Stepping inside Andrea Horan’s house is like taking a mini holiday, complete with palm trees, cocktails, and, em, a boat bar…
“I love being surrounded by as much colour and pattern as possible at all times,” laughs Andrea Horan, who co-founded kitsch Dublin nail bar Tropical Popical with her sister Michelle. Her home is certainly a testament to that. A riot of clashing colours, fun prints and quirky collections, it’s very much a reflection of Andrea’s personality. “The same principles that I use for getting dressed are scattered throughout the house,” she says. “Polka dots, stripes, metallics, and floral and tropical prints. My style has always been ‘more is more’ and that is totally true for this house.”
She rents the property from two friends who live abroad, and counts herself lucky that they left behind some great pieces, meaning that she didn’t have to “contend with mismatched pine furniture”, the bane of many renters’ lives. With key furniture taken care of, Andrea got to work putting her own stamp on the place. “I love bright, garish colours and patterns so that’s where the house became my home.”
Her top tip for renters is not to fear colour. “Most rentals are neutral when you move into them. Go wild with colour, as it’s easy to change it back. I painted the step pink when I moved in and everyone thought I was mad, but it looks lovely now and not as weird as people expected.”
House of Hackney Palmeral wallpaper, bright pink stairs, an aquamarine kitchen, and a polka dot-covered bedroom are just the tip of the iceberg. Each room is a reflection not only of Andrea’s personality, but of her favourite places and memories. “You use life experiences to create the home you live in,” she asserts. “For the bedroom, I wanted to be reminded of Italy all the time, but as an avid clutterer and collector, I made a conscious decision that the bedroom would be relatively plain and calm.” She used the blue stripes often found on sun loungers or at beach clubs around the Italian countryside to make the cushions, before tackling the walls. “I wanted to keep them neutral but being allergic to neutral, I decided to use a neutral colour to create a polka dot design on the wall. My sister loved painting all those circles!” she adds mischievously.