A Visit to the Art Studio of Anna Maria Horner

art studio of anna maria horner
Designer Anna Maria Horner's new studio.

cate pratoFabulous fabric designer Anna Maria Horner and I have never been in the same room together, but I have known her for years.

We were first introduced about five years ago when mixed-media artist and author Cheryl Prater sent me a link to Anna's blog with the notation: "She's Greek." 

Cheryl and I are also Greek, and Greeks stick together, so I rushed over to Anna's blog, bookmarked it, and I have never left. Anna has the rare ability to weave her thoughts and photos about her family life, the handmade life, and her new products seamlessly and movingly.

Anna was about to debut her second fabric line when I interviewed her for an artist profile in Cloth Paper Scissors (July/August 2007). That line, Chocolate Lollipop, was an instant success, and each successive suite of fabrics has textile and sewing fanatics clamoring for the new set of lyrical designs in luscious colors.

A mother of six, Anna has worked around her children at home for years and recently built a new studio in the top floor of her house in Tennessee. The Fall 2011 issue of Studios featured the construction phase that resulted in a backdrop of clean lines and a neutral, primarily white palette.

Since then, Anna, her fabrics and fibers, and her family have moved into to the studio. The completed look is revealed in the Winter issue of Studios.

Assistant Editor for Special Projects Lindsey Murray, who works on Studios, interviewed Anna about her new space for the article that accompanies the photos. Here is an excerpt.

Q&A with Anna Maria Horner

art studio anna maria horner
Anna's studio before move-in.

LM: The way you decorated your studio is gorgeous. Was it hard to let go of the pristine whiteness of the area? What made you choose the colors that you did?

AMH: The funny thing is that I don't feel as though I have decorated at all. Simply filling the shelves with materials and supplies did it for me. I kept most of the furnishings neutral, added a few pieces of salvaged wood for ledges and tabletops, and of course layered that with my own prints through pillows and rugs. Those will probably change every time I design a new fabric line. The whole room is sort of like a sketchbook that will get new artwork from time to time. I do have a few special things near my work desk, including an embroidered family portrait that I made in a college textiles class, a miniature quilt piece by my friend Alexia Abegg, and a Byzantine icon that my mother gave me. These small additions make the space feel like home.

Anna Maria
Horner

LM: What is your favorite piece of furniture?

AMH: I love the look of my stainless steel worktable. It's a sleek, modern break from all the painted wood surfaces. i found it through a restaurant supply place, and it's just a standard kitchen worktable with a shelf underneath. While it's not as wide as the counter we use downstairs for cutting, it works perfectly for my personal projects and has a great open shelf underneath for scrap bins.

LM: You said that your kids were always welcome into this space. Do they like spending time there?

art studio of anna maria horner
Anna's fabrics and finished projects.

AMH: They all do a little bit of everything up here; typically, it's hanging out, messing around with a needle and thread, or reading. Since school started they have been doing homework up here in the afternoons. Roman, our youngest, has a shelf or two devoted to some of his favorite toys so he feels just as at home in this room as in any room in the house.

LM: Now that you have settled into your space, are you still happy with all the design decisions that you made?

AMH: Yes, I really, really am. I still come in here most days and pinch myself.

To read the complete interview, see the rest of Anna's studio, and peek into the art studios of more than 20 other artists, be sure to pre-order your copy of Studios, Winter 2011.

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