Ornamental Plaster Sculpting, Mural Painting, Faux Finishing, and Imaginative Interior Design.

Ornamental Plaster Sculpting, Mural Painting, Faux Finishing, and Imaginative Interior Design.
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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Q: What's white and lacy with paint all over?

A:  Linda Hughes' living room walls  (OK, yeah...and certain parts of my wardrobe, but I'm not sharing photos of that mess!)

Lace panels are surrounded by a glazed faux finish, using the same colors as Linda's stripes in her kitchen.  (Note:  You can click on the pictures to see them somewhat enlarged.)
When Linda told her neighbors she was having me paint lace on her walls, they thought I was probably stenciling it, maybe even using lace as a mask to paint through.  That's a lovely idea, and it works, but lucky for me, with my love of mixed-media projects, Linda Hughes likes to do things that are a little different.  

This neighbor came to see the lace, and was delighted to be surprised with a painting of hers displayed on the wall!  She had put it in a give-away pile, and Linda just couldn't let it go to the thrift store.  Linda has great taste, and great neighbors!
I wasn't so sure when Linda plucked the painted lace sample from the second batch of samples I brought for her to see.  She had liked several things in the first batch, but would unmake her mind almost as fast as she made it up.  Painted lace is actual lace, painted onto the wall.  As in permanent texture, and not exactly the usual thing folks do to walls.  Linda had so far been pretty particular, and I needed to be sure she loved it on a large scale, before I started this process, so I invited her to my place, where I have it on my artroom walls.

She absolutely loved it.  No doubt, no question, no need to sleep on it. It wasn't that Linda didn't like the other choices.  She just knows better than to settle for anything less than real love.

Here's the version in my art room.  The pattern shows up more with the darker glaze, but the subtlety of white is equally beautiful, when seen in person.  Yes, the trim here is made from burlap and acorns, and yes, the ceiling is quilted.

In my art room, I've done the painted lace technique glazed in moss green, and it goes from ceiling to baseboard, with most of the wall area hidden behind shelving and supplies.  For Linda, I suggested we do it in panels, and to balance with the rest of her place, that we do her lace in white, with a green faux finish surrounding the panels.  This way she would keep a paler version of the green color she had, which had turned out to be way too dark for her north facing condo unit, while lightening up the walls, for that airy, fresh cottage look.

Here's a close-up of one panel, showing three patterns meeting, with a tiny doily masking a bare spot.  To get a similar look to these walls, begin by collecting every piece of lace curtain, tablecloth, valance, doily, and mantilla you can find in a summer of garage-saling.  The stained ones in the Free box are perfectly fine for this.  Next, roll a coat of white paint onto your wall, and while wet, staple the lace to the wall (I cut larger pieces apart for more interest), then roll paint over the top of the lace.  Think of it like decoupage with paint instead of glue.  The staples will show if not strategically placed, so sometimes it's good to add interestingly shaped upholstery tacks for more detail, and to help secure edges and small bits.  Once the paint dries, you can leave it as is, or glaze any color you like over the top.  I used a very sheer umber on Linda's to keep it white, but enhance the details. 

Linda's thrilled to bits with the end result, and with the tweaks she also hired me to make to her furniture and accessory arrangements, throughout the condo.  She knew her taste, and had great pieces, so it was easy to show her a few designer tricks for creating a finished look that flows throughout her home.  It was also a whole lot of fun.  She's one of those clients who takes good care of those she hires, pampering, praising, promoting, and oozing generosity, and she loves to play, too!  I couldn't have asked for a better way to end the summer than creating this mossy, lacy confection for such a sweet soul.

Whatever your style, I'd love to help you take it all the way to blissed-out perfection!  Click on over to my website (theartofthehome.com) to see my full portfolio, and to get the details on how to go about commissioning me.  And yes, as a matter of fact, I do travel.

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