A HAPPY ISLAND - PALM BEACH


My husband and I just returned from a short little jaunt to Palm Beach to celebrate our first wedding anniversary.  We thoroughly enjoyed the vibe, the food, the eye candy and each other. Here's a few photos of some of the highlights.


the pool courtyard at our hotel, The Chesterfield, a quaint boutique hotel with plenty of charm and a very friendly staff



Dinner at Charley's Crab was good and the view of the Atlantic was even better...



The lush flora on the island is everywhere.....lots of orchids and beautiful potted plants


The shops are one-of-a-kind, this lantern outside a paper shop on Worth Avenue was what caught my eye.
I love Spanish Colonial architecture, pecky cypress (see ceiling above) and any Mizner designed buildings especially.


Couldn't pass up a shot of the Staffordshire collection in Letitia Lundeen Antiques, that has another location in Nantucket as well.


We visited the famous "Church Mouse" thrift store and I scored this amazing deal on a Chinese Chippendale armchair!


I thought these shoes were very reminiscient of a Palm Beach socialite in the 60's. They were huge and left me wondering if they had belonged to a famous style icon we all know had very large feet and spent time there at a family compound??


The homes are very tasteful and many are quite understated as well, not a lot of nouveau-riche flash all over the place, which is refreshing.


I wasn't sure what type of tree this was, but it was pretty nonetheless. The blossoms looked like a cross between mandevilla and petunias.


Another beauty


This was my favorite and also happens to be for sale here


For all of you fiddle leaf fig fans, I found the mother of them here


I am pretty much convinced that Palm Beach Style is kind of up my alley


On Worth Ave.


These beautiful Chinoiserie fretwork details were outside the deli, for crying out loud. Ever seen a deli in a building with such cool classic architecture?


The breakfast was pretty delicious, too. Eggs Benedict with nova. Try it at Toojays.


This cute classic Morris Minor was parked out front


I wanted to steal the mirror out by the pool at our hotel but settled instead for a quick snapshot.


Visiting the Breakers was a treat. This historic legend lives up to the hype and is one of the most beautiful places I've ever been. They even have a Lilly boutique right on the premises! 
(love the painting of the hotel hanging in the shop above!)


One of the gorgeous courtyards at the hotel


The outdoor furniture was so charming and colorful. Not your typical generic patio set, for sure!


The plantings are incredible


The hotel's gift shop - The Breakers News and Gourmet- is a great place to pick up some necessities and non-necessities as well.


Beautiful fountains


The ceiling in the lobby......magnificent.


and this concludes my photo tour. I thought this "living" wall on Worth Avenue was worth showing.
Any places I missed that I need to check out next time?
Have a wonderful weekend!

NEW! CHINOISERIE GINGER JARS No. 6 & 7




Blue and white Chinoiserie jars are perenially popular in my Etsy shop, so
I have now added 2 more now for a total of 9 prints to choose from. These prints are all reproduced from my original, hand painted watercolors and printed on high quality watercolor paper, so it's hard to tell they are not original watercolors. 
Two of the original ginger jar paintings are available for sale also.
Check out the latest here.
Have a wonderful 4th of July holiday and weekend!


ANNECHOVIE ALOHA


Oversized Chinoiserie Ginger Jar (had to pose with this!)

I just returned from a relaxing Winter get-away to Hawaii. After a very hectic beginning to 2013 with a move and lots of crazy work days, I was able to spend a couple of weeks in Honolulu and relish some quality time visiting my boyfriend.


World's best snack (notice the bag is almost empty - a common occurence)


Kiteboarding in Kailua


My gracious host takes me to some terrific eateries - this night it was Italian at Auntie Pasto's
Lots of sun, great food, meaningful conversations, beautiful scenery, good walks, fun smashball matches (we made it to 285 this time!) laughter and rest.


Sandy Beach, Oahu


Just what I needed! My smile says it all.
Thanks to my wonderful boyfriend and the warm, restorative atmosphere of Hawaii, I am now refreshed and ready to get back to work! I hope that all of you have been well and I look forward to catching up with more posts and visits to your blogs soon. Happy 1st of March and have a great weekend.

ARTIST'S PORTRAIT * HARRISON HOWARD

The talented artist, Mr. Harrison Howard

AS I AM MOVING THIS WEEK, I'VE DECIDED TO RE-POST SOME FAVORITE POSTS FROM THE PAST FEW YEARS. I WILL BE BACK WITH FRESH POSTS ONCE THINGS HAVE SETTLED DOWN A BIT! THANK YOU! THIS WAS ORIGINALLY POSTED IN 2007.

A couple of months ago, I was reading one of my favorite design blogs, Peak of Chic, and came across a post on the work of artist Harrison Howard. His style, use of color and obvious talent left an indelible impression on me. I left a comment on the post and was surprised to find that Harrison himself emailed to thank me for it! Sometimes, I find that some talented people can be a bit prone to be impressed with themselves or exude an attitude of entitlement or lack of consideration for others. I sensed none of this from Mr. Howard and was so pleased that he would take the time to acknowledge my comment. He seems to be a very warm and genuine man, seemingly unaware of the talent he possesses and completely unaffected and down to earth. This is certainly one of those instances where you admire or respect the work of someone more established and developed and think, gosh, I'd love to attain to that level of professionalism! Mr. Howard was kind enough to let me "interview" him and feature the man and his work as one of my "Artist's Portraits" here on Annechovie.

Harrison's lovely wife, Lou Ann and son, Alec,
at Harrison's show opening at Thiele and Sons Gallery, La Jolla, CA

"The Greeting" from his Shell and Flower People Series

"The Letter Writer"

Harrison's resume boasts commissions from some of America's most prestigious decorating firms, such as McMillen, Irvine & Fleming and was hired by Pamela Banker (later of Parish-Hadley). His work has appeared in Architectural Digest and also graces many prestigious residences, such as those of the Vanderbilts, Firestones, DuPonts, Goodyears and stars like Kirstie Alley, as well as the Royal Saudi Embassy in Virginia.

"Beautiful IV" from his Shell Series


"Yellow Tree" from the Shell Series

Shells By The Sea

Scripps Park, La Jolla, California

Harrison says that much of his professional career has been devoted to mural work in private houses, and has included screens, panels, easel paintings, and watercolors. Primarily, his work has focused on decorative themes including architectural subjects, chinoiseries, and scenics, often with bird, animal or floral motifs. He has worked extensively with alkyd paints, oil paints, and to a lesser extent, acrylics.

His father, Wing Howard, was also an artist, and is known to many in San Diego, where Harrison now lives, through the murals he painted in the Whaling Bar of the La Valencia Hotel in La Jolla. Harrison started his career at the age of 19 with a one-man exhibit at the upstairs gallery owned by Ross Thiele & Sons Interiors, then located on Prospect Street in La Jolla. All but one of the 24 available watercolors were sold. Since that time Harrison has worked primarily as a freelance artist. Today, Harrison has returned to a focus on smaller paintings, and is now producing limited edition giclee prints of many of these paintings as well.

Harrison resides in gorgeous San Diego, California with his lovely wife, Lou Ann, and teenage son, Alec.

"The Yellow Sail" from his Chinoiserie Series

"The Departure"

Where were you born?I was born in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania to the west of Philadelphia a few miles.


What is your artistic background schooling?
I spent three years at the School of Fine Arts at Boston University in the early seventies studying painting, and later I received a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Design at Art Center College in Pasadena, CA. That program involved a lot of drawing and industrial model building.

What are your earliest memories of being involved making art or wanting to be an artist?My father was a professional artist, although largely self taught, and I never gave any serious consideration to doing anything else. Drawing and painting were a very big preoccupation from the age of five onward, but the results really were rarely anything to suggest that I would choose to be an artist. In hindsight I think I was very close minded about considering alternatives, because there are a lot of other interesting things to do. However, at my present stage of life, I have no more regret about my choice than a parent feels about having their children. I would say my father influenced me more than any formal art training, and the interests that both my parents had in art and traveling.


What inspired you most as your subject matter? Does living near/on the Coast influence your work a lot?
I’m interested in fashion illustration, stage set design, children’s book illustration, decorative and fine art in general, and all of those subjects are sources of inspiration, but in the final analysis I think there’s nothing more dependable than your own imagination, and the things around you in every day life. We have mostly antiques in our house, and they have repeatedly served as props in my paintings. Many of those things conjure ideas that would no doubt seem a big stretch to another person. I do live very close to the Pacific Ocean, and I enjoy that very much, but I don’t really think it has influenced my frame of mind a great deal.


What are some of your favorite things that are essential to your success/well-being as a person and artist?
I think the fact that you ask that question is particularly a reflection on your own personality Anne, which strikes me as exceptionally happy and upbeat, and that shows in your paintings. My wife and seventeen year old son are without question at the core of my well being, as well as my recollections of my parents, who are no longer alive, and my friends and other family members. The fact that I make my living as an artist gives me great satisfaction, because I enjoy immensely what I do. Contrary to the stereotype of artists as tormented souls, I am convinced that artists must enjoy what they do if they want to produce worthwhile results, even if in some cases they may not be particularly happy the rest of the time. The only things that really torments me are all my bills.

Where would you live if you could live anywhere?I would move back and forth between Europe and this country.

What are the most challenging things for you about being an artist?
I think I could speak for the overwhelming majority of full time artists in saying that making a living that meets my family’s needs is the biggest challenge. There’s also always that sense that the next painting is going to be better than the one before it.

Which artists have influenced your work the most?What I find odd is that some of the artists I like the most are not necessarily the ones, who have always influenced me the most. My father, Wing Howard, who taught me to use watercolor, was the most influential, although my paintings are quite different from his. I’ve been influenced by Jean Pillement, Lisbeth Zwerger, (the Austrian illustrator), Kay Nielsen, Charles Doyle, (father of Arthur Conan Doyle), Helen Dryden, (the art deco fashion illustrator), Jean Hugo, and J. J. Grandville. There are many others, not necessarily widely known.


I want to offer my most sincere thanks to Harrison for sharing more about himself and his work with us and encourage you to visit his beautiful site where his museum-worthy works and prints are available for purchase. He also accepts commissions!

CLASSICAL CHINESE FURNITURE


For those of you who appreciate Oriental design and Chinoiserie, you'd enjoy checking out this new book from Vendome that catalogues rare and beautiful pieces of Chinese furniture from the 16th-18th centuries.


The background information is fascinating - author Marcus Flacks covers details like joinery, types of wood (many of which I'd never heard of before), lacquers and Chinese aesthetics.


This sloped cabinet is about 400 years old! It's amazing how these pieces are so "modern" in their style.
Classics are never dated and great bones never lose their appeal to the eye.


The caning and joinery alone on some of these pieces is astounding. To think these were made by skilled craftsmen so long ago with such quality and attention to detail that they have stood the test of time and influenced current Western design so heavily is quite impressive.


Apart from the subject matter alone, I love the clean design of the book and how its' uncluttered and concise format allows you to absorb both the informative text and the artistic delight without the distraction of visual "busyness".
You can find Classical Chinese Furniture here.

VERANDA AND HARRISON HOWARD


I was excited to see this gorgeous piece by my friend, Harrison Howard - talented artist and color master extraordinaire- in the current issue of Veranda.  His work is truly unique and in a league of its own. This beautiful giclee is being offered on his site here. What a lovely Mother's Day gift it would make for the Chinoiserie buff or art lover. 
Harrison is a delightful person, as well as a true master. You can read my interview with him from 2008 here

Have a wonderful weekend!

SUPER SALE AT HARRISON HOWARD

Fellow artist and friend Harrison Howard is having a rare sale on his amazing work.  This is your chance to get a significant savings on his limited edition fine art prints. Harrison is internationally known for his colorful and detailed work and has completed private commissions for some of America's most prominent families and decorators. The 25% off sale runs today through November 18th so hurry and check out the goods here.
ENJOY YOUR WEEKEND!!

EXOTIC TASTE - ORIENTALIST INTERIORS


Vendome Press recently sent me new release"Exotic Taste - Orientalist Interiors". I had to set aside some quality time to look over and visually digest the lush photos and fascinating text. It was a bit like sitting down to a 6 course meal. Most definitely not the kind of experience you want to rush through, as you couldn't possibly appreciate all the details in the photos and the wealth of information contained in the pages.


For those interested in Chinoiserie, you will especially enjoy this book as author Emmanuelle Gaillard provides a rich and educational background on design influences from not only the Far East and China, but India and the Islamic world also. The above photo of the porcelain cabinet at Charlottenburg Palace in Berlin gives a mere glimpse into just how amazing and sumptuous most of these interiors are (and I thought my mom was into her blue and white china!)  You will thoroughly relish feasting on the wonderful photos by Marc Walter and adding this to your personal design library for ongoing reference and enjoyment. Ask for it at your local bookstore or find it for sale online here.

NEW FROM MY STUDIO


How was your weekend?  Mine was especially enjoyable.
Temps in the 70's, sunshine, some great company, sushi and a little bossa nova & relaxation.

Here's the latest from my studio, an original painting of more blue and white porcelain. This piece was painted on gessoed board with painted blue 1 inch edges. It's all ready to hang or set on a shelf or table. If you don't want the original, a print is also available in 2 different sizes - all are here in my shop. I know that a lot of you have requested more blue and white, so here's proof that I am listening and aim to please!!

MINI COOPER EXTRAORDINAIRE


At the risk of committing blatant blog plagiarism (or BBP), I couldn't resist posting this photo that I saw on fabulous blog Beach Bungalow8 that she found on TwillThrill.
It encompasses 3 things I love: the Mini Cooper, the color pink, and a Chinoiserie/de Gournay style "auto mural". Don't worry, I have no immediate plans to do this to my Mini, but I still think it's pretty amazing. 
Whatever you're up to this weekend, I hope you enjoy it and get a little relaxation in!

HARRISON HOWARD PRINT SALE!!

Here's a rare opportunity to aquire some amazing artwork at a substantial discount from my friend and distinguished colleague, Harrison Howard. Harrison's colorful, fanciful and amazingly detailed artwork is found in the homes of some of America's most distinguished families. He's offering 25% off his limited edition prints for a whole week! 
Take advantage of this great offer HERE.

BLUE & WHITE - A PERENNIAL CLASSIC


I hope that you enjoyed your weekend. I hope that all of the wonderful mothers out there had a very special Mother's Day.
Thanks to all of you for the comments and well wishes relating to my grandfather's passing. I just flew home last night and am a bit exhausted, but all of your support and concern means more than you could know! I received messages from people I haven't been in contact with since as far back as pre-school. There are no words to express my appreciation for each of you who took the time to write or comment. I truly am overwhelmed. THANK YOU!
I apologize for being a bit MIA, but will be able to catch up on correspondence, orders and comments this week.

For many of my customers who have requested more blue and white prints, there is now a stretched canvas version of the "Blue and White Ginger Jar". It's available in both an 8x10 and an 11x14 here.
Stay tuned as more new paintings will debut soon!  

A NEW CHAIR SILHOUETTE COLLAGE

The latest in my ongoing series of handcut chair silhouette collages, this piece features an inticately delicate Chinoiserie style chair on a geranium pink background (so intricate that I had a serious case of scissor cramp upon completion!) Measures 12 x 16 inches on board with protective coating. Ready to frame or perfect as is! Limited edition. Available now on my Etsy site.