Tuesday, March 04, 2014

Jocasta and Paint Love

No secret here that I love painted surfaces - on paper, canvases, boards, fabric and walls. I was really psyched when I received the March issue of World of Interiors - my favorite decorating magazine. In it, an article called The Innes Effect, featured the  home of the author Jocasta Innes. The article is written by her son about Jocasta's home in the Spitalfields area of London. It is a great read and the pictures are superb. World of Interiors has a Facebook page which features photos and upcoming articles. Here is the link. It is about to go off sale because of the months changing so if you want to pick it up, act fast.

World of Interiors - March 2014 issue
This is Jocasta's sitting room. What a lovely room with high ceilings, dark painted woodwork, and tiled fireplace.

Jocasta's sitting room with portrait of her mom from World of Interiors

This is Jocasta's hallway - full of paint treatments galore. From the article I learned that the building she bought was a real dump. With ingenuity and very little money, she transformed it into a grand house.

Jocasta's hallway from World of Interiors
Sadly Jocasta is no longer with us. She passed away in early 2013. Reading this made me so sad. You see, I learned to do decorative painting from Jocasta's incredibly popular book Paint Magic. And later Decorating with Paint.  It was the late 80's and decorative painting was all the rage. Somehow I found the book (pre-internet days) and with Jocasta's words, I figured out how to colorwash, drag, and stencil all with little money but with a lot of experimentation. With the skills, I decorated our first home. I was hooked.

Jocasta wrote over 60 books - many at her kitchen table on a typewriter. Her son recounts in WOI how she would cook dinner all day long, organize contractors, write her books, all at the same time from this kitchen table. Talk about multi-tasking before that was even a term.

Jocasta's kitchen in World of Interiors
I went down the rabbit hole trying to find out more about Jocasta. Here is a rather entertaining and amazing obituary from her local newspaper including an interview with her. Gee, I sure would have liked to have dinner with her at that kitchen table. Here is an obit from London's Guardian.

What an amazing woman. RIP Jocasta and thank you for all you taught me and shared with the world. 


Unknown said...

Kristin, what a lovely post. The two books you pictured have been an inspiration to me since I purchased the first one in 1986. My notation inside the cover shows I purchased it in Toronto, so I wonder if her books were even available in the States in those early years. Now that we've retired to Santa Fe after 30 years in the same home, I find myself turning to her again with great enthusiam. Your own home is so delightful. I always enjoy your photos. Many thanks for sharing them.

Pam in Santa Fe

Frances said...

Krisitin, like Pam, I discovered Jocasta Innes's creative energy way, way back in the last century.

I would also recommend to you some daily reading of the Spitalfields Life blog. I have met the gentle author, and can report that he is a marvelous writer, but also a strong supporter of all that is good about the history and present day of the East End of London.

Lengthening this message, might I also tell you and your other readers that Jocasta Innes's classic book The Pauper's Cookbook is being reissued this spring and that you can pre-order the reissue via Amazon. The existing copies of the original publication are out there, but very expensive...too much for a pauper who likes to cook and eat well.


MicheleinMaine said...

Thanks for introducing me to these wonderful books! I'd love to find a single copy of the March issue of that magazine, but it doesn't seem readily available online.

Frances said...

Hello Kristin and thanks for your visit and comment.

I actually don't really know which publisher is doing the reissue of The Pauper's Cookbook. I'd just seen the reissue mentioned and placed an Amazon pre-order. This is still at the pre-order stage, with Amazon sending me little follow up emails thanking me for my patience.

You are fortunate to have the original book!

On that other topic, it's actually over the freezing mark in NYC today.


Kristin Nicholas said...

Hi Michele - You can buy World of Interiors at B&N. I don't think you can buy single issues on line - it is a subscription.

I don't think you live close to one of them but maybe a friend can get it for you? I would volunteer but can't get to one this weekend b/c I am going away to CO.

Good luck

Candie said...

Kristin, thanks to your blog, I now own Jocasta's Country Kitchen and am awaiting the arrival of The Pauper's Cookbook. :) I would have never known about this author, or these books, if not for your interest in her and writing about her. Thank you.

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