Places

Deerfield Handicraft Shop

Luanna Thorn: Woven Fabrics & Baskets

Deerfield Handicraft Shop

© Memorial Hall Museum, Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association

The Thorn House, by Frances and Mary Allen, 1901.

For over thirty years, tourists could find Luanna Thorn's hand-woven textiles for sale at her home located on the Street in old Deerfield. By 1920, a sign inviting customers to the Deerfield Handicraft Shop hung from the back of the Thorn family's house, built 1747/48. It was here that weaver Luanna Thorn not only sold but also designed and created a variety of handmade domestic items such as rugs, dresser scarves, wall hangings, table covers, belts, coverlets, handbags, and curtains. Her husband, Dr. Edwin Thorn was also a Deerfield Arts and Crafts artisan, known for Colonial Revival furniture inspired by the early pieces he studied in Deerfield's museum, Memorial Hall.

Luanna and Edwin Thorn first exhibited their weavings and furniture in the Crafts Barn and in the Village Room, early Deerfield Industries summer exhibition spaces. In 1906, they displayed their work in the Deerfield Society of Blue and White Needlework salesroom located at the home of their neighbors, Ellen and Margaret Miller. By 1910, however, Luanna exhibited her woven fabrics and rugs in the north parlor of her own 1747 home, now owned by Historic Deerfield, Inc. Following Dr. Thorn's death in 1920, Luanna added antiques, and family-made reed and willow baskets to her sales inventory.