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InteriorsShop Tour

Shop Tour: Inside Washington, D.C.’s She Loves Me

by Garrett Fleming

Shop Tour: Inside Washington, D.C.'s She Loves Me, Design*Sponge

When I was first introduced to Holley Simmons and her Washington, D.C. home in 2017, I described her as a Jane of all trades. It’s a title she’d rightfully earned after succeeding as a freelance journalist, kickstarting a plant styling company and co-founding popular local workshop The Lemon Collective. Given her track record, you can imagine my lack of surprise when Holley recently told me she had something totally new brewing: a floral shop called She Loves Me.

Situated just below The Lemon Collective on D.C.’s Upshur Street, She Loves Me caters to those looking not only for beautiful blooms, but for interesting trinkets and baubles as well. In fact, it was the thrill of finding these unexpected goodies that partially inspired the store’s “moody and romantic” look. “I wanted [the] place to look like your eccentric aunt’s house, the one who insists on kissing you on the lips,” Holley explains. “I wanted to hide little surprises at every turn.”

Some of the most memorable surprises nod to the storefront’s previous 51 years as a shoe repair shop. On one shelf rests a shoe form the team found while renovating the space, and not too far away a leftover sign reads: “Not responsible for shoes left over 30 days.” “People get a kick out of that,” Holley tells us.

These “people” Holley mentions aren’t only customers, but Upshur Street’s other small business owners as well. Rarely a day goes by that the tight-knit community isn’t helping one another out or simply popping in for a laugh. “We’ve got residential neighbors stopping in for their weekly flowers, we’re buying our meals and coffee from the restaurants down the street… It’s a very neighborly community where it feels like you could stop in the business next door to borrow a cup of sugar, and they’d say ‘No problem; take the whole bag!’” What a great place to start a new chapter. Scroll down to see the shop, and enjoy! Garrett

Photography by Megan Graham Photography

Image above: Holley left her career as a freelance journalist and floral designer to run She Loves Me full-time. “When the shop was finally opened, it took me a minute to realize I’d have to show up to the same place for work every day!” she says.

Shop Tour: Inside Washington, D.C.'s She Loves Me, Design*Sponge
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The flower shop sits amidst other small businesses on D.C.’s Upshur Street. “It’s a very neighborly community where it feels like you could stop in the business next door to borrow a cup of sugar and they’d say, ‘No problem; take the whole bag!,’ and we want to help contribute to creating more of that,” Holley tells us.

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A display case that once held shoes now bursts with greenery.

Shop Tour: Inside Washington, D.C.'s She Loves Me, Design*Sponge
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The previous tenant had been in the space for 51 years. It needed work, but the architectural details and history immediately drew Holley to it.

Shop Tour: Inside Washington, D.C.'s She Loves Me, Design*Sponge
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She Loves Me has clients ranging from corporate and private events to interior landscaping. It keeps the small team on their toes and the 800-square-foot shop buzzing all day.

Shop Tour: Inside Washington, D.C.'s She Loves Me, Design*Sponge
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Holley decorated the space to resemble “an eccentric aunt’s house.” Nooks and crannies are always crammed full of surprises.

If you make design decisions out of stress, it likely won’t satisfy you in the long run.

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By painting the “bud bar” the same color as the walls, Holley provides the eyes a place to rest within the shop’s bubbling interior.

Shop Tour: Inside Washington, D.C.'s She Loves Me, Design*Sponge
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Accepting that you can’t do everything yourself and knowing when to ask for help are just a couple of the lessons Holley learned from the renovation.

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This Anthropologie wallpaper gets a lot of love from the shop’s customers. The illustration is so detailed, many think it’s actually a hand-painted mural.

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Florist Megan Adams enhanced the wallpaper’s impact by wrapping it in garland.

Shop Tour: Inside Washington, D.C.'s She Loves Me, Design*Sponge
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Vintage furniture complements the space’s aged charm.

Shop Tour: Inside Washington, D.C.'s She Loves Me, Design*Sponge
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The shoe sign is another relic from the building’s time as a shoe repair shop. “People get a kick out of that,” Holley says.

Shop Tour: Inside Washington, D.C.'s She Loves Me, Design*Sponge
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The team at She Loves Me keeps their space fresh by rotating product around and showcasing different local artists.

Shop Tour: Inside Washington, D.C.'s She Loves Me, Design*Sponge
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A shoe form found during the renovation sits amidst vases and greenery.

SOURCE LIST

Art curation – Nina O’Neil of Monochrome Collective
Artists featured – Kate Warren, Jeanne Garant, Katie Pumphrey, Lisa Noble
Furniture – Vintage
Wallpaper – Anthropologie
Woven curtain – Linny Giffin

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Comments

  • This place is absolutely enchanting. I love every single square inch. What a BEAUTIFUL thing to create in this world. :)

    Michelle

  • This has to be one of the most beautiful and stylish flower shops we’ve ever seen! Our eyes are drawn to so many pretty and interesting details — the perfect backdrop for appreciating blossoms and bouqets. And the name! We could spend hours there. Can’t wait to stop by when we’re in the area. What a find! Thanks for sharing. :)

  • Such a cool shop! I especially love the radiator cover; is this something you diy’d with a screen and frame?

  • Is the name “She Loves Me” a nod to the musical? I saw it on Broadway a few years ago and it takes place in a gorgeous parfumerie, full of treasures just like your shop!

  • I discovered this place after you featured the home tour of one of the Lemon Collective’s founders. This place sells the most loveliest scented candles, and their greeting cards are cheeky and meaningful. I am now constantly recommending She Loves Me and the other shops and restaurants on Upshur to all my out of town guests. Very cool vibe, very good people. THE BEST!