Blank Canvas was started by indie designer Anna McCraney, and born out of necessity. Anna knew that if it was going to be done right and on a budget, she was going to have to do it herself. A native of Atlanta and graduate of The Rhode Island School of Design, Anna honed and perfected her development skills making patterns for her own line, Annabelle, working as a head designer for companies like Dolce Vita and Amanda Uprichard, and teaching Fashion Design and Merchandising at a small design college in midtown Manhattan, Wood Tobe Coburn. In 2009 she took at a stab at reality tv competition and won Bravo’s first season of “The Fashion Show”, hosted by Isaac Mizrahi, Kelly Rowland, and Fern Mallis, allowing her to open her own store, Annabelle, on Manhattan’s Lower East Side.
Blank Canvas was born in 2013, when Anna decided to pivot her business and apply all the skills she had picked up along the way to assist other young start ups and new designers. Her positive attitude, guidance, and industry experience allowed her to build up loyal business to business relationships, encourage sustainability, and promote American manufacturing. In her product development services, she offers her clients 20 years of industry experience, a designer's perspective, practical advice, a common sense approach, and patient education in an overwhelming and dog eat dog industry. Her long relationships with her factories allow her to negotiate fair prices for her clients, and her clients can rest assured that the details of both development and production will be managed appropriately, with great quality control, and fast turnarounds.
Today, the Blank Canvas production office is in Brooklyn, New York, allowing staff quick and easy access to New York's best sewing rooms, factories, and fabric sourcing, and allowing clients to communicate and execute their ideas remotely. As of 2018, Blank Canvas has opened a second office in Savannah, Georgia, which serves as the basecamp for the pattern making and development end of the business. By actively employing and training graduates of the Savannah College of Art and Design in the art of pattern making and the inner workings of an industry that is largely closed off to beginners, Blank Canvas is contributing to a renaissance for production and manufacturing in the United States, making the industry more aware of its impact on our environment and economy.
Most of all, Anna has not forgotten her roots, both as a native Southerner, and a scrappy Brooklyn art school transplant trying to make ends meet. Anna finds beauty in all perspectives, and works to translate the color, culture, narrative and nuance her clients are trying to achieve through education and celebration. Blank Canvas works with all of its clients, big and small, to execute their dreams. It offers the skill set, connections, transparency, practicality, attention, and kindness that help nurture successful entrepreneurs.