Oxford’s own Annie Sloan – fine artist, paint-maker, colour expert, entrepreneur, and author – has opened her archives for OX Homes. For this issue, Annie tells us how she uses colour to enhance the outdoor – and outdoor facing – areas in her home.
My Oxford home has a garden room which is beautifully sheltered from the vicissitudes of the local climate, and one of my favourite places to be on a Summer’s day, whatever the weather. I can’t fail to find inspiration in the natural colours around me, and I have spent some time making the room feel as effortless and natural as the garden space outside. What looks like a wall of beautifully weathered Tuscan plaster is, in fact, created using my Chalk Paint™. The ambiance is enhanced with bright pops of colourful, painted furniture.
To create this plaster effect for yourself, apply a base layer of Chalk Paint™ in Scandinavian Pink over the entire wall. Once dry, add sections of diluted Paloma over the top in random areas.
I work with a 50/50 paint to water ratio, but adjust it as I go to vary the opacity and character, which adds to the authenticity of the finished result. Paint the mixture on in small sections and while it is still wet use a bit of crumpled up newspaper to rub some of the paint away. This will help create that all-important texture. Once it is fully dry, do a final wash of the diluted Paloma all over to give a powdery, romantic, plaster effect.
As my garden room is sheltered, I haven’t needed to use a lacquer, but if your space is in a particularly wet or sun exposed area consider using Matt Chalk Paint™ Lacquer for a muted, soft look or my Gloss Lacquer, which will help mimic Venetian egg gloss plaster. Each will give full UV protection to prevent colours fading and help durability.
If a full wall of paint effect feels beyond your capability (truly, it’s not – do give it a go if that’s a look you like) go for an all over colour, like this sunroom or conservatory, painted in my summery, warm Chalk Paint™ in Arles.
I’ve added vibrant Florence accents once again, and I love the way it works to enhance the natural greenery.
Here I’ve used the English Yellow from my collection to transform what was some very tired-looking outdoor furniture. My Chalk Paint™ is ideal for outdoor upcycling! I’ve used it on pots, fences, sheds – even walls. Make sure that whatever it is you are painting is given a quick wipe down to remove any dirt or cobwebs and you might need to spend a little time addressing any peeling paintwork or rust. If you like the more rustic look, you can just paint over lumps and bumps but rust may well leach through if not tackled prior to painting and, as the new coat of paint won’t be acting as a seal, flaky bits will eventually break through the lovely layer you’ve just applied.
Unless you’re painting a shiny surface (like plastic garden furniture) there’s no need to sand – just layer on that colour and allow it to fully dry before adding a coat of Chalk Paint™ Lacquer to protect against water, fading or UV damage. It’s really important to cover the whole surface, including any nooks and crannies as even a tiny gap could allow water in which would be damaging. I strongly suggest using a couple of coats with a few hours drying-time between each application. And, do make sure it has fully dried before you start expose it to the elements.
That’s really all there is to it. Enjoy the rest of the summer – be it sunshine or showers!
I wanted to focus on indoor-outdoor living for this Summer issue but I’m dying to tell you more about my latest launch; Annie Sloan Satin Paint. Designed specifically for internal woods and metals, it dries with a smooth, satin-like sheen. I’ll be sharing more on the inspirational ways you can use this new addition to my collection in the Autumn issue of OX Homes but for now, I’m delighted to say you can paint your entire home in Annie Sloan; top-to-toe – or skirting to ceiling!