Holly Hunt (USA, b. 1945)

The success of Holly Hunt—both the designer and her eponymous empire of textile and furnishings showrooms—is based on instinct. The Chicago-based Hunt trusts her own tastes, reflected in her signature lines of elegant, low-key furniture and fabrics. She also trusts her judgment about the wants of the buying public, and this savvy sensibility has allowed her to cultivate and market the work of a range of contemporary talents, from minimalists like Christian Liaigre to eccentrics like Christian Astuguevieille. Hunt is a design world impresario — a prominent arbiter for stylish modern interiors and known foremost for fabrics, furniture designs and light fixtures. Modern sophistication, attention to detail, and a desire to cultivate talented contemporary designers are at the crux of the company’s success.

     Born in central Texas to schoolteacher parents, Hunt was a creative girl who made her own clothes and bickered with her mother about decor. After graduating from Texas Tech, Hunt worked as department-store buyer and costume jewelry designer before marrying and helping her husband build a multimillion dollar transport company. Her hobby was decorating their homes. After the two divorced, Hunt purchased a showroom in the Chicago Merchandise Mart in 1983. Within 10 years, she was winning applause for her understated designs, her lavish showroom parties and her eye for rising design stars. Liaigre was her first discovery. Correctly surmising that his pared down furniture in dark wood would play well in the United States in the aftermath of the go-go ’80s, Hunt began marketing the French designer’s work in 1994.

     Over the subsequent years Hunt has added a half-dozen showrooms and, following her own style barometer, has taken on other fresh talents, including glassmaker Alison Berger, French designer Christophe Pillet and couturier Ralph Rucci, making a foray into home design.

     One constant over that time have been the aesthetics of Hunt’s own designs. Her fabrics — the first choice of many dealers when re-upholstering vintage seating — are understated, mixing muted colors and updates of classic patterns. Her furniture is simple and refined. As you will see on these pages, the name Holly Hunt represents a sense of timelessness and sophistication.

Pair of Boke Coffee Tables by Christian Liaigre for Holly Hunt ,1998 France
Dimensions: H 15 in. W 33.5 in. D 33.5 in.
Dealer Location: New York, NY
Pair of Boke Coffee Tables by Christian Liaigre fo...
Christian Liaigre, Holly Hunt
1990s French Modern Coffee and Cocktail Tables
Both tables have a dark brown stained oak tops supported by four leg platform base in black stained oak.
Dimensions: W 9 ft. 1 in.
Dealer Location: Dallas, TX
Materials & Techniques: Wool, Silk
Wool and Silk Rug from Holly Hunt's Beyond Borders...
Holly Hunt
21st Century and Contemporary Modern More Carpets
Wool, Silk
Beautiful rug with charcoal, ivory and chartreuse colors. Rug is very lightly used. Has been cleaned and has some overall discoloration and yellowing in the ivory section but looks very...
Nabab Sofa by Christian Liaigre
Dimensions: H 29 in. W 5 ft. 10 in. D 40.5 in.
Dealer Location: San Leandro, CA
Materials & Techniques: Upholstery
Nabab Sofa by Christian Liaigre
Christian Liaigre, Holly Hunt
Late 20th Century Modern Sofas
Sculptural sofa by Christian Liaigre for Holly Hunt. The sofa is raised on a solid oak base.
Macassar Ebony Side Table by Holly Hunt
Dimensions: H 24 in. W 34 in. D 22 in.
Dealer Location: Austin, TX
Materials & Techniques: Macassar
Macassar Ebony Side Table by Holly Hunt
Holly Hunt
Late 20th Century American Art Deco Tables
A stunning side table by Holly Hunt, rectangular in form with curvaceous tapered legs. Exotic grain wood with a heavily lacquered finish.
Pair of Holly Hunt Slipper Chairs in Amazing New Upholstery
Dimensions: H 36 in. W 30 in. D 28 in.
Dealer Location: Norwalk, CT
Materials & Techniques: Upholstery
Pair of Holly Hunt Slipper Chairs in Amazing New U...
Holly Hunt
1990s American Modern Slipper Chairs
Holly Hunt wood frame slipper chairs with new very high end upholstery. Zebra style striping.