23 December 2014

Merry Christmas

As 2014 draws to a close I've been reflecting on another tremendous year. I've visited the USA, the Netherlands, Denmark, Australia, New Zealand, France, Ireland, and South Africa and have met so many wonderful people along the way. The Annie Sloan family has grown to include over 1,200 Stockists around the world, with new countries coming on board such as the UAE, Oman, Singapore, Estonia, Serbia, Slovakia and the Czech Republic.

I've written and published my latest book, Room Recipes for Style and Colour, I've launched the Annie Sloan Fragrance Collection, extended the Annie Sloan Brush range, introduced two new colours to the Chalk Paint® palette and just recently brought out new mini waxes. We also organised our very first late-night shopping event on 21st November with a huge number of Stockists taking part from across the globe, raising significant funds for local charities close to our hearts.

I'd like to wish you all a very happy Christmas and a healthy and prosperous 2015!

Yours, Annie

18 December 2014

Janice Issitt's Vintage Floral Bedroom

After treating herself to this vibrant floral bed linen, Painter in Residence Janice Issitt decided to create a colour scheme to complement her new bedding.

The striking cupboard that sits next to her bed has been painted in a number of colours from the Chalk Paint® palette. The hot pink/red colour is a mix of Emperor's Silk and Henrietta, and was left over from another project that Janice worked on. She used Country Grey and Old White to provide a neutral background to frame the rest of the cupboard.

Janice cut her own stencils to give the cupboard character and a vintage feel. She painted the stencils in Aubusson Blue, Antibes Green, Florence and Greek Blue, picking out colours on her bedspread. She then finished the cupboard with Clear Soft Wax to protect the surface.

Janice also painted the mirror that sits on top of the cupboard in Paloma, a contemporary neutral with a purple tone. She used a combination of Clear and Dark Soft Wax to give it an aged appearance – the perfect complement to the vintage floral style of the room.  

What do you think of the finished look? Have you ever created a vintage floral colour scheme using Chalk Paint®?

Yours, Annie

Follow this blog for exclusive pics from Janice's residency and follow her on InstagramFacebook, and her blog: janiceissittlifestyle.blogspot.com

And remember to follow #PaintersInResidence on Instagram and Facebook, as well as my Painters in Residence board on Pinterest.

12 December 2014

Colour of the year?

Pantone recently announced that ‘Marsala’ was its ‘Colour of the Year’ – an interesting gambit on many levels, I thought. And certainly it’s caused quite a media stir and has been commented upon up by several Annie Sloan Stockists, too.

The graphic designer’s friend
What’s it all about? Back in my college days studying Art, I never really came into contact with Pantone colours – it was much more a graphic design thingy and designers talked about it all the time as it was a way of specifying and matching colour. It was explained to me by a graphic designer as a means to clarify conversations such as “I would like it in red”, “What shade of red?”, “Somewhere between tomato and pillar box”. Pantone gets its precisely. Hence it’s not just Marsala but Marsala 18-1438.

Pantone say it's ‘a naturally robust and earthy wine red’ and I quite like it personally. In fact, Marsala reminds me of a blend of three of my colours: Burgundy and Primer Red, with a dash of Old White Chalk Paint®.

Kicking off the colour conversation
And ‘Colour of the Year’? Pantone have been promoting a centrefold colour since 2000, I believe, and I think it’s a really interesting idea. If it raises the profile of colour in our lives that can only be a good thing. It makes people focus on colour and that’s exciting – we all need it. 

Having said that, I don’t think we should take it too seriously. It’s for colour forecasters  especially in fashion (clothes and handbags), beauty (we’ll see it in lipsticks) and it kicks off a conversation in interiors, furnishings, design, and graphics, which is all good stuff. It’s all about the zeitgeist and the ‘Colour of the Year’ reflects that – perhaps Marsala is about the need to be more ‘grounded’ in what to many seems a time of freefall?

One colour fits all?
I have to say that the idea of trying to make one colour the colour for the whole world in all these areas seems a wee bit ambitious, and anyway your shop or style simply might not be able to include this or any ‘Colour of the Year’. What happens if you live by the sea and you’ve chosen lots of greys? I say, don’t feel obliged to up paintbrushes and start spreading the Marsala.

Yours, Annie

3 December 2014

Alex Russell Flint's Japanese Mural

Painter in Residence, Alex Russell Flint, is a realist oil painter known for his paintings of the female form. It's a real pleasure to see him experiment with Chalk Paint® to reproduce this stunning Japanese mural on his bedroom wall.

Alex took a classic Hiroshige print, Netting Wild Geese on the Hill at Okoshi, as inspiration for this stunning mural. An original woodblock print of the image hangs above his bed on the adjoining wall.

He painted the mural with a range of colours from the Chalk Paint® palette, some straight out of the tin and some mixed together. I love the way he used my paint like an artist's paint, mixing the colours together as he went.

In the rest of the bedroom, Alex echoed colours from the mural to create a cohesive look. He diluted Chalk Paint® in Aubusson Blue to make a wash for the remaining bedroom walls. For the floors, he created a wash with Old White. He painted the chest of drawers next to the bed in Coco and finished them with my Clear Soft Wax.

What do you think? Have you ever used Chalk Paint® to create a mural?

Keep your eyes peeled for the next project from Alex, as I show you the rest of this room.

Yours, Annie

Follow this blog for exclusive pics from Alex's residency and follow him on InstagramFacebook, and his website:http://www.alexrussellflint.com

And remember to follow #PaintersInResidence on Instagram and Facebook, as well as my Painters in Residence board on Pinterest.

28 November 2014

Bonjour Burgundy!


In between everything else that’s been happening just now – Ireland tour, South Africa tour, #AnnieSloanLate, not mention the Painters in Residence which I’ve been showcasing on the blog too – I could do with a large red. Well, I’ve got one!

Please say “santé” to my colour, Burgundy. For those who haven’t seen it before, it’s a very rich red – think cranberries and plums – and conjures up classic Victorian interiors and boho boudoirs. But it can also be quite lively: with some help from Old White it morphs into a delicious, raspberry-like pink to add something of an ‘oomph’ to a room.

I’m getting madder
My inspirations include the pigment called Alizarin Crimson,
 a synthetic product made by a man called William Perkin. He was an English dye chemist and he derived it from coal tar. But he was also pipped at the post by one day in filing his patent (which went to two German chemists, Karls Grabe and Lieberman… would you believe?)

The Liebermans were searching for a synthetic way to create the strong red pigment with a bluish tone that comes naturally from the dye derived from Madder plant roots. Madder was found in Tutankhamen’s tomb amongst other places, and is a dye often seen in Asia and hence in Turkish carpets. So Burgundy is ideal for creating that exotic Turkish boudoir feel.

Another source of inspiration for Burgundy is the purplish blue-red that became available in the 1860. The English called it 'magenta', after the Battle of Magenta in 1859, a narrow French victory over Austria in the struggle for Italian independence – which is a fascinating fact in itself.

I was drawn to the name and colour because of its classical French Napoleonic connections and I love Burgundy as representing that refined French claret-colour which I suggest you could put on, say, a fabulous chest of drawers, maybe on its own, or with a little clear wax or even some dark wax. It adds a glorious gravitas and also looks great with gold leaf. As a regal colour Burgundy also pairs extremely well with Château Grey.

Bubblegum pink

As a bluey- not orangey-red, you might not associate Burgundy as a ‘fun’ colour, but wait till you try adding Old White to it: then it becomes right up-to-date bright bubblegum pink. Already a lot of people are adding white to it and making  these extraordinarily vivacious pinks, just like Lady Penelope and Thunderbirds.

A tripartite colour combination of Burgundy, Provence and Arles (all complementary on the colour wheel) makes an amazing mix for a room. For example you might like to try an Arles-painted wall combined with a Burgundy piece, say a chest of drawers, with some added Provence in the room in some other way, perhaps inside the drawers?

Yours, Annie

26 November 2014


On Friday 21st November, Annie Sloan Stockists around the world opened their doors after hours to host special late-night shopping events and promotions for one night only, as part of the global event, #AnnieSloanLate!

#AnnieSloanLate was a night to celebrate and support local businesses. Communities worked together and got together to run demos, hold brocantes and auctions, serve hot food, drink mulled wine and to raise money for charity.

In the UK we raised money for the NSPCC, in Ireland it was for The Jack and Jill Children's Foundation, in the Netherlands we supported Het Vergeten Kind, in South Africa our chosen charity was Hearts of Hope, in Australia it was TLC for Kids, and in Sweden we worked with En Annan Sida Av Sverige. And there were even more local charities that we worked with in different countries across the globe.

Search the hashtag #AnnieSloanLate on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to see photographs from the events. If you couldn't make it to the event, but would like to make a donation then please visit the Just Giving page, set-up by Sofka who runs my shop in Oxford.

Thank you to everybody who took part and made this event such a success!

Yours, Annie

19 November 2014

Beau Ford's Work Hard, Be Kind Desk

For her third Painters in Residence project, Beau Ford gave this sad and forgotten school desk a complete make-over using my paint, Chalk Paint®.

After replacing the top and giving the whole desk a quick clean, Beau set to work on the paintwork. First, she painted the base of the desk in English Yellow, then applying Paris Grey as an accent on the feet.

She painted the top of the table in a chevron pattern, using a ruler as a rough guide. She worked with a range of colours to make a bright statement: Barcelona Orange, Scandinavian Pink, English Yellow, Provence, Greek Blue and Napoleonic Blue.
When you lift the lid of the desk you find a charming surprise – the words "Work Hard, Be Kind written in lovely, freehand type.

Beau used Clear Wax and Dark Wax to finish the piece and give the overall piece an aged look.

What do you think? Have you used Chalk Paint® to create a bright and bold pattern on your furniture?

Yours, Annie

Follow this blog for exclusive pics from Beau's residency and follow her on InstagramFacebook, and her blog: http://drip-designsfurniture.blogspot.com.au

And remember to follow #PaintersInResidence on Instagram and Facebook, as well as my Painters in Residence board on Pinterest.

13 November 2014

Janice Issitt's Boho Door

Janice found this dark wooden, carved, Victorian door in a charity shop and had to have it! She has taken the door and repurposed it using lots of bright colours from the Chalk Paint® palette to make a bold Bohemian statement.

Janice told me that "a lot of things went in to the alchemy" when it came to mixing the colours for this piece. She loves to experiment with colour mixing and stores any left-over mixes in pots, and will revisit these when beginning a project – adding other colours in to them to make the right tone for the next project.

For this piece Florence and Antibes have been mixed in different amounts to create different tones of green. Old White has been added to some parts and English Yellow to others. Napoleonic Blue and Emperor's Silk were mixed to make the deep purple panels, and a touch of Emperor's Silk has been added to Barcelona Orange to deepen it.

The panelled wall surrounding the door has been painted in Napoleonic Blue and stencils have been added in its complimentary colour, Barcelona Orange!

What do you think? Have you ever used Chalk Paint® to create a Bohemian look?

Yours, Annie

Follow this blog for exclusive pics from Janice's residency and follow her on InstagramFacebook, and her blog: janiceissittlifestyle.blogspot.com

And remember to follow #PaintersInResidence on Instagram and Facebook, as well as my Painters in Residence board on Pinterest.

11 November 2014

Room Recipes Blog Tour

Follow the Room Recipes blog tour!

on (or after) the dates above to read their reviews of my new book, Room Recipes for Style and Colour, co-written with my son Felix Sloan.

Each blog has a copy of the book to give-away too, so be sure to visit them
to be in with the chance of winning.

4 November 2014

Alex Russell Flint's Rustic Entrance Hall

For his second project, Painter in Residence Alex Russell Flint updated his entrance hall using my paint, Chalk Paint®, to transform the furniture, floors and walls in a rustic French style.

Alex scored diamond shapes on to the concrete floor and painted them in Graphite and Original to make them look like black and white tiles. Original is a warm off-white which works beautifully with the purple tones in Old Violet – the colour that Alex has diluted and used on the lime plaster wall. 

He painted the shoe rack in Old White, an off-white with a cooler tone, and finished with a coat of wax to protect the surface.

How have you used Chalk Paint® to revamp your entrance hall?

Yours, Annie

Follow this blog for exclusive pics from Alex's residency and follow him on InstagramFacebook, and his website:http://www.alexrussellflint.com

And remember to follow #PaintersInResidence on Instagram and Facebook, as well as my Painters in Residence board on Pinterest.

30 October 2014

Introducing my latest book

I’m thrilled to announce that my new book, Annie Sloan's Room Recipes for Style and Colour, is officially launched next week…

With 300 inspirational photographs, I really hope you'll enjoy tucking into its 192 pages. The book examines several key interior design styles and features stunning photography from Christopher Drake (who I've had the honour of working with on all my most recent books!). 

Christopher Drake on our shoot for the Neoclassical chapter

My publishers (CICO Books) have done a cracking job in the production and printing and it looks good enough to eat (well, it is called ‘Recipes’). Seriously, it’s probably the book that comes closest to epitomising what I have been about for over 30 years and I feel tremendously proud of the finished result.

Felix Sloan, my son & co-author

That pride also comes about because this is the first book my son, Felix, and I have written together. As a graphic designer and skilled painter, Felix has been instrumental in helping me put together my last 4 books, assisting on photoshoots and helping me with painting behind the scenes. 

He was especially hands-on in the design of the Annie Sloan Work Book. Now my middle son has turned his talents to co-writing and I think the results speak volumes.

Sources of inspiration

It’s been something of a journey of discovery* for Felix and I, not just in putting the book together but in sourcing the 9 styles featured in the book. Along the way, we met a group of very generous and supportive homeowners who opened their doors to reveal some stunning room recipes. A big thank you to furniture designer Tim Gosling for his refined Neoclassical apartment, to the caretakers at Stola Herrgård, the epitome of Traditional Swedish, designer Virginia Armstrong and her ever-so-stylish Modern Retro London home, interior painter and photographer Janice Issitt and her so Boho Bucks Cottage, vintage fair collector Madeline Tomlinson and her rose-revived Vintage Floral cottage, oil painter Alex Rusell Flint and his très chic French Elegance schoolhouse, antique collectors and dealers Rob and Jane Slater for their truly Rustic Country abode in the Peak District, photographer Paul Massey and his wife Jules and their Coastal Cornish cottage, and Emily Gray and her fab Amsterdam Warehouse apartment. 

More than a coffee table book

And as a special treat, Felix and I filmed this short video to introduce the book to you all. You might recognise the backdrop from the cover of the book. Enjoy!

Yours, Annie

PS * One among many interesting discoveries in the book: The attic featured in Vintage Floral was once the studio of distinctive English landscape and portrait artist Graham Sutherland.

20 October 2014

Beau Ford's Spotted Wardrobe

For Beau's second project as Painter in Residence she took a characterless old wooden wardrobe and transformed it in to a fun, colourful statement piece, using my paint. Chalk Paint® is the perfect way to add colour to a child's bedroom (or an adult's!)

The outside of the wardrobe has been painted in a simple mix of Barcelona Orange and Pure, creating a peachy-orange colour. I love the way Beau picked its complimentary colour, Provence, to paint the inside of the wardrobe. She stamped the white spots on to the surface, starting at the bottom of the wardrobe and radiating out towards the top. She then finished the project with Annie Sloan Clear Soft Wax to protect the surface.

You can easily replicate this finish at home by making your own stamps. And you don't need any high tech equipment – it's easy to make your own stamps out of potatoes, cardboard or wine corks.

Have you ever attempted a similar finish with Chalk Paint®?

Yours, Annie

Remember to follow #PaintersInResidence on Instagram and Facebook, as well as my Painters in Residence board on Pinterest.

14 October 2014

Janice Issitt's Art Deco Room

Janice was commissioned by one of her Rock 'n' Roll clients to transform this room. With a palette of Graphite, Florence and gold, she went for a bold art deco look.

Janice started by painting the wall with Chalk Paint® in the colour Graphite. She then applied an art-deco-inspired stencil – painting it in Florence and then picking out parts to highlight with brass leaf (she adhered the leaf with Annie Sloan Gold Size). She then used my Dark Soft Wax to darken the whole wall.

She painted the chair in Graphite, highlighting the carvings on the legs with brass leaf. For the cabinet, Janice chose the same palette of Florence, Graphite, and gold. She even painted the candles in Florence!

It doesn't cost a lot to achieve a bold look like this. Janice sourced the cupboard and chair for just £11 on eBay!

What do you think of her Rock 'n' Roll Art Deco look?

7 October 2014

Janice Issitt's Chinese Inspired Wall Art

The second project from Painter in Residence, Janice Issitt, is this Chinese-inspired wall art, painted in my paint, Chalk Paint®.

This is actually one of the last projects that Janice completed during her time as a Painter in Residence. Janice had lots of leftover paint that she had mixed up for previous projects and decided to "chuck it at the walls". Here you can see Provence, Greek Blue, and Old White – all thrown at the walls and rolled out wet.

Janice tells me that she likes something handmade to look hand made, and that she doesn't like perfection. Therefore, why should a wall look completely flat and even? Something I totally agree with!

The stencilled images are of Chinese cherry blossoms, flowers and birds. The branches and flowers are painted in Old White, Primer Red, Barcelona Orange and Emperor's Silk. The leaves are Antibes, and the birds are Napoleonic Blue.

Janice has loved stencilling ever since the days of Jocasta Innes. Every time she has a new job she thinks about how she can incorporate a stencil.

To finish this project, Janice rescued an old side table painting it in Emperor's Silk to echo the Chinese look of the stencilled wall.

The inside of the cupboard is painted in Florence and the edge has been gilded using Annie Sloan Gold Size and Brass Leaf. The whole cupboard has been finished with Annie Sloan Soft Clear Wax.

So what do you think? Have you stencilled with Chalk Paint® before?

Yours, Annie

Follow this blog for exclusive pics from Janice's residency and follow her on InstagramFacebook, and her blog:janiceissittlifestyle.blogspot.com

And remember to follow #PaintersInResidence on Instagram and Facebook, as well as my Painters in Residence board on Pinterest.

3 October 2014

Alex Russell Flint's Painterly Bathroom

The first project from Painter in Residence, Alex Russell Flint, is this gorgeous bathroom painted in my paint, Chalk Paint®.

Alex has updated his 19th century zinc bath tub using a mixture of Aubusson Blue, Antibes Green and Burgundy. He then finished the bath tub with Annie Sloan Clear Wax and a coat of Annie Sloan Dark Wax to deepen the intensity of the colour.

The lampshade in the room has also been painted with very diluted Chalk Paint® in Burgundy; the side table has been painted in Primer Red and then finished with Clear Wax. I feel the colours used really tie the gorgeous rich textures and tones of the room together. Alex's walls really set off the luscious reds in the room – to achieve a look like this you can use Duck Egg Blue and Clear Wax.

Have you used Chalk Paint® on a bath tub?

Yours, Annie

Follow this blog for exclusive pics from Alex's residency and follow him on InstagramFacebook, and his website:http://www.alexrussellflint.com

And remember to follow #PaintersInResidence on Instagram and Facebook, as well as my Painters in Residence board on Pinterest.

29 September 2014

Introducing Painter in Residence Alex Russell Flint

“Hi I’m Alex Russell Flint and I call myself a contemporary realist painter in oils and I came here to west central France when I was 20 to study with an American artist who has his studio nearby and that’s how I ended up here. I live in a former school house in Argenton-Chateau, about 300 km southwest of Paris in the Deux-Sevres (Poitou-Charentes region). It’s a very beautiful village with a river, the Argenton, running through it in a valley. The big old building is perched on a hillside and commands great views and is the first home I’ve ever owned and I’ve fallen in love with interior decoration and Chalk Paint®.

One of Alex's oil paintings - his home and studio provides
 the backdrop to many of his paintings.

And Annie's paint? 

It was the paint I’d been looking for but didn’t know existed. As an artist I was only too aware that when you paint on a specific wall on a building it’s very different to how it looks from a colour chart; but with Chalk Paint® this was never an issue.

It’s just been great being able to slap the paint on stone, wood and metal and create a bespoke finish and colour to fit each room. I love the matte finish on a paint for a wall especially if the walls are quite badly damaged. It’s very forgiving, it doesn’t get highlights on every crack so the very chalky finish is great.

As soon as I met Annie I knew we were on the same page in terms of decorating and trying things out. Annie is passionate about what she does, very down to earth – and as an artist it was nice to ask her how she developed the paint and what inspired her.

What you’ll see from me

My first project is going to be an outdoor bathroom using a 19th century zinc bathtub which I shall make more luxurious adding decking with old oak floorboards and old shutters and create an area overlooking the trees of this valley.

I source all my décor from vide-greniers (boot fairs), brocantes and salons d’antiquaires. I’ve also got some very nice quality curtains but in the wrong colour so I’m going to paint and wax them. That’s just for starters.”

Here’s a sneak peek of projects to come from Alex:

24 September 2014

Beau Ford's Ombre Console Table

The first project from Painter in Residence Beau Ford is this pretty ombre-effect console table painted in my paint, Chalk Paint®.

Beau has transformed an unfashionable and dated, dark wooden console in to a striking and bright modern piece, with an on-trend ombre finish. Beau has layered and mixed my colours Provence and Greek Blue to create an ombre look on the legs of the table. She then dry-brushed Pure on to the bottom of the legs to highlight the shape and carvings.

To add interest to the top of the console, Beau applied a Moroccan-style stencil with the same three Chalk Paint® colours. She then finished with a layer of Annie Sloan Clear Wax followed by a heavy amount of Annie Sloan Dark Wax to give an aged finish. She distressed the piece with sandpaper, before applying one final coat Annie Sloan Clear Wax to add a subtle sheen and protection.

What do you think? Have you ever tried creating an ombre effect using Chalk Paint®?

Yours, Annie

Follow this blog for exclusive pics from Beau's residency and follow her on Instagram, Facebook, and her blog: http://drip-designsfurniture.blogspot.com.au

And remember to follow #PaintersInResidence on Instagram and Facebook, as well as my Painters in Residence board on Pinterest.