Tuesday, March 31, 2009
Monday, March 30, 2009
I hope that you have a very good start to your week! This framed print is available now here.
Friday, March 27, 2009
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Modern designers, and particularly creators of contemporary furniture, are, in most instances, driven creatively by the need to remain on the cusp of “cutting edge” design trends, or even to redefine the meaning of what is modern. While this has certainly created some innovative lines, I tend to admire more the designers who can mould traditional object, designs or symbols and recast them in a modern form.
The best example of this phenomenon is Alessi’s Mediterraneo line, designed by Italian artist Emma Silvestris and unveiled in 2005. In this collection, we see toothbrush containers, soap dishes, wall hooks, and other vanity containers molded or imprinted with a free-flowing design that is inspired by marine plant life. But while the design strongly resembles the organic, sinuous form of coral or kelp, Silvestris adds enough quirks along with soft silver and red tones to give the design a more curvaceous, friendlier appeal. What we see in the end is a design that is familiar, but divergent enough to stand out, no matter the design of the room.
Perhaps this can attributed to Silvestris’ background, which is somewhat different from other designers. Born in Salerno, Italy in 1962, she went to college to study Art History and Foreign Literature and spent some time teaching before entering the design world in 1990. Throughout all of her designs she is known for using timeless geometry and symbolism to create a new form of modernism.
This style stands out especially at Alessi, a modern household design firm whose best known designer is New Modernist Philippe Starck. However, the contrasting effect works to its benefit, making the items of the Mediterraneo Collection excellent complimentary pieces for nearly any modern bathroom or kitchen. Sometimes by looking toward the past truly can do design wonders for any modern décor scheme.
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
ideeli is the first invitation-only shopping community. They create daily online events that provide their members with the ideal shopping experience: privileged access to the top brands and experiences, often at prices up to 80% off.
Recent sales have featured brands like Oscar de La Renta, Christian Lacroix, Marc by Marc Jacobs, Balenciaga, D&G and have recently expanded into Home Decor.
Monday, March 23, 2009
Friday, March 20, 2009
Photo courtesy of pointclickhome
Now available: shell habitats for humans. You don't have to be a slimy little creature who carries your home on your back to inhabit a shell. This errr....custom beauty is an actual home located in Isla Mujeres, Mexico. What do you think? Nice little place to "conch" out at the end of the day or a serious aesthetic infraction? You've got to admit, it's NOT generic. I guess it's a sort of modern-day Mexican take on the idea of the architectural "folly" popular in Europe a couple of centuries ago.
I hope you all have a fantastic and restful weekend!
P.S. The pun police will be issuing a warrant for my arrest, I know.
Thursday, March 19, 2009
Looking for the perfect little black dress by a top-notch designer AND at a terrific price? Look no further. Join ideeli now for free, using this link, exclusively for Annechovie readers: www.ideeli.com/invite/annechovie
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
A few years ago I saw Sunny Goode and her work featured in a magazine and was immediately taken with her gorgeous colors and unique designs. Then, last year, I wrote a feature on Sunny and her company here on Annechovie. Much to my surprise, I received a very kind email from her and was then able to interview her in depth for a follow-up post. I was excited when, just last week, I had a chance to meet her in person when she came to town with her beautiful family. We had such a great time chatting, that before we knew it, a couple of hours had passed and we had to break up the fun. Sunny is not only lovely AND talented, but extremely warm, down-to-earth and fun. If you haven't seen her site and blog, you have got to check it out!
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
Monday, March 16, 2009
I'd like to introduce a new friend of mine, the lovely Lisa Porter, who also happens to be a blogger and accomplished artist. Lisa took some time out of her busy schedule to share more about herself and her work, as well as send along a few samples of her exquisite watercolors.
On a hot Arizona afternoon she invited our class to her home for a pool party. We arrived in swimsuits, only to find an empty pool without a drop of water. Always the teacher, Mrs. Ellis supplied us with brushes and watercolors and the freedom to paint whatever our little 5th grade hearts desired. Our palette was the inside of her pool.
She had always told us that it was ok to color outside the lines.
Where are your roots and who influenced you most artistically?
My mother has always had classic style, sophistication, and a keen eye when it comes to fashion and interiors. My grandmother had beautiful taste and was a collector of fine antiques. I consider my desire to create and surround myself with beauty a gift from all of them.
Do you have a favorite book?
When my children were babies, we were living in southern California and I took them to his book signing in Newport Beach. They had no clue who he was but I was practically in tears when he greeted us. He extended his hand, was quiet and kind and spoke directly to my children. He told them, “You both are special, your mom knows it and now so do I.” This book is full of memories and wisdom for me as a child and as a parent.
The architect in me also enjoys painting the many layers of a beautiful home. I like to examine the medley of colors and texture found in wood, stone and lush gardens surrounding a residence.
What inspires you most as an artist?
Being an artist gives me a chance to look deep inside and remind myself that I have so much to be thankful for and so much to give back. Always mindful of my family’s needs, homeschooling two teenagers, managing a busy house with four different schedules, and maintaining the gardens is just one side of my busy life. Doing a watercolor brings my life to a quiet, calm pace. It gives me a chance to focus on only one thing. This is the healthy balance that I need which translates into wellness for me and my family.
Which artists have inspired you the most?
My uncle was also a fabulous artist. He never knew how much I was influenced by his work. His bold use of color caught my eye, however, the fact that he would paint only what he loved and wanted to display privately in his own home, influenced me even more. He taught me to paint what I loved, not what I thought others would want to see.
What is your favorite vacation destination?
Don’t you mean shops? Well let’s see….Williams-Sonoma, Seaside Home La Jolla, Rodger’s Gardens in Newport Beach, and I cannot live without Target.
Well, of course Annechovie. It was you Anne, who inspired me to show my watercolors in a current, daily dose, kind of way. Your kind comments and encouragement mean so much, especially coming from such a talented artist as yourself.
I also like to stop by and put my feet in the sand at Velvet & Linen, and Beach Bungalow 8. We used to live in Manhattan Beach and I miss it terribly. My other stops include stalking Joni at Cote de Texas because, well, I’m an impassioned Texan. Lately I’ve been getting up and having my morning coffee with Patricia Gray and some of my lovely new Australian friends. I love to peek over The Laurel Hedge, and at Gardens by Coty Farquhar. A new fun place to see what the young set is up to is over at According to Nina.
Blogging has opened up a whole new world for me. I am so pleased to have found and visited with so many warm, friendly, funny, and talented people. It is always a refreshing way to start the day.
Thank you so much, Lisa, for this peek into your life and studio! Be sure to visit Lisa's blog here!
Friday, March 13, 2009
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
I love ETSY. I am not just saying that because I happen to have a shop on it....it is an amazing place. Where else can you peruse the wares of so many artists and indie crafters from your armchair or bed? You can find just about anything on Etsy, from art to housewares to jewelry to pet accoutrements. And all handmade - straight from the artist to you. No middle man, no sweatshop-guilt-tainted merchandise. Just the good stuff. AND you are supporting independent artists and crafters. Feel like a magnanimous patron of the arts and shop ETSY today!!
Monday, March 9, 2009
Friday, March 6, 2009
Thursday, March 5, 2009
There are some pretty cool prizes being offered, including: The Domino Book of Decorating, Simon Doonan's "Eccentric Glamour", Ty Pennington's "Good Design Can Change Your Life", the book "Sheetrock and Shellac", and a selection of gift cards to Goodwill (or their favorite local thrift store). There will be 6 total winners because there are two categories--Whole Room and Vignette--and three winners within each category, so your odds are definitely not bad at all! What's stopping you from having your entry posted? Go for it!!
Wednesday, March 4, 2009
Monday, March 2, 2009
I really liked this bench - the color and shape are refreshingly un-generic and downright perky!
Even though we don't exactly have four distinct seasons here in South Florida, there is a palpable difference, even though it may be slight. The days grow longer, the Ocean starts to warm up, certain plants and trees start blooming again. I do seem to get a certain, milder version of Spring fever and my local nursery/garden center is a place I love to visit.