Jennifer Holmes’s Must List

The Dear Lillie founder shares seven must-haves for her own home.


For Jennifer Holmes, who masterminds the blog and online shop Dear Lillie, style is an ever-changing thing. A dedicated DIYer with a penchant for holiday decor, she’s constantly refreshing her home’s look: “My husband travels a lot, and every time he comes home, he’s like, wait, what happened?” she laughs.

And with two fast-growing toddlers in the house, she’s also frequently mixing things up to accommodate her family’s changing needs. Her favorite pieces, then, are the ones that can be used over and over, in a multitude of ways. Here, the recent Joss & Main curator tells us about some of the items her house wouldn’t be a home without.

Wingback chairs in neutral tones
“I love side chairs and wingback chairs in neutral colors,” Holmes says. The reason? Their ability to transition from living room to bedroom to reading nook with ease. “In the two homes we’ve had so far, I’ve been able to use the same chairs, and we’ve been able to change the rooms by keeping all the main furniture in neutral colors,” she explains.

Holmes is “addicted” to mirrors, she proclaims. “I melt when I see a pretty mirror in a store.” It’s not just the aesthetics she’s drawn to, but the way they enhance light. “We live in a townhouse, and we have no light coming in from either side, just the front and the back. Having mirrors helps reflect light, and give the illusion that it’s not as dark in here.” One of her favorite style tricks is to dress them up for holidays; for this Christmas season, she adorned all the mirrors in her home with wreaths and garlands.

Small dressers
Both of Holmes’s daughters’ rooms currently house dressers that once resided elsewhere. “I like them because they have clean lines and they’re simple,” Holmes explains.  One was in living room, where she used it as a chest, but that’s just the beginning. “Small dressers can be used in bedrooms, in hallways as consoles, or in dining rooms as sideboards. I have one mirrored dresser that’s been in practically every room in the house!”

“I’m lucky my husband doesn’t complain and make me put up ceiling fans throughout the house,” Holmes says. “I love chandeliers, and how they can really dress up a room.” Her favorites? “I like eye-catching, oversized chandleliers, that have a relatively simple shape.”


End tables that can double as nightstands
Another easily-relocated piece is the end table, Holmes says. “The end tables I’m using as nightstands in my master bedroom have also been downstairs next to my sofa.” To ensure you have lots of options, pick a style that can take on multple looks.

A play kitchen
While Holmes’s living areas are relatively clutter-free, they do make room for fun, interactive toys for her daughters Lillie and Lola. None has been a bigger hit than her daughters’ wooden play kitchen set. “We’ve gotten so much use out of it!” Holmes raves. “My daughter would use it literally every day.” Bottom line: if you’re going to take up space with toys, make them ones the little ones love–and make them high-quality.



 Vases and pitchers
“I love vases full of fresh flowers, especially rustic-looking ones,” Holmes reveals. But her go-to vessel for seasonal arrangement is a pitcher: I have a couple that I don’t think I’ve ever used for actual drinks,” she laughs. “I regularly have things coming out of them.”