Visitors to this year’s Charlottesville Design House, benefitting the Shelter for Help in Emergency (SHE), will see H.J. Holtz & Son craftsmanship in several areas: the entrance foyer, the living/dining room, and a guest bathroom. Holtz & Son is a regular contributor to charitable home shows, believing in the importance of philanthropy within the business model. “We’ve benefited from the support of our community for over 80 years and do at least one significant charity project annually as a way of showing our gratitude,” explained Rick Holtz. “This project just fit right in with our philosophy, so we were eager to be involved.”

Charlottesville’s SHE provides a safe environment, support and resources for survivors of domestic violence. This is the 10th year that a Design House has been decorated by local professionals and opened for tours, with proceeds benefitting SHE. This year’s house, Wind River, was built in 2001 and features more than 6,000 s.f. of living space. Information about visiting can be found at

Entrance Foyer

Franny Hurt, of Franny Hurt Design, found H.J. Holtz & Son in her quest to find the right lime wash contractor for her home. “They are only one of two [companies] in the state who apply this lime wash,” she says. After conversations with company staff, Hurt realized how much more the firm does. “When I [was given] the foyer and knew I wanted to do grasscloth, I thought this was a great opportunity to work with them on the wallpaper.”

Because the foyer is relatively small and dominated by the staircase to the second floor, Hurt says, she knew it would be important to update the space through paint and wall covering. With dark paint on the stair woodwork and trim, she needed something that would blend well. “Nothing is warmer than grasscloth wallpaper,” she notes. “It’s a great neutral that provides wonderful texture.”

Hurt said the Holtz & Son team’s thoughtfulness was evident during the scheduling process. “I wanted to move as quickly as possible, to get the paper up,” Hurt says. “But they recommended waiting because of all the traffic in the house: the furniture that was being moved up and down the stairs.

“Given the condition of the walls after it was all done, I was very glad [for the wait] because the paper would have gotten scuffed.”

Hurt also credits the craftsmen for their attention to detail in hanging the cloth. “With grasscloth, you don’t have to line up a pattern image, but you can get a stripe effect because the rolls have different lines,” she says. “With little direction from me, they did a fantastic job of laying out all those stripes.”

Living/Dining Room

While Wind River might be the first Charlottesville Design House for Chloe Ball and Kathleen Conroy of Kenny Ball Design, the pair has been working with H.J. Holtz & Son since their go-to wallpaper installer retired a few years ago. “They are very professional, and they come often to Charlottesville on business,” Ball says. “We have a lot of projects with them.”

For this project, Ball and Conroy had been conferring with Stephanie Snyder, owner of Palette Paint and Home, on a particular Farrow & Ball paint color (carried exclusively by Palette), when a visiting Farrow & Ball representative suggested wallpaper instead. The result: Original neutral beige walls now have Farrow & Ball Inchyra Blue (a dark blue-gray); shimmering gold wallpaper on the ceiling lightens the space. “It’s to die for,” Ball says.

Additionally, Holtz & Son took a table donated by Palette Paint & Home and painted it to resemble a tray that Ball and Conroy fancied. “It’s this papier-mâché tray that we were wild about,” Ball says. “We mailed the tray to Holtz & Son and said ‘This is what we want.’

“It’s so good!” she adds. “We can dream it, and they do it.” Ball says she and Conroy enjoy the partnership with Holtz & Son. “It’s always nice to recommend them because we know they’re going to do a great job.”

Guest Bathroom

Moyanne Harding, of Interiors by Moyanne in Lynchburg, first worked with Holtz & Son in a Richmond Symphony Design House, because she needed someone local to paint and wallpaper her assigned room. “I was really pleased; they did a beautiful job,” she says.

After discovering that Holtz & Son has expanded its service area to include Charlottesville, Harding was again happy to use their expertise. “My paper hanger from Lynchburg was too busy [for the Charlottesville Design House],” she says. “I do stuff all over Virginia, and they are willing to travel.”

Harding’s upstairs guest suite includes a “huge” bathroom in which she couldn’t change layout or tile. She decided to update the space with some new fixtures and Farrow & Ball wallpaper, “which turned out beautifully,” she says.

Holtz & Son’s professionalism is top-notch, Harding says. “As a designer, I’m really really busy, and I need someone to get in there and to the job fabulously,” she says. “I don’t have to call and check up on them.”

With this project, the team ran into a surprise at the end when there wasn’t quite enough wallpaper left to cover the walls in the water closet. “So we collaborated, and just did one wall,” Harding says. In the end, she adds, it’s about getting the job done right. “Holtz & Son knows the business,” she says, “What we do and why we do it that way, and the order we do it in.”

The Wind River house is open now through May 20thVisit the website for details.