When it comes to art in our home I tend to buy what I like at that moment, over saving my money and buying that signed piece or original art hanging in the gallery.  The reason for this is that I learned early in marriage that I have a tendency to tire of some of the art trends that come and go.

An example of this, and there are many (I just don’t recall the names of the artists that have flitted across my decorating radar over the years), is in 1982 when we moved home to California from Texas (where we were transferred 2 years earlier), “French Country” was a huge design trend.  Not the kind of authentic, French country rooms we see today, but the kind I would call trend-of-the-decade, which various retailers then create accessories, art and furnishings for the consumer.

Garden, Home and PartyIn the early 80’s this was the look!  I had a version of this look in my home, maybe you did too.  I loved it for a decade or more.  (Maybe you still LOVE this style—I am not out to bash anyone’s personal taste, honest).  The artist, living at the time in  Orange County, that captured this French country look/style with his paintings was John Botz.  I loved his work, still do, but for a signed and numbered print back then, the price tag was too steep for our budget.  His work is wonderful in the right setting, but typical of my evolving style at the time, I would have since tired of his art for my home in  it’s current English country, old world, traditional incarnation, and then been compelled to sell it at a consignment store, at a loss.

John Botz, artistJohn Botz

About that time I began scouring antique shops and consignment stores for art I could afford.  I’ve lived with most of what I purchased back then for a very long time and love all of it.  As you will see, several pieces are old graphics I’ve framed.  Mostly, the framing is the most important thing, it can be costly, but it can make even a simple newspaper page look really nice.

Those that have been reading my posts know I’m a confessed Anglophile…

GHP Bethany House Art1Garden, Home and PartyI ordered this architectural print (below) from a frame shop and then the framer tea stained it to look old.  I apologize for the glare on the glass, it really does look old when you see it in person.

Garden, Home and PartyGarden, Home and PartyThe above painting is a favorite for a couple of reasons…it is a print on cardboard of The Skating Minister, originally painted by Sir Henry Raeburn, but it was a gift from my friend and long-time business partner, Wendy.  She had an artist friend that could touch up a print with paint and create the illusion of an actual oil painting.  Wendy “commissioned” her friend to paint this for me and I love it.

The print below was a gift from my Grandma.  It’s titled “Steady Johnny, Steady” and depicts a grandfather and his grandson walking with their fishing rods.  It always reminds me of the close relationship I enjoyed with my Grandma.

Garden, Home and PartyGarden, Home and PartyMy readers have seen this (above)…the historic sailing vessel painting is from a frame store that sells art students art.  It’s original, not signed, but a lovely painting and the best part, it’s very affordable!  {Thank you, Gretchen—I still want you to paint an Union Jack on the mast for me!}

The pair of riders is probably the most expensive painting I own.  I found it in an antique store in San Juan Capistrano.  The only reason I was able to buy it is that they accepted layaway.  It took a few more months of saving to have it framed, I think it was painted by a French painter and I never tire of looking at it {surprise}.

Garden, Home and Party

Garden, Home and PartyThe above picture was in storage at the office where I work.  They were thinking of pitching it…I rescued it and love it.  It’s some kind of art poster but it almost looks like a glass painting in person.

Alison, over at The Polohouse always comes up with such fun topics for her Favorites on the First, and this was no different.  Thanks, Alison.

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