren­o­va­tions, which was a very good thing for busy Holly, the owner of des­ti­na­tion shop Old Glory An­tiques and the mas­ter­mind of the an­nual vin­tage show of the same name—not to men­tion her pop-up shop held at the Round Top Fair in Texas twice a year.

With soar­ing ceil­ings and four bed­rooms, the house is large enough to ac­com­mo­date Holly’s three 20-some­thing chil­dren, who all live in the area and visit of­ten. “The dining room is spa­cious and a warm and won­der­ful place to en­joy spe­cial oc­ca­sions with my fam­ily,” Holly says. “We cel­e­brated our daugh­ter’s grad­u­a­tion from col­lege in this room shortly af­ter we moved in!”

But, Holly had an­other rea­son up her sleeve for want­ing the house: It is also large enough to ac­com­mo­date her taste for over­size fur­nish­ings. “I al­ways go for the big, au­then­tic pieces,” she ad­mits. “They make a state­ment in a room. I don’t want fur­nish­ings that have been re­fin­ished. It’s best if they’re tar­nished or worn, like the ta­ble in my dining room. You don’t have to worry about spilling some­thing on it. I need for spa­ces to be com­fort­able and func­tional, a place where peo­ple want to spend time.”

Though she spe­cial­izes in Amer­i­can an­tiques and does most of her trea­sure hunt­ing west of the Mis­sis­sippi, Holly is not a purist when it comes to dec­o­rat­ing in­te­ri­ors. “I love mix­ing old and new,” she says. “Like those funky pen­dant light fix­tures in the living room and dining room. They’re metal and sort of 1960s-look­ing, but they’re ac­tu­ally brand new. I feel they en­hance my vin­tage pieces.”

One of the joys of vis­it­ing both Holly’s shop and home is that you are never over­whelmed—she keeps things sim­ple, fresh and fun. “I do love my rooms un­clut­tered,” she says. “I edit, edit, edit my dis­plays. I al­ways think less is more. It’s hard to put your fin­ger on the process—it’s in­tu­ition. It also comes with time. You can’t just do a room in an hour or even in a day. It takes me a week or more to de­cide on a dis­play for a man­tel or a ta­ble.”

This me­thod­i­cal ap­proach is hard­wired into Holly’s na­ture. In fact, she used to be an ac­coun­tant. “My spe­cialty was 10-col­umn work­sheets,” she says with a laugh. “I was al­ways try­ing to dress them up and give them fancy fonts and touches. Peo­ple used to com­ment on how artis­tic they looked.” Though she al­ready had an out­let for cre­ativ­ity in dec­o­rat­ing her home with col­lectibles, Holly wanted to take the next step. In 1997, she de­cided to take the plunge and open her first shop.

For­tu­nately, Brian, whom she met at the Uni­ver­sity of Ok­la­homa some 30 years ago, wel­comed the idea. “We found a trailer, loaded the kids in the car, and drove all over Texas and Ok­la­homa. It took nine months, but then I was ready to open my shop. I had never worked a day of re­tail, and if I had known then what I do now, I might never have done it. But I’m glad I did!”

LEFT: “I would never dream of putting a table­cloth on our old farm­house ta­ble,” Holly says. “The wood’s patina is gor­geous, and pretty pit­ted.” ABOVE: Em­bel­lished vin­tage grain-sack chair cov­ers add to the rustic feel of the room.

BE­LOW: A re­claimed tin ceil­ing scrap makes a strik­ing con­trast with an aged con­crete urn.

ABOVE: Worn and won­der­ful re­claimed wood strips serve as pan­els for an over­size clock face that doesn’t ac­tu­ally tell time. Holly loves it for its patina and, of course, its sten­ciled Ro­man nu­mer­als.

BE­LOW: Ris­ing like a sculp­ture, an old French li­brary lad­der dis­plays vol­umes and ar­chi­tec­tural rem­nants. RIGHT: In the fam­ily room, an am­ple cof­fee ta­ble dis­plays a flo­ral cen­ter­piece in a gal­va­nized pail. The ot­toman is from Holly’s Amer­i­cana Col­lec­tion.

Scrim-like shades in the break­fast nook fil­ter

morn­ing light. The con­tem­po­rary up­hol­stered bench and stools make a sur­pris­ing foil to the retro ta­ble, a con­vinc­ing-look­ing re­pro­duc­tion that Holly

car­ries in her store.

LEFT: LEFT: A fan­ci­ful ar­chi­tec­tural hood frames a stain­less kitchen range, soft­en­ing its industrial look. The bread­boards hang­ing on the wall above are road-trip finds. RIGHT: RIGHT: Ex­posed pine

beams, a wal­nut floor and a cherry cen­ter is­land bring ex­tra warmth and tex­tu­ral touches to the creamy white kitchen. Painted cab­i­netry dis­guises ap­pli­ances for

a time­less look. White earthen­ware and perky polka-dot­ted and checked pitch­ers, mugs and can­is­ters are on dis­play. Easy-to-clean pol­ished gran­ite coun­ter­tops

add nat­u­ral stone ap­peal and sub­tle pat­tern.

OP­PO­SITE: A sunny living room cor­ner also serves as a home of­fice. The huge chest of 20 draw­ers is stuffed not with nap­kins or sil­ver but with pa­per­work and files. Brian added casters so that Holly could use it as a mas­sive rolling fil­ing cabi­net. Dis­played above the chest and on the ad­ja­cent wall, char­coal-colored tin signs send happy mes­sages. THIS PAGE, ABOVE: The over­stuffed living room sofa and ot­toman ta­ble are an ap­peal­ing gath­er­ing spot in the living room. Holly dis­plays a framed flag over the man­tel, a nod to her busi­ness, Old Glory An­tiques. The funky metal light fix­ture cre­ates a mod­ern mood.

BE­LOW RIGHT: In the serene mas­ter bed­room, ev­ery­thing is colored in shades of beige, taupe and choco­late. The linen-up­hol­stered sleigh bed is a re­fined coun­ter­point to the wood trunk and wicker suit­case at its foot. BE­LOW LEFT: Chunky wooden prayer beads and a tar­nished lov­ing cup bring an au­then­ti­cally old patina to a bed­room cor­ner.

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