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Celebrating Culture in Design: A Mother's Day Tribute to an Amazing Woman

Some of my fondest memories growing up are of time spent with my grandmother hanging out on her front porch, watching Saturday morning Memphis wrestling, and eating home made banana pudding. Born to Native American (Cherokee) and French parents, she was a strong, independent and loving woman who could tell you stories from 50 years ago with every detail as if they happened yesterday.

When it comes to my own personal design style, I have always found myself drawn to Native American symbols, art and colors (turquoise is my favorite color). The cultural connections to spirituality and nature have helped keep me centered (balance is the color psychology goal for turquoise). Incorporating our culture, momentos and favorite colors is what makes a home so rich with character and uniqueness.

Including these elements, doesn't have to be over the top obvious. My love of turquoise and ethnic, earthy patterns inspired my new Bohemian Chic pillow collection. The Wana pillow's trim, named after my mom and my first name, favors the Native American Medicine Man Wisdom symbol. I love to take these influences and create pieces that feel inspiring.

Whatever your culture is, it is a piece of who you are. So why not embrace it? As I get older, I find myself acknowledging and celebrating my roots more often. My grandmother was always firm about who she was and what she stood for, that is something to respect and honor. Remembering her this Mother's Day is not hard since she died on Mother's Day several years ago, pretty fitting for such a remarkable woman. I smile as I think of her and hope that one day I can come close to making home made banana pudding as good as hers:)!

Artist Jenna Snyder-Phillips

"Chief" by Artist Jenna Snyder-Phillips.

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