November 30th, 2011


Allow me to introduce you to Sylvie Bilger and Metamorfaux.

I had the great pleasure of meeting Sylvie this past October when she attended my last painting trip to Marrakech as one of our very special Peacock Painters. Originally from France, Sylvie has a joie de vivre that is both infectious and endearing. She also happens to be a classically trained decorative artist with an impressive resume.  Sylvie learned her craft first during 4 years in the Ecole National des Arts Appliques et des Metiers d’ Art. She followed that with a year at the Institute de peinture Van Der Kelen in Brussels where she perfected her decorative painting skills in trompe l’oeil, wood graining, marbleizing and lettering. Impressed yet? Well, to top that off she then proceeded to work for two years doing restoration at the Palace of Versailles. Yeah. Cool. For the last 25 years she has lived and worked in NYC, and established her decorative painting company, Metamorfaux with her artist/husband Joe Bilger.

Right before we left for our Morocco trip, she contacted me regarding the opportunity to sponsor the decoration of  a space in the annual Holiday House NYC-an annual showcase and fundraiser for the Susan G Komen foundation for breast cancer research. Of course I said yes! The space was of the sort normally given to decorative painters-a hallway. Hallways are actually fabulous, because they are generally lacking the need for furniture and you can be left to let the paint treatment be the star. Sylvie was inspired by the stenciling that I had designed the year before for a dining tent in Morocco, and this became the basis for the hallway decoration at Holiday House. Of course, she reinterpreted the idea unique and special way. Let’s see, shall we?

Sylvie used a combination of Royal Design Studio stencils and Modello masking patterns. I suggested the Modello patterns for the ceiling, because they can be so much easier than trying to maneuver a large stencil around, and we were able to cut the design to fit the space exactly. Above, she is removing the transfer tape to begin the painting process with metallic paints from Modern Masters.

We also provided Modello patterns for the the arches and medallion. Again, the Modellos are much easier to apply and decorate an otherwise difficult space like these arches!

Cut to a week later, and…..voila! Sylvie used our new large Peacock Feather stencil on the walls. I love how she has them trailing randomly from the ceiling line,

and added just a little extra touch on the window treatment.

More of our Moroccan  stencils were used in the small hallway, including Moroccan Lace, the Fez Corner, and the Fez Floral Border.

A final touch of magic happened when the light fixture was installed. Along with a warm, reflective glow, it adds a whole other dreamy layer of geometric pattern to an already beautifully designed space.

Here is a shot of Sylvie and our mutual Moroccan traveler and friend, artist Tom Henman-her lucky date to the opening night Gala! If you happen to be in the NYC area you can check out Sylvie’s work along with many other beautifully designed and decorated rooms at Holiday House NYC through December 11!

5 Responses to “Metamorfaux”

  1. Jeannies Designs Says:

    Very nice story and i love her style! Beautiful job! I will try to make the show.

  2. Ann @ Plumsiena Says:

    I have been admiring Sylvie’s progress shots; its wonderful to see the finished project.

    Gorgeous, gorgeous job! I wish I was closer!

  3. Joan Angwin Says:

    It’s so fabulous… Well done.. Sylvie is such a special person..

  4. Regina Says:

    LOVE the project — and Sylvie seems so amazing, personally and artistically! Happy to hear she is just as wonderful in person as she seems in the webverse.

  5. Dana Tucker Says:

    What a creative use of pattern in that hallway. I love seeing such inspiring applications from such talented artists. Thanks so much for sharing this project!