Anna Maria Horner is not only the mother of six children, ages 2-19, she is an artist on many levels. After receiving a degree in fine arts and drawing with honors from the University of Tennessee, Anna Maria designed a line of clothing, exhibited her paintings regularly in galleries and wrote two books based on her love of sewing. That’s just for starters. Now, she creates her own fabric line, and she is the newest face of the sewing machine company, Janome. Her blog, annamariahorner.blogspot.com, is an amazing place to go and be inspired, filled with color and happiness. We are thrilled to feature Anna Maria today on StyleBlueprint as our FACE of Nashville.
Where did you grow up?
I was born in Chicago, but mostly raised just east of here in Knoxville.
When and why did you move to Nashville?
My husband was born and raised here. We met in college, got married, started our family (sort of in that order), and then eventually came this way when I was pregnant with our third. We moved for Jeff’s work, and we’ve been here for 12 years now.
What is the greatest piece of advice you have been given?
“There is no perfection, only the perfect struggle.”
What is the greatest joy in having 6 kids with a 17 year spread?
Seeing them together, all at once, with every bit of chaos that it comes with -laughter, yelling, dorkiness, rough-housing, taking care of one another, whatever the case may be. Just them being wholly and uniquely themselves in the company of one another…and completely ours.
Your patterns are all so happy and fun. But, your business is serious. Is it hard to blend those two worlds together?
I am actually fortunate to have both. I don’t know how I would survive the business side of my work if I didn’t get to have the release of creativity and the joy of making that comes with it. It’s not that business is all grueling, but I have a hard time sitting still. I’d rather be up and around, doing something with my hands, and my whole self. The keyboard and I are a little better acquainted than I would like for us to be. But lets face it, there are times when the ideas are either not quite ready to be translated, or my artistic side is a little overwhelmed, so I am glad for some of the cut-and-dried type of tasks. I love planning what’s next.
What books can be found on your bedside table?
- Holy Women of Russia by Brenda Meehan-Waters
- Color by Victoria Findlay
- I also just finished Half Broke Horses by Jeannette Walls
Favorite thing to do on a Saturday night?
Watch movies, usually foreign, documentary or indie, with my husband on the couch. I like beer and candy, too.
Event most looking forward to attending this fall?
Oh, what’s going on this fall? (I don’t get out much!)
What is your “must-have” purchase for fall 2011?
I want the crocheted skirt by the collaboration of Christopher Kane and Johnstons of Elgin, though I think it will most likely just inspire me to make one…which means I’ll be making a yarn purchase at Textile Fabrics soon.
Where is your favorite place to eat in Nashville?
We love Mafiaoza’s on 12th. Its fun & delicious with any number of our children in tow, or when Jeff and I get to have a date night.
Favorite vacation spot?
We’ve been going to North Litchfield Beach in South Carolina for years with my whole extended family, but we are starting to trade that out for fall or winter vacations in NYC with the whole family. I think lots of people are intimidated to make NYC a family trip, but it has become a favorite for us, and I love the folksy feel of many spots in Brooklyn, Soho, and Williamsburg. And, you really cannot beat Central Park & the Museum of Natural History!
Favorite meal to cook for your family?
I love making roasted Greek-style pork loin, tiropitas (feta + filo triangles), salad, and lemon meringue pie.
Do you have a favorite workout?
I try to run a few miles 3 or 4 times every week, but I got the best workout of my life this summer in my yard. For about 6 weeks straight, I was preparing about 1500 square feet of new garden beds, which required lots of digging, moving and spreading load after load of soil and mulch, often in heavy heat for hours at a time. My arms and legs got so toned!
Name three things you can’t live without (excluding friends, family and God)
Fried Eggs. Coffee. Baths.
For more pictures, see photographer Ashley’s Hylbert’s blog each week for a behind the scenes of FACES: click here.