ABOUT HOLLY KUHN, OWNER OF OLD GLORY ANTIQUES
“It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are.” -E.E. Cummings
I grew up in a very loving, hard-working, practical family. My father’s job took us back and forth between Dallas and Oklahoma City several times, so I really think of each place as home. In 1981 I graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a degree in Accounting (practical!) and promptly moved back to Dallas to begin my career as a CPA.
As I performed my accounting functions I became known among my supervisors for the presentation of my work papers. Long before Excel spreadsheets, we worked with 10-column work papers, pencils, and erasers, which provided me the opportunity to turn ordinary columns of numbers into something a little less ordinary. I once had a supervisor tell me that my work always came “wrapped in such a pretty package!” I started to acknowledge some creative rumblings, despite my practical voice asking how I would make a living at “creative!” My journey of personal discovery was just beginning.
In 1985 I married my husband Brian and moved to Denver. I retired from accounting and stayed home to care for our children. As I became involved in various volunteer activities, I found myself declining the office of treasurer and instead exploring the more creative assignments such as the event planning and the hospitality committees. In 1988, as we were settling into our first real home, I read a book that greatly influenced the way I set up housekeeping. The book, Living a Beautiful Life, by Alexandra Stoddard, describes 500 ways to add elegance, order, beauty and joy to the little things that make up every day of your life. With an 18-month old and a new baby, I was in need of order. Elegance and beauty seemed an impossible dream!
I embraced the ideas and ideals presented by this book, and as I began the process of creating order and beauty in our home I discovered I was bursting with creative urges! Poring over decorating books and magazines became a passion. I happened upon a passage buried in an article in Country Living that gave new direction to my journey of personal discovery: “My entire life, I wished to be an artist with a traditional medium. Then one day I looked around my home and realized I am an artist. My home is my canvas.” What began as a collection of ideas about home decorating gained new energy, blossomed into a passion, and eventually grew into my first retail store.
Old Glory Antiques story
I spread my entrepreneurial wings in 1996 with the opening of my first antique shop, Off the Beaten Path, in our neighborhood shopping center. I immediately felt like I had found my place. I loved the challenge of keeping the store fresh and interesting, I loved taking a blank slate and making it beautiful, I loved searching for unique pieces, and I loved the interaction with so many wonderful customers. Since 1996 I have had several shops around town all with that unmistakable “Holly” style: a tasteful, carefully edited combination of the uncommon, the unexpected, and the beautiful. Old Glory Antiques is the current incarnation of my creative rumblings, a business that continues to grow and evolve. I love what I do every day!
As an entrepreneur possessing a degree in accounting and an undeniable urge to create, I bring to my business a rare combination of business expertise and creative intuition. Three elements are at the core of my success in business:
~Passion for what I do: “Let what you love be what you do.” -Rumi
~Patience in recognizing that a successful business does not sprout overnight.
~Perseverance in learning to balance the demands of family and business and remaining flexible through difficult economic times.
I have been actively involved in the Denver community since arriving in 1985, volunteering with such groups as the Junior League of Denver, Denver Alumnae Club of Pi Beta Phi, Cherry Creek School District, and The Gathering Place. The experience I gained working with these organizations and the personal relationships I developed have provided direction and clarity on this journey of personal discovery. I feel fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with such outstanding organizations.
Several significant people have made my creative dream possible: my parents, who provided my first happy home; my husband Brian, whose unconditional love and support have made it possible for me to discover what I love doing; and my three children (Brett, Tom and Laura) who fill my heart and my home with love and laughter. Thank you for joining me on this journey…I can’t wait to see where it takes us next!