October 22nd, 2008
Some gorgeous examples of aged and patinated surfaces, both real and faux, from the October Veranda…
I’m noticing a LOT more photos in new books and current magazines lately that feature softly glazed walls. God gosh, it’s been 20 years since this became all “the rage” in the eighties. OF COURSE it’s time for a comeback. We’ll just call it “vintage”!
October 15th, 2008
Looking Down the Barrel
Here’s an AMAZING before and after of a barreled ceiling hallway, done by Tammy Murray of Waldwick, NJ.
What a transformation from blah to beautiful. I love this pattern AchAll103, which was created by me playing around with repeating simple architectural border design. Adobe Illustrator can be SO much fun that way!
October 10th, 2008
To Rwanda, with LOVE
Maybe a better title for this post would be “Putting it all in Perspective”. What a very scary week, what with the presidential campaign getting ugly and the stock market and financial outlook even uglier! And yet, we still have SOOOOO much when compared to most of the rest of the world. Oodles, really. Still plenty to give.
My dear friend Maryam wears many hats. She is a famous blogging girl, writer, boutique hotel owner, and Moroccan design specialist extraordinaire, but her most important and impactful hat (besides her mother hat), it that of traveling human rights advocate. Her latest trip to Rwanda is detailed on her mymarrakech blog, and you REALLY SHOULD read every post, starting down with the post from September 27, to get the full picture. But most of all you should read this one about Vestine (be forwarned, it’s disturbing)
After this life changing trip Maryam is actively seeking to raise funds for Vestine and 4 other Rwandan genocide survivors. To quote Maryam from her recent blog post
PS Eeek! Still $700 short for Team Vestine. Please, might you have $10 to spare? You can contribute via paypal to the following address: [email protected]. 100% of the funds will go to helping Vestine and four other genocide survivors set up micro-businesses so they can support themselves with dignity into the future.
I’ve pledged $500, which is about what I spent on my last big shopping spree to buy clothes that I coveted by didn’t really “need”. This made me feel infinitely better than tearing off those price tags….Please consider donating ANY amount, even if it’s just a few Frappucinnos worth. You can be assured that the money will go to directly impacting the precious lives of a few deserving women.
Related sidenote: I’ve been able to change the dates for the next trip to Marrakech to work on Maryam’s Peacock Pavilions from December to January 16-27. We have just a couple of spots left. If you are interested in finding out more about this amazing painting adventure, go here!
October 3rd, 2008
Through the Looking Glass
I wrapped up my first ever Elegant Reflections class earlier this week. It may be illegal to have that much fun! Of course, not everyone gets their kicks by stripping the paint off the backs of mirrors and pouring stinky sulphury stuff over the them to create wild patination patterns…..but some of us do……
Like Julie Stonehouse…
and Georgia Morrow….
I’m SO sorry I didn’t get a picture of Regina Garay, who was here, and has posted about the class on her Fauxology blog. Regina! What bad bloggers we are to not even get a photo of us together!!! Next time….meantime, I think one of my favorite samples that came out of the class was this one above of Regina’s. But there are many more….
Julie’s 23K Gold Leaf Chrysanthemums and glass etching….
My Art Deco Palm Trees…
The dreaming girl with heavy patination…..
The woven linen look through the removed silver…..
Michelle’s heavy distressed and coppered pattern. Here, you are actually looking at the BACK of the mirror, which gets these crazy colors happening and can then be sealed and used as an art piece….
her WAY cool copper and silver number…
An allover pattern with paint, leaf and stain….
and my gilded delicate lattice over light patination. I’m STILL inspired and have some stinky samples “cooking” as I write. Gotta go!!!
Psssst! Next Elegant Reflections class is February 9-10, 2009.
September 24th, 2008
Return to Marrakech
Marrakech is calling. Maryam and I have been emailing. A return trip to Marrakech is in my near future-and maybe yours?? I will be taking a small group on a painting trip this December to continue the creative work that was begun last May at Peacock Pavilions. I thought you’d like a peek into some of the inspiration for the featured project….
Maryam’s master bedroom ceiling will be aglow with a decorative treatment inspired by this pillow I snapped while visiting ABC Carpet&Home in NYC…
as well as the gorgeous, shimmery Moroccan Wedding blankets that Maryam sells.
Let’s just say that our project will involve imitation silver leaf and tiny round mirrors. Can you see it?!
Some mod chairs snatched from La Mamounia may get some interesting calligraphy…
A concrete bedroom floor will be painted with an intriguing labyrinth pattern from our forthcoming new collection…
and the project that has me drooling….a feature wall with a two color metallic graphic based on this amazing screen. The animals you see will be joined by some friends, including an artful peacock, of course!
There are still a few spots open for this upcoming trip. If you’re up for an adventure that includes adding your artistic skills to the forthcoming premier boutique hotel in Marrakech , soaking in the sights, sounds, aromas and tastes of an exotic tourist destination, quading in the desert, enjoying the amazing hospitality of Maryam and the quaint Hotel du Tresor, AND doing your Christmas shopping in Marrakech’s famous souks, you might just want to click here…..
September 20th, 2008
Oh, how I love to show the lovely work of our talented artist/customers. When I created Modello Designs as a business it was with the purpose of helping to expand the art of decorative and architectural finishing by offering artists an easy tool for creating patterns and finishes that are completely custom and unique. Beyond the cutting edge! We get many requests from artists who are participating in local designer showhouses, and we offer them a healthy discount so that they can let their talents shine while promoting their work as well as ours. With pride-
The work of Lesley Kinney of Warwick, Rhode Island
Michele Kelling of Catonsville, Maryland
and Debbie Pearl of Sykesville, Maryland
Aren’t they lovely?
September 18th, 2008
As I am getting prepared this week for my upcoming Elegant Reflections class in two weeks, I think this is the perfect time to post some work from one of our friends and customers, Anna Sadler of Surface Refinements in Scottsdale, Arizona. Anna came to the last mirror patination class that we held here with Tim Poe, the inventor of Antique Patina Mirror Solutions and patterned mirror finishes have become an important part of their portfolio.
How cool is this custom mirror shape?!?
I’m excited for the opportunity to play around again with this product and try out some new techniques. My head is beginning to hurt from all the ideas and options bouncing around in it! It’s time to set them free……
September 11th, 2008
Another artist featured in the Surface Design journal article on floors is Linda Florence. I have seen Linda’s wallpapers featured on blogs and in the book, The Cutting Edge of Wallpaper, but this article focused on her “Sugar” flloors.
Linda, a London-based, award-winning print designer uses stencils to create temporary, ephemeral patterned floors with sugar. SWEET!
She has even created on for a Victoria and Albert Museum exhitition, and part of the creative process involves couples dancing the waltz across the floor.
Wallpapers combine classic floral damasks with computer graphics.
She silkscreens on slate….
and designs extravagant window displays with elaborate vinyl patterns. I’m inspired….are you?
September 2nd, 2008
Designed in Dust
A couple of months ago I happened upon a magazine I’d never seen before in the bookstore. Surface Design is the official journal of the Surface Design Association, an organization that focuses mainly on textile arts. The main title on the cover said, “On the Floor” and I snatched it off the shelf to find a most amazing series of artist’s work inside. The article entitled “Dirty Beauty” features the work of 3 different artists who use dirt, dust and abrasion techniques to create ephemeral installation art. Sounds gross? It’s gorgeous!! For me, it just highlights the power of and beauty of pattern. First up, Catherine Bertola-
My work is about labor, investing time in a very ordinary material….the manual labor involved adds value to something that usually gets swept away. I use dust as a mechanism for storytelling-dust is often described as being the matter of history, a residue or fragment that enables you to reflect on the past.
You can read more about Catherine’s work here.
August 25th, 2008
You know how when you first move into a new place that needs work you go great guns with the decorating and getting things done? Well I did that last winter when we first took over in our new building, getting some office spaces and common areas designed and artfully painted, and then hit a big fat wall! There are just SO many surfaces and spaces to do-and so many other things that needed attended too, I had to take a break. Fortunately, I have local painting friends that are so sick of coming by and seeing things half done that they’ve taken matters into their own hands-literally. My friend Karen Jorgenson has been orgainizing people to come down and trowel, stencil, glaze-you name it. I’m SO grateful for being forced to make some design decisions and very happy with the outcomes so far.
I actually saw this magazing ad AFTER I picked the color scheme for the “meeting room” end of the studio, but it just reinforced for me how absolutely wonderful these colors are together. A couple of trips to Marrakech helped too! Hmmm. Wish I could afford those drapes and chairs….
I picked a super easy finish for these walls of of azure, lavender, hot pink and orange from the Sydney Harbour color deck.
Their Interno Lime Wash is a wonderful lime paint that simply get cross-hatched on in two or three layers over an easy-to-apply primer. We had two people working this large wall expanse, because you DO need to be concerned about keeping a wet edge to avoid “lap lines”.
The lime paint dries much lighter, as you can see here where Julie is adding a second coat of pink. Left unsealed (which they recommend) it will continue to “bloom” and change over time. It’s very soft and gorgeous. On the blue wall, though, I sealed it with a water-soluable Bee’s Wax (troweled on) which gives it some added protection and also made the color deeper and richer.
This week, we will be interpreting this arch shape (is this not gorgeous?!) on the lavender wall, using the blue and orange colors to tie it all together. More to come….