My inspiration as a designer started in my childhood while growing up in Kansas City, Missouri. Regular trips to the Nelson Atkins Museum of Art and summer scholarships to the Kansas City Art Institute influenced my personal and artistic aesthetic. Travels throughout Europe, South America and Israel influenced my love of textiles and color. I taught myself to sew and began making my own clothing while pregnant with my son. Lining a coat felt so challenging that I decided the garment deserved to be reversible and my signature design feature was born. My designs were inspired by traditional, courtly Asian kimono of humble exteriors and secret opulent interiors, reflecting a classic yet thoroughly modern aesthetic. Thus began Stephanie Barnes Studio.
In 2003 I took a three year pause from clothing design and worked with a master electrician, working in construction while training in electrical wiring. In 2007, I returned to design and making, combining the skills learned on construction sites with my love of textiles, sewing, woodworking, and vintage lighting to open Barneche Design, a retail shop on my Catskill Mountain property. Barneche design produced artful, handmade tables, hutches, benches, cabinets, and chairs from reclaimed lumber, along with the Stephanie Barnes line of one-of-a-kind reversible clothing and accessories. Salvaged wood from local barns, remnants of architectural treasures and upcycled textiles were brought together with a philosophy of recycling and making things with a rustic, upscale charm.
In the winter or 2019, I relocated to Northern New Mexico and a new chapter for Stephanie Barnes Studio/Barneche Design began. Just as the air, the light and the wood of the Catskill Mountains inspired my hands, the extraordinary beauty that is Northern New Mexico permeates my senses and infuses a whole new imaginativeness.
With an abiding appreciation for the power of aesthetic to create peace, centeredness, and home, my intention is to surround people with beauty that sustains and supports thereby allowing one to live life by design. I engage my outer and inner eyes in tandem with my experiences with textiles and woodworking to enhance and ensoul bespoke spaces and items for individuals. Be sure to visit my on-line shop at barneche.etsy.com
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