Annie Sloan on her love of fine art and eclectic decorating style

The chalk paint legend explains how she collects antiques and what's at the top of her interiors shopping list

A portrait of Annie Sloan holding a roll of monochrome fabric

My home is a Victorian townhouse and it’s decorated with a mixture of things that I love, from 18th-century European art to African design. My favourite room is forever changing. In the summer I enjoy my garden room, which has lots of bright natural light, but in the winter I love my cosy siting room. I like the assortment in my home, there’s thrifty, expensive and colourful – I feel like I’m successfully making a connection between traditional and modern.

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The first piece of furniture I ever bought was a large chest that I painted with a scene in the Seventies, many years before painted furniture really took of. I tried to sell it on afterwards but a furniture dealer said: ‘Nice piece. Trouble is, I’ll have to get all the paint of first!’

I’ve got lots of old things in my home including a Roman spearhead on a stand that I like a lot.

My most recent purchase was a beautiful sofa without a bottom to it. It’s a gorgeous little thing but the whole seat cushion was missing. I made a new one from my linens, which I then added details to with my paint. I wanted to mimic the beautiful floral embroidered pattern on the back of the sofa.

At the top of my wishlist is a stunning chair covered in old ikat fabric. I haven’t even asked the price of it because I think it will probably be ridiculous. It’s so unique, with beautiful Uzbek fabric and a proper leather back.

A swatch of red and yellow Ikat fabric
Annie is currently coveting a beautiful antique chair upholstered in old Uzbek fabric, much like this antique silk ikat panel that costs £665 from 1st Dibs.

My passion for paint comes from fine art and paintings, which give me great inspiration for the way shade and texture can be used. My love for colour started very young as we had lots of different prints and hues in our home. My father inspired me the most, and I can remember him talking a lot about colour, including why he loved different shades.

My favourite painted piece in my home is a desk that I painted many years ago with my Chalk Paint in Old Violet, Emperor’s Silk and Old White. I love the desk itself because it was a cheap, 1930s piece that nobody wanted – I actually bought eight of them from St Anne’s College in Oxford. I sold the rest, but I kept this one because I just adore the colour combination.

I love collecting jugs. They’re so useful and can be used in a variety of ways. I also have a passion for plants and I have so many ferns in my house at the moment. I get to travel a lot with what I do, so I also adore buying ceramics and pieces from local artisans wherever I go.

On a free day I have to make the effort to go out and do something other than work. Yesterday was lovely: I looked after my little granddaughter and we went to the Natural History Museum at Tring. It’s basically a museum of stuffed animals – you walk in and immediately see a polar bear.

A home should be a place that tells a story. Mine represents so many memories that I’ve created with my family.

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Annie Sloan has recently launched a new range of detail brushes. For details visit anniesloan.com