The inspiration behind starting ANNA comes from a variety of places in my past. As a child, while I was living in suburban Detroit, my father and I would go to rock shows (no, not the heavy metal kind) on the weekends. They were these huge mineral conventions where I would search for stones that I liked—selenite, amethyst, and agate were some of my childhood favorites. Eventually, I collected a beautiful treasure trove of stones.
Later in life, I rediscovered agate while vacationing in Yosemite. An elegant agate stone caught my eye in the gift shop, and there was something about it which felt very familiar. When I went back home, I dug up my old collection. I laid it all out on my desk, admiring the natural beauty and connecting with my past. Then one day I thought, these would make great coasters. Agate rock is formed inside ancient lava streams, which gives it a feeling of deep history and meaning. The fact that I had such a visceral childhood memory associated with it made it all the more impactful.