On the Water

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I am so excited to share this project with you! Recently Christie Leu of Christie Leu Interiors called me up because she had a realization that I would be the one to solve a design dilema for her and her client.

Originally she had specified a wallpaper for a feature wall in the foyer of her client's bay front property in Ocean City, MD. But because the wall was so tall (19' to be exact) the cost to have it custom made was way over budget. Then it dawned on her that I could create a finish inspired by the wallpaper, and stay within the budget! A win-win!

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Christie sent me the sample and I went to work creating a painted version of it. I wanted to keep the grasscloth texture like the original so I decided to go with a plaster ground. Once dry, I layered glazes, wiping back and adding more, until the desired effect was achieved.

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I think the final product is a showstopper and really compliments the stunning design work in the home. The house was remodeled from top to bottom and Christie really did a beautiful job. I hope the clients have many happy years there.

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Do you have a design dilema we could help with? Contact us today!

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Excited About Patterns

Over the holiday break I took some time to dig into some creative projects I had been wanting to try for a while. Setting aside time can be exciting and at times overwhelming because I get so amped I don't know where to start first. I don't know about you, but when I get an idea I want to drop what I'm doing and dive head first into it but this whole "adulting" thing has me on a pretty tight leash so I have to wait until I have completed my prior obligations before I can begin. And by that time I've got so many ideas its like I have ADD! One thing I did manage to accomplish is design a stencil for myself. One of my goals this year is to learn how to create a repeat pattern on the computer. This one I did by hand and then had Hugh Hoeger at The Mad Stencilist create the design in Adobe and cut it for me. With the mathematical accuracy of a computer I knew that it would be the best way to make the design line up and repeat as cleanly as possible.

Lenehan Studios, decorative painting, faux painting, murals, trompe l’oeil, ceiling mural, children’s mural, wall art, custom art, faux, faux finishing, Baltimore, Ellicott city, woodgraining, marbling, plaster, painting, artist, local, Dee Lenehan, cabinetry painting, furniture painting
Lenehan Studios, decorative painting, faux painting, murals, trompe l’oeil, ceiling mural, children’s mural, wall art, custom art, faux, faux finishing, Baltimore, Ellicott city, woodgraining, marbling, plaster, painting, artist, local, Dee Lenehan, cabinetry painting, furniture painting

My design came from a textile I found while internet surfing for inspiration. I took the general idea and had to work it into a design that would allow for stenciling. Creating the "bridges" to keep the design together was tricky at first but once I "saw" the positive and negative spaces in my mind I was able to draw it out.

Lenehan Studios, decorative painting, faux painting, murals, trompe l’oeil, ceiling mural, children’s mural, wall art, custom art, faux, faux finishing, Baltimore, Ellicott city, woodgraining, marbling, plaster, painting, artist, local, Dee Lenehan, cabinetry painting, furniture painting
Lenehan Studios, decorative painting, faux painting, murals, trompe l’oeil, ceiling mural, children’s mural, wall art, custom art, faux, faux finishing, Baltimore, Ellicott city, woodgraining, marbling, plaster, painting, artist, local, Dee Lenehan, cabinetry painting, furniture painting

I was so excited to receive my package from California that I immediately got to work trying out two different looks. I love this design and want to try more. I'm calling it "Imogen." I have a ton of ideas piling up so looks like I'll have to set aside more time to "play!"

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Happy Accidents

Not everything goes according to plan.  (That should be this year's motto.) With this job I had a major "oops" where the finish I was supposed to do on the ceiling didn't quite turn out as planned.

I had completed the walls last year with a glazed plaster texture and the client wanted to do something on the ceiling that complimented but didn't upstage them.  I also had glazed the trim in her kitchen to match the cabinetry and she wanted to do the same in these rooms too. Normally when I do samples I keep notes and swatches of the different paint colors and mixes that I use. For some reason I didn't do that this time. Don't ask me why. I'm usually good at remembering my process but this time I don't remember what I did. I tried guessing but that didn't quite work. I was about to pull the plug and start over but thankfully my client talked me off the ledge. We came up with a solution that turned out to be even better than the original plan.

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I have to say that normally I would be mortified that the job went south but with a client like this, who is very creative and flexible, was absolutely amazing.

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Its so hard to capture the subtlety so I pumped up the definition a bit. If you'd like to see the finish in person give me a call, I now have a sample that matches!

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The final result is what to me looks like what could be a deteriorated plaster with hints of old wallpaper discoloration on a Parisian apartment salon wall. It has a very subtle crackle with gold peeking though. The colors are all slight variations of taupe, grey, and tan. I am absolutely in love and have tried doing this type of finish several times with no success. I guess you could say it was a happy accident!

Gilding Class with Annie Lemarie!

In conjunction with our local chapter of the International Decorative Artisans League (IDAL), the Greater Maryland Decorative Artisans (GMDA) will be hosting a gilding class with Annie Lemarie of Main Street Arts! Link to GMDA's blog: http://greatermarylanddecorativeartisans.wordpress.com/2014/02/15/two-gilding-classes-by-annie-lemaire/

Description:

Basic Gilding                Thursday, March 6th,  9am to 1pm (4 hours)

$155 for GMDA members, $165 for non-members

Learn the basics of gilding!  Using 23K gold leaf, we will learn to handle, cut, pick up and apply genuine leaf.  We will also explore types of applications using 23K, composition leaf, copper leaf and aluminum leaf.  Learn how to seal, tint and tone leaf.  Class samples will include gold on carved molding, leafing through a stencil, and production applications such as rolling gold and working with roll leaf (two different things!). We will work on a “sales” board, laying different kinds of leaf for using to upsell your gilding projects.

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Glass Gilding           Friday, March 7, 9am-4pm (7 hours)

$250 for GMDA members, $260 non-members

Verre Eglomise is a technique of gilding and painting the reverse side of glass.  In this class, you will learn the basics of applying real 23K gold leaf to glass and creating designs with the leaf. We will discuss traditional techniques for backing and creating backgrounds and layered images.  In this class, however, we will be using more modern techniques to create stunning backgrounds for your patterns.  Students will create their own work of art, and there will be opportunity to play with additional pieces as you wish.  Previous gilding experience is helpful, but not necessary.  Please bring a favorite stencil or pattern, with a fairly simple design (please, nothing too intricate), suitable for use on an 8 x 10 piece and a mop brush (no larger than a #10). There will be other designs available.  If you already have gilding tools, please bring them, otherwise you may use studio tools.

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Annie Lemarie has been in the decorative finishing industry since 1980. She works, primarily to the trade, with a wide variety of media and techniques.  The business has evolved to include conservation and restoration of architectural painted finishes, frames and works of art.  She also consults with contractors and homeowners regarding historic paint and decoration. Clients include trade customers, private homeowners, the National Park Service, the Smithsonian, the City of Baltimore and the State of Maryland. She has been an instructor for the Decorative Painting Apprenticeship Program and IDAL. She is a past president of Habitat for Humanity of Washington County (MD), former member of the International Decorative Artisans League (IDAL) board, and is currently a Trustee with the Society of Gilders. Her studio is in her historic home in Sharpsburg, Maryland.

The classes will be held at Dee Cunningham’s Studio, 8602A Frederick Road, Ellicott City, MD

Please Pay before February 28th!

Mail a check (made out to GMDA) to Cathy Rinn (10607 Montrose Ave, #3, Bethesda MD. 20814) or contact Cathy ( cathrinn@msn.com ) and she will send you an email with a  Pay Pal invoice to pay with your credit card ( you do not need a pay pal account to do this).