Sonia grew up in Bristol and moved to London age 19 to study Fashion Design at Middlesex University. She had her own boutique, Woburn Silks, in Bloomsbury for 10 years, designing and making bespoke wedding dresses and evening gowns. In 1996, she moved to Saffron Walden to start a family, and after the birth of her third child Teddy in 2001, she began building her painting career. Her main inspiration came after seeing the work of Michalopoulos in New Orleans. 

Sonia paints iconic scenes of Cambridgeshire and Essex in a new field of vision using acrylic, oil, watercolour and collage - cosy chaos - fluid and funky - colourful and cranky - warm and wonky.

In 2019 Sonia won the Mayor’s Choice Award at the inaugural Invitational Cambridge Art Awards. She has been exhibiting with Cambridge Open Studios for the past 20 years and Cambridge Drawing Society for 14 years, also working as a committee member for both. She was Chair of Cambridge Open Studios in 2021/22. Her work can be viewed in over 25 galleries and shops including Primavera, The Museum of Cambridge, Church Street Gallery, Saffron Walden Tourist Information Centre, Nantais Gallery in Linton and The Old School Gallery, Whittlesford.

Sonia offers art classes at her home in Hadstock for adults in term time, children’s after-school and summer holidays, and leads regular demonstrations and workshops for local art societies.

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Sonia Villiers sits down with JLeone in July 2020 to discuss her lifelong practice and how lockdown affected her

Interview with Galleria Moderna