Holly Dawn Dychangco’s brand of design has soul and purpose
By Deneb Batucan
THERE’S a warmth and positivity around Holly Dawn Dychangco that draws people to her. Her vibrant spirit attracts so many beautiful things, and as an interior designer, this seems to happen quite a lot.
Holly designs spaces for a living. She went to school at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco and came back to her hometown about five years ago and started Chrome Design Studio.
She started the design firm because she saw it as a great opportunity that time as condominiums started dominating the Cebu skyline. “Everything was really new to me because I studied the metric system and everything was really different. It was a big adjustment,” she said. “But now it’s been five years and we’ve expanded. Now I mainly manage the team since we now have a bigger team.”
Then a year ago, due to client demand, she started her home furnishings line, Hollidawn Home + Design. Holly says that she really started her home line for herself. “There were clients who asked me to customize some pieces, and at the same time it was really hard for me to buy pieces that I liked and that was kind of me,” she said. “I just wanted to show what I liked, such as blacks and neutrals.”
Since the initial launch, Holly’s home line has had four collections: Dawn, the Summer Collection, a collaborative collection with Anthill Fabric Gallery and, her latest, the Onyx.
For Holly, the Onyx collection is special for more a number of reasons. As she panicked to make a new collection, she looked at her beloved French bulldog, Onyx. The dog had quite a year since she was diagnosed with a critical disease that almost took her life. But she fought against it and survived, albeit with battle scars. Onyx may now be blind in one eye, but it never stopped her from being the carefree dog that she continues to be.
Holly got her inspiration from Onyx for her latest collection. Her geometrical and abstract designs that are sleek yet feminine with pink and black tones and gold accents makes for an Instagram-worthy space.
But what makes Holly’s collection even more special is that buyers can actually give back. While making their homes more beautiful through Holly’s home line, they are also helping give young girls a warm and comfortable home.
All proceeds from the Onyx collection goes to the My Bonita Home for Girls, a residential center catering to abused, abandoned, neglected young girls managed by the Franciscan Sisters of the Sacred Heart.
“The pillow collection is really for them. It’s actually called Pillow Fight since these women are fighters. These girls are brave, just like my dog, Onyx,” Holly said with a smile.
When Holly and her sister and two of their friends decided to visit the home, they were astounded by the warmth and gratitude that the children gave them.
Holly, a feminist, believes that women should empower other women, and she does so by empowering so many young girls through her chosen charity. And when they got to talk to the kids, she realized that the inspiration was vice versa.
“I was just so touched because they were girls who had so much ambition. They didn’t let their abuse or their past define them,” she said. “They were so thankful because usually when people go and visit them they just feed them. But when we went, we got to talk to them because that’s what you should do. These children need love and company.”
Holly and some of her friends will be going back to the center by mid-December to give the My Bonita girls their Christmas wishes. “Whatever we can do with the funds we made, we’ll cater to what they need like bookshelves, pillows, and the like,” she said.
Right now, Holly is facilitating the making of the online system for Hollidawn Home + Design. She wants her home line to be available online as preparation for her move to Spain next year where she will be taking up a master’s degree in design management.
Holly is excited for the many beautiful things to come her way. And like that generous soul that she is, she’s ready to shine her light on others.
Photographer: Alfred Gregory E. Bartolome
Make-up Artist: Carlo Damolo
Hair Stylist: Jerwin Bastatas
Locale: Dolce Café