Kathy Barlow is a designer of handcrafted home decor textiles, which she designs from her website Home Workshop, based in California. Kathy creates thoughtfully conceived motifs, designed with an abundance of colour to complement distinctive designs. She is heavily inspired by architecture, nature and photography - which she uses to shape her designs. Initially she was just a design blogger but eventually “she jumped into the story”, and started to design her own textile products. So we are proud to bring you the Designer Insights of Kathy Barlow.
Image Credit: 1) Nancy Manning 2) NW Rugs & Furniture 3) Tiny Lions Designs 4) Kathy Barlow Home Workshop 5) Nathan Anthony Furniture
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1) In your own words describe your unique style and creative aesthetic?
My textiles and pillows are colorful, graphic, textural and luxurious. For design-savvy people who want an uncommon look. Upscale handcrafted-elegant but where the hand of the maker is evident.
2) When starting a new project, what is your creative process?
I get out and photograph architecture. Snippets of cities, small towns or historic structures. I glean interesting elements that I sketch, tweak and develop into beautiful patterns and pillow motifs.
3) Out of the creative people you have worked with, who is it that you respect and admire the most?
I absolutely adored working on several projects with Kenneth Brown, renowned Los Angeles & New Orleans interior designer, and former HGTV host. I delight in upbeat people who are passionate about their work, and Kenneth fits that bill. He happily shares his vast design knowledge, while not being afraid to goof around. It was a hoot to shoot our Rose Bowl Flea Market video together!
4) When looking for inspiration is there a particular thing you do to get inspired?
I’m inspired by the built world and by nature. I love hiking Bay Area hills and Lake Tahoe forests, with my camera. Nature walks often clarify design and life issues.
5) What has brought you to this point in your career? And what is your advice for people looking to follow in your footsteps?
Passion, perseverance, keeping my eyes open and diving in and making things. My advice? Keep learning—new artisan techniques, new business skills and technologies, and meet as many like-minded people as you can. Keep a notepad and a sketchbook handy. Believe in yourself, trust your unique creative voice and have fun!