Italy Workshop excursions :: Custom Textile Studio in Florence – meet Margherita Pandolfini

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One of the many wonderful things about conducting creative retreats in Italy is all of the available talent around our area. Florence is about 2 hours from our doorstep; it’s a beautiful drive or train ride, so the time just speeds by.

I was contacted by the lovely and talented textile designer Margherita Pandolfini, and she invited me to bring my workshop to her gorgeous studio on the outskirts of Florence, located in the middle of the most beautiful courtyard I’ve ever seen. Sometimes opportunities appear that are just unreal here in Italy. Margherita, greeted us at the meticulously handpainted door which foreshadowed the magical storybook journey through the courtyard up some rickety stairs into her surreal world high a top a centuries old building. The loft studio had the most glorious view of the Villa courtyard and gardens. It was a courtyard that could inspire anyone to create beautiful, whimsical, playful patterns of her and her partner’s company MK Textiles and Atelier. Sometimes the wonky creative spaces are by far the most inspiring to me. This space was one of those places that spoke to me.

Margherita, set up painting stations for our attendees, and then gave a brief demo, so we had plenty of time to paint our own cloth bags. As the birds chirped and the sun shined on the incredible view, we happily painted away all morning long.

Please make sure to visit their site and if you have the chance schedule a time to visit.

I have invited Margherita and her partner to Atlanta to speak at Americasmart, too, so please stay tuned for those dates.

In the meantime, look for these beautiful textiles out and about in London and Florence.

xx Annette

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Strictly Styling Workshop June 2018 a recap

As many of you already know, we have been working like crazy to get the Fortress ready for upcoming workshops. Our maiden run was last week for our strictly styling workshop. Needless to say, I was a little anxious to see how our new guest quarters stacked up. I painlessly attended to every detail. Sticking to the idea that less is more and that the ancient walls would speak for themselves. Making sure the beds were comfortable, and the sheets were soft and inviting. Crossing fingers that our bathrooms – which are wet rooms – worked the way we wanted them to. They did.

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Our attendees were a super talented group that consisted of a florist, bloggers and foodstylists, and the stylish owner of a PR firm. This group instantly bonded, and the bond grew tighter as I watched them help and advise each other throughout the their days together. Our team building event of hiking into a waterfall was such fun, and it really showed off the natural beauty around us. We had a picnic, and we chatted and shared our goals and desires throughout the week. All the our days were filled with endless possibilities and inspiration.

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This time I tried something a little different and incorporated a textile painting workshop into the mix. We traveled to Florence for the day to meet Margherita Pandolfini at the studio she shares with partner Karl Jorns.

We had an amazing visit, painted textiles and then headed for lunch at one of my favorite restaurants in Florence. La Menagere.

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After an absolutely stellar, lunch we met up with our tour guide and walked all over Florence with our group ending up at the David. I had not seen the David in so many years; it was fun to see him again.

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We grabbed an aperitivo, and then ended our visit to Florence attending a Sunday Supper’s Sobremesa is a global dinner.

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We ate in what was a former glove factory, with a gathering of creatives from all over the world. The lovely Gaia Cozzi and her adorable father prepared everything and were the perfect hosts. We had a great time with everyone and ended the evening with lots of stories to tell and a fun ride back to the Lunigiana recapping our day.

The workshop was a huge success making it hard to part ways. My hope is all of our workshops will be like this one, and the creative juices will keep flowing.

If you would like to join us in the fall we have a couple of places left in our workshops. They are closing end of July so think fast and join us in September and October. Sign-up here.

xx Annette

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Cookout Cocktail:: Negroni Fizz

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Ciao from Italy! As you might already know, I arrived in Italy last week. Since then, I’ve been welcoming guests, preparing our commercial kitchen and guests quarters, and getting ready for a summer of workshops. Needless to say, it’s been a bit crazy, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.

This weekend is Memorial Day weekend back in the states. Memorial Day weekend often marks the unofficial start to summer. I’m sure many of you will be spending the weekend enjoying cookouts with friends and family.

If you’re entertaining, I’ve got a wonderful festive summer cocktail for you: the Negroni Fizz. Not only is this drink a bold red (perfect for Memorial Day), but it’s a crowd pleaser too.

Mix-up a big batch without the rose and put it in a cute drink dispenser. Then, allow guests to fill their glasses at will. Leave ice buckets of rose nearby for attendees to top their drinks. This will keep the bubbles fresh and add a fun little DIY to the party.

To really make a statement, find some cute blue and white paper straws, too. Super festive and fun.

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Negroni Fizz
Serves 1

You will need:

– 1 ounce Gin
– 1 ounce Martini Sweet Vermouth
– 1 ounce Campari
– 1 1/2 slice of orange for garnish
– Ice cubes
– Martini Sparkling Rose

Instructions:

Combine Martini Rosso and Campari Gin in a shaker filled with ice. Strain into an ice filled tumbler 3/4 full and top off with the Martini Sparkling Rose. Garnish with an orange slice and enjoy.

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Photographs by Kathryn McCrary

This recipe first appeared on Camille Styles.

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Workshop Announcement :: Join us in October

Angie Eric Ripert

Ciao guys! As you know, our summer workshops have sold out.

However, fall workshops are now up for grabs. Full disclosure: we only have a couple spots left in each workshop in September, so we have added a workshop in October. Since it’s olive oil season, it’s the best time to visit our region in Lunigiana. We will be visiting food vendors and the oil press, and tasting wine and truffle hunting will also be on the schedule.

However the most exciting part of this workshop announcement is who will be joining us touring and teaching. Drum roll please…

Angie

Angie Mosier, America’s food styling sweetheart, food writer, food stylist, photographer and producer. Yes, she even styled and photographed for Eric Ripert. Angie is someone I look up to. She is incredibly talented and knowledgeable, well respected, and an all around lovely soul. She will be joined by James Beard award winning chef Chef Rebecca Wilcomb, chef at Herbsaint in New Orleans. Rebecca comes from an Italian background, so returning to her heritage is very exciting indeed. Join us as we cook, style, and photograph our region, take tours of purveyors and food artisans, enjoy visits to farms, dairies, cheese makers, olive groves and orchards, cook with local seasonal ingredients, and drink our own wine from our vineyard at La Fortezza. I am over the moon that these two food superstars will be exploring our food culture with all of us in tow.

This is a very special opportunity to explore our region with these amazing instructors, and it is available to you. To say we are amazed and thrilled would be an understatement. Angie and I have been friends for many years, and the idea that she will be joining me in Italy is a dream come true.

Rebecca

We will be launching her workshop on the site May 1st. I suspect it will sell out in a day. If you want the opportunity to be first on the sign up list, please join our mailing list as we will be sending a newsletter a couple days before it posts live.

Join us for our Angie Mosier workshop in Italy, The Story of Place and Taste: Cooking, Styling and Photographing the Food of Lunigiana. Will launch soon.

See you in Italy.

xx Annette

 

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Cocktail Italiano:: My Book Launch Party at Switch Modern

If you were not there, you missed a spectacular book launch party at Switch Modern in Atlanta last week. Roy and Doug, and Scott and Liz really know how to throw an event. The Aperol Spritzes were flowing non- stop, along with Campari sodas and lovely Italian aperitvio nibbles in the Switch Modern showroom. It was truly spectacular and the perfect way to kick-off the release of my new book, Cocktail Italiano. We had over 150 of the who’s who of Atlanta, and let’s face it: the party crowd was ready to roll.

Roy and Doug Owners of Switch Modern

Roy and Doug Owners of Switch Modern.

Betsy Riley Editor and Chief of Atlanta Magazine, me and Liz Lapidus of Liz Lapidus PR

Betsy Riley Editor and Chief of Atlanta Magazine, me and Liz Lapidus of Liz Lapidus PR.

Me with Rachael and Justin my right and left hands

Me with Rachael and Justin, my right and left hands.

Me with Penny Randolph who illustrated my map

Me with Penny Randolph, who illustrated my map.

Me with Sandy she flew in from Florida, gotta love a fan

Me with Sandy; she flew in from Florida! Gotta love a fan.

Scott Reilly of Switch Modern, Liz and her husband Jeff Levy

Scott Reilly of Switch Modern, Liz and her husband, Jeff Levy.

My web manager Nicole Letts and her mother in law

My web manager, Nicole Letts, and her mother in law.

I had a great time chatting all things Italian Riviera, even though the line was so long, and I signed so many books. I hardly had time to chat. Thank you to the guys at Switch Modern, such an incredible launch. Liz Lapidus the best PR firm in the biz. Gorgeous fun, grazie mille.

Liz and Mary Logan Bikoff Editor and Chief of Atlanta Magazine's Home

Liz and Mary Logan Bikoff, Editor and Chief of Atlanta Magazine’s Home.

The lovely ladies from Americasmart

The lovely ladies from Americasmart.

Me mixing up a Campari Shakerato from my book

Me mixing up a Campari Shakerato from my book.

For those of you asking, I am not going on book tour. Full disclosure: for my last book, I did go on tour all over the USA, but it’s not a thing as much as it used to be. I know it looks glamorous going from city to city signing books, but the truth is that most people buy books online and are too busy to come see you and have you sign their book. When I did my book tour at huge venues and food events last time, I would maybe sign 1 book. It’s just a different time in the world. Even big box stores have a small turn out. So if you would like me to sign a book, email me; we can work out the logistics, quite simply: annette@annettejosephstyle.com

I will do a few US book signings in the fall. But for now, I am concentrating on finishing La Fortezza, and conducting our many workshops in Italy.

You can buy my new book here.

Again, many thanks to all who showed up to support me at my launch, and Liz Lapidus, I love you. x

P.S. Until the 19th of this month, head to Switch Modern’s site and receive a 10% discount if you type in my name annettejoseph in the discount section at checkout.

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Photo Credit: Hillary Harmon of Liz Lapidus PR and Frank Joseph MD

 

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