August 13th, 2010
Sparkling Susan Bickford
I have blogged here before about Susan Bickford and her decorative finishing business, Singing Walls. Susan is a wonderful, regular customer of Modello Designs whose work has been featured extensively in our inspirational “idea” books, Modello by Design-Inspiring Interiors from Artists’ Portfolios. Susan recently sent me photos of a fabulous ceiling project that, unfortunately, came too late to make it into the most recent book. Fortunately though, it’s NEVER too late for a blog post!
Susan worked with one of our talented graphic designers, Michelle, to customize our popular EasPan114 pattern, which features classic Japanese plum blossom branches, for a bedroom ceiling. You can see how well she coordinated to the colors to the drapery material in the room in the shot above.
As an added touch, Susan and her friend Elaine Castronova added 100′s of sparkling, Swarovski crystal to accent the flower petals.
Some of the photos of Susan’s work which DID make it into the recent book show the heights that she will go to in order to add a pattern that will compliment an architectural feature! Shown here, OrnCen164 in a dome-topped stairwell.
EasPan102 used for a fabulous striped treatment by Susan, along with another decorative artist, Lorna Soble.
Above, a motif pulled from our Ornamental Panel Collection was used in pie shaped dome. I particularly love this photo because it represents how much impact you can get just by using a fairly simple and enexpensive Modello pattern. It’s hard to imagine that this space would have even a fraction of the visual interest it does without the bold contrast of colors and design.
Click here for more information about Modello by Design-Inspiring Interiors from Artists’ Portfolios, Volume 2
PS It just so happens that today, August 13, is Susan’s birthday. Happy Birthday Susan!!
June 16th, 2010
I am very happy to report that the long-awaited followup book to Modello by Design-Inspiring Interiors, from Artist’ Portfolios Vol. 1 is at the printers and will be available for shipping in a few weeks time. This latest version, Vol. 2, features some amazing work by 68 professional decorative artisans from around the country. Three different artisans were chosen as “featured artists” based on the depth and range of their work, as well as the beautiful photography that they submitted. First and foremost in the book is Gracie Reed of Grace Designs in Dallas. Her work is featured on the book’s cover.
Gracie brings a special quality to her decorative work. Her amazing attention to detail is evident in the way that she blends patterns, colors, textures and finishes. Also outstanding is the way that she carefully styles each room. The barrel ceiling shown above features our popular Chambord carpet and panel pattern.
Here, a patinated and patterned mirror, using Flourish969, rests atop an elegantly stenciled furniture piece.
Embedded pattern on Venetian plaster walls, FlorentineGrille705, is beautifully accented with more patinated and patterned mirror. Here, OrnTile137 is repeated in custom shutters.
One of our tribal panel patterns, IndPan105 , was cut small to create a custom art piece that seems perfectly balanced with an entry table.
Our Prajna concrete carpet pattern anchors this rich Victorian-style parlor with a complimentary punch of color.
You can see much more of Gracie’s work, and many more inspirational interior shots (175 in all!) in this new book. Due to the high cost of printing, we are offering a very limited amount of these books for sale. You can pre-order the book until July 15 at a $3 savings. Additionally, we will deduct the U.S. ground shipping charges upon invoicing for a total savings of $17. Book sales are brisk! Don’t miss the opportunity to reserve your limited-edition copy of Modello by Design-Inspiring Interiors from Artists’ Portfolios, Vol. 2!
February 28th, 2010
Faux Plus Design
I’d like to welcome another friend and decorative finisher to the blogging world. Debbie Hayes is a very talented Greensboro, NC decorative artist who has been featured a few times before on this blog.
Her new blog, Faux Plus Design showcases her photography and literary talents (she’s a former newspaper editor) as well as her artistic skills. Debbie has accompanied me on several of the painting adventures abroad that I’ve been involved with in the past, including France, Morocco, and Italy.
She talks about these (and her ongoing wanderlust) in some recent blog posts, including one on Moroccan Souk kitties….
…and one on our last trip to Italy.
Some of these travels have inspired the color-saturated decoration of her amazing, inviting studio!
I am happy that Debbie (and her talents and ever-ready camera) will be joining us on our next trip to Italy this coming Fall. To find out more about trips to both Italy and Morocco, click here….
February 9th, 2010
Sideways….a classic name for a classic movie about one of my favorite things….wine! Another of my favorite things? Cool customer project photos showing interesting applications for our Modello patterns. For example, these two photos from two different artists showing a horizontal (sideways!) application of one of our contemporary allover designs, ModAll129.
For this project on a glass backsplash, Lesley Anne Kinney of Decorating Divas RI used a reverse painting technique using oil paint and mica powders to create a contemporary woodgrain look. Awesome!
Barb Skivington of Faux Works used a similar idea recently for a builders showcase project in Greensboro, N.C. It this case, Barb painted on MDF to create a contemporary headboard. She ran the design vertically but on very horizontal surface. Classy!
Pssst! Check out this article that I wrote on Barb and her art and business for the latest issue of The Faux Finisher……
October 28th, 2009
A Table or Two Please
Just in time for you to start thinking about all those handcrafted Christmas gifts you’ll be giving this year….I give you a fabulous little stenciled side table treatment from Dagmar Alexandersson! Dagmar created these lovely custom tables recently as a wedding present. She used acrylic paints and tile stencils from Royal Design Studio to create the look of embroidered table cloths on some simple fold-up tray tables. I adore the added tassels!
Dagmar was a welcome addition to our group on the Umbria Italy Painting Trip with Gary Lord and myself last May. Gary and I are finalizing the fabulous details for a return trip to Umbria and Tuscany in early October 2010. Please email me at melanie(at)modellodesigns.com if you’d like to be placed on the priority list for notification when we open up registrations in a couple of weeks.
October 26th, 2009
High Style in High Point
My good friend, Barb Skivington, has undeniably one of the loveliest decorative finishing teaching studios in the whole country-Faux Works Studio in High Point, NC. Besides a state-of-the-art studio area, it also includes an elegant showroom full of interesting decorative treatments. Many of the featured treatments incorporate Modello patterns. Am I biased? Maybe. Are they fabulous? Definitely. Take a look…
Multiple Modern Allover patterns are worked into an allover metallic wall treatment. The tile idea is a great way to work in different patterns and slight color variations while maintaining a cohesive look, don’t you think??
This is one of our exclusive Marquetry patterns, MarqAll106 done on cork tiles in the coffee bar area. One of the benefits of staining pattern on unfinished cork tiles (as we did also in our showroom spaces at Modello Designs) is that you can do the pattern work prior to installation-much easier than working down on the floor!
An allover Eastern Lattice pattern, EasAll106, painted on a table in the teaching studio.
Some custom Typography to define different workshops and the unique finishes that Barb teaches.
Barb will be teaching one of her famous cabinet finishes classes here at our San Diego studio this November. The class is sold out, but you can find Barb teaching both at her own studio and other great studios around the country throughout the year-including a “date-to-be determined” back here in San Diego. Just check the Workshop page on the Faux Works Studio website.
October 25th, 2009
Ready, Set, Photo-Part Two
Here are some more inspiring images from the forthcoming Modello by Design-Inspiring Images from Artist’s Portfolios, Part 2. These are all from a talented single artist-Rita Melnick.
A beautiful frieze using TransBor116
Lovely Art Deco, lined leaves with ModAll111
A simple architectural frame pulled from our Chambord Carpet and Panel pattern.
An interesting wall “bump-out” that looks like a 3-panel screen using OrnTile162
Pssst! Don’t be shy-don’t forget-submit YOUR project photos by October 31…..get the details here….
October 23rd, 2009
Ready, Set, Photo-Part One
Back in June, 2008 we published the first edition of Modello by Design-Inspiring Images from Artist’s Portfolios. Featuring the work of 80 different decorative artisans using our Modello patterns, this book has become a definitive resource tool for ideas, inspiration, and enticement for incorporating Modellos into interior and exterior projects. Our next edition will be released in early 2010, and we’ve been receiving some fabulous photos that really highlight the range of options and applications for decorative pattern in surface finishes…
A custom fireplace surround by Joy Conway using a modified version of EasPan109
Beautiful handpainted ceramic bowl by Jeff Raum using Royal Design Studio’s Elegancia Border as a Modello around the edge.
TransBor132 used by Joannie Gaillardia in a decorator showhouse.
Virgina Weathersby’s simple yet highly elegant custom curtains using OrnBor132
Hand painted detailing by Deanne Cunningham over OrnCen 130 on a custom tabletop.
ModAll124 on a contemporary art canvase by Krista Vind.
The deadline for submitting professional-quality project photos for the next Modello by Design book is fast approaching-October 31, 2009. You can find all the details and directions here!
August 26th, 2009
Proof positive that any surface and be enhanced with design and decoration…
We recently had a drawing to encourage our customers to post photos of their projects using Royal Design Studio stencils or Modello Decorative Masking Patterns on our Facebook Fan Page. If there were a prize given for “most unusual surface”, these would have surely won. Kathy Wear is an incredibly creative and talented decorative artist from Tennessee, who has created a unique niche market for herself by offering custom decoration of new, high-end bath, um…fixtures. After applying Primetch through a Modello masking pattern, she then gilds and seals a custom design onto the porcelain surface to create a throne fit for a king, queen-or princess.
UPDATE: A lot of people asked about the process so I posted some basic steps in the Comments section…..
August 14th, 2009
Modello Ceiling: Its a Process
I enjoy showing a lot of pretty final photos of work that our customers do with our Modello Decorative Masking patterns on this blog. You know, TA DA !! You may be wondering, though, “how do they DO that?” The short answer is, “it’s a process”. Recently, Pat Ganino of Creative Evolution chronicalled that process of doing a rather complex custom ceiling decoration on his fabulous message board in this Faux Forum message thread.
What you see above is the pattern “key” that outlines how the individual tiles of cut Modello masking pattern stencils are designed to fit together to cover a LARGE ceiling area. This particular design incorporates many different patterns that were laid out in a customized manner to fit perfectly in the space, and accomodate architectural features that were already in place.
To assist with this large project, Pat called in Modello grand ceiling expert, Gina Wolfrum. I’ve posted here before about Gina’s fabulous ceilings, and Gina was one of the featured artists in our Modello by Design book. Gina worked with Marc Potocsky to get the pattern pieces installed and lined up perfectly. This is actually the hardest part!
Does this picture make YOU as nervous as it does me??? You can see most of the pattern in place here. The blue material used for this project is our lowest-tack material, and many artists prefer to use this on ceilings as there is less chance for surface damage when removing it later. You see, many times in new construction there are underlying surface issues due to improper prep and priming over dusty drywall. This issue is discussed under Surface Issues on our FAQ page, and sealing with Gardz is another good option.
After removing the transfer tape that holds all the pattern pieces together until they are transferred securely to the surface, Gina gives it all another hard burnish….
…and it’s ready for the fun part-decoration. Because they were using paint for the pattern decoration in this particular project, they also took the extra step to “seal” the pattern by rolling over it with a clear medium. Clear Setcoat from Faux Effects is good for this, but any water-based topcoat will do. This seals the edges of the pattern on the surface, ensuring that the paint to come will not find a way to seep under, and allows for a very clean final print of the design.
Different colors of paint were applied to different areas of the pattern…
…and gold, metallic accent to the banding. Once dry, the pattern is removed…
…and in the matter of a few days a grand, ornate ceiling design is revealed! I so appreciate Pat, Marc, and Gina sharing this with us!! All photos courtesy of The Faux Forum, a great source of information and inspiration-by and for decorative artists from all over the world.
FYI, Pat is now vlogging about his next BIG project-painting two twelve story buildings in Brookly, NY in 60 days.