The Nap Dress Designer Personalizes Her Pillowcases With This Sweet Twist on a Monogram

Hill House Home’s Nell Diamond joins us on “Design Time.”
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Nell Diamond sitting on a sofa in a blue dress

Hill House Home’s Nap Dress, a garment so easy to wear that you could (and should!) sleep in it, is so ubiquitous that sometimes it’s easy to forget that Nell Diamond launched the company as a bedding brand in 2016.

Since then, she as taken her romantic, hyper-feminine aesthetic and built it into an entire world: Towels, shoes, robes, hair accessories, and—yes—more bedding are now part of the Hill House Home catalog. And the average Nap Dress collector (the brand’s term for its customers) owns at least 11 or 12 of the frilly frocks. 

“Aesthetic pursuits are very personal, and design that makes you happy is such an incredible, amazing thing,” Diamond tells Domino deputy editor Julie Vadnal in the latest episode of Design Time: The Rebellious Ones (out today on Spotify and Apple Podcasts). “For me, the Colefax and Fowler, like old-school British Victorian botanicals, are the height of joy. They make me so happy. I love pastels; I love embellishments, sparkles, glitter, all that stuff.”

But don’t mistake her romantic pursuits as soft. “It’s been really fun and in many ways subversive to just let my actions speak for themselves and let my design preferences and aesthetic speak for itself,” she says. “And if somebody else is surprised that those two things fit together, that says a lot more about them and their life than it says about mine.”

In the episode, Diamond shares why she felt like an outsider while growing up, the secret behind the brand’s duvets, and why feminism and frills can coexisit. But first, she plays our game of Never Have I Ever. 

Never have I ever…hung my own wallpaper.

False. I have hung my own wallpaper. It was uneven. It was peel-and-stick, and I had to unpeel it because it was so uneven, and then I just left the walls empty. 

Never have I ever…shopped at HomeGoods. 

False. I love HomeGoods. Love. I lived abroad until college, and everyAmerican store was iconic to me. I thought they were all amazing.

Never have I ever…arranged my books by color.

I’ve never done that. Never. I’m not opposed, but because I’m such a reader, I do them by mood or shape. Shape a lot, because I do a lot of book stacks. So I have them in piles of when I’ve read them, basically, so there will be a couple months of reading in one pile, and they’ll be from biggest to smallest, and then genres. Less color, and more genre or shape.

Never have I ever…cried while building IKEA furniture.

Oh, definitely. I’ve even cried while building Container Store stuff, which is objectively easy. It’s not hard at all. You just put a drawer in another plastic thing.

Never have I ever…bought a piece of decor or pillow with a phrase on it.

Okay, so I didn’t know this was controversial, because I definitely have done this. I do phrases of my own. We monogram pillows, and our mini pillowcases were one of our most popular items for two years. They’re a boudoir sham. I would always monogram a location or a zip code or a special phrase that’s important to a couple or something like that on those pillows.

Julie Vadnal Avatar

Julie Vadnal

Deputy Editor

Julie Vadnal is the deputy editor of Domino. She edits and writes stories about shopping for new and vintage furniture, covers new products (and the tastemakers who love them), and tours the homes of cool creatives. She lives in Brooklyn.