The Changing Winds of Home Decor

The Changing Winds of Home Decor

There is really nothing more beautiful to me than the elegance of a room design incorporating  glorious colour and the changing winds of home decor are bringing colour back! 

Warm. Cozy. Timeless

I can’t imagine anything better than that.

home decor, home goods, colour, design
Lovely Florida home by G.P. Schafer featured in Luxe Magazine.

Designers who create rooms incorporating traditional looks with a few clean  contemporary accents or some wonderful vintage or antique pieces take my breath away and make my heart beat.  Beautiful design can always do that to me.

Obviously colour is a major factor in the design of all beautiful rooms.  Although I enjoyed the grey/whites and accompanying pale palette that was trending...it is cold…Brrrh!  I think that everyone staying home during the covid pandemic spent a lot of time looking around and deciding to make some changes in their homes especially related to reintoducing colour…putting the colour revolution on the fast track!

What do you think?  Are you ready to move on to some great color and tradition?  or will you holding on to the cooler palettes?

Change on the wholesale level is already in full swing so you are going to find less of the outgoing trends and colours.  

Have you ever looked for home decor and accents in colors that have recently passed out of favor?  Then you know how hard it can be to find them.  When the market starts to transition it is always wise to finish a room before home accents become  scarce.

 Personally, I am wholeheartedly embracing the return of color!

home decor, home goods, colour
Magnificent beach house foyer by interior designer Jack Philips. Photo by Brantley Photo

I love the way Janelle of Janelle’s Designs made this vanity stand out by incorporating Gold!

home decor, colour,  design
A touch of gold on gray makes this vanity stand out! Photographed and Painted by Janells Designs.  You can find Janell on instagram @janellsdesigns

Painting Away the Winter Blues

Oh to have some summer warmth!

I’m getting to be such a sissy.  I think I used to enjoy the winter….now I only like it if I am skiing…

Well, at least it is good for getting those indoor projects accomplished.

The Whistling Elk Paint Workshops
Chest painted with Baltic Black Paint Couture!™ and glazed with Black Walnut

I just finished putting the hardware back on this pretty chest.  It was a medium brown stain when I started and of course I forgot to take a “before” picture.  My client brought it in for refinishing…

We decided it needed to be black so I used my Paint Couture! Baltic Black then glazed it with Black Walnut.  It really looks very elegant and the hardware which was a rich brassy gold looks perfect – I didn’t even embellish it!

Sometimes refinishing a piece doesn’t call for a lot of fuss…there really is nothing like Simple Elegance!

Chester, NJ
Simply elegant chest

Chase Away the Winter Blues…

Make plans to take a paint class at The Whistling Elk!

 

Finger Painting With Gilding Wax…it’s bringing back memories!

Finger Painting With Gilding Wax…it’s bringing back memories!

I always had so much fun Finger Painting when I was a kid and now I get to do it again…

with The Couture Collection – they have a great selection of Gilding Waxes which I love to use to accent a painted finish – any painted finish…even one I didn’t paint!  (heehee)

This cute frame was pretty before I started but now I like it even better.  It had an all over copper look and now it has touches of green moire and the gold lame that I finger-painted on which gave the original finish a lot more depth.

The Whistling Elk, Chester NJ
Gilding Wax adds depth to a finish

That is the beauty of the Paint Couture line…you can paint something one color, OR paint and glaze, OR paint, glaze and gild for a finish that has deep, layered and elegant dimension!

We will be happy to teach you all of these techniques at our Paint Workshops!

Call for the date of the next scheduled Class and make a reservation to attend.  You will have so much fun!  I guarantee you will leave class contemplating all the objects around the house that you will be painting or glazing or gilding or maybe all three!

The Whistling Elk, Chester NJ
Paint Couture Gilding Wax

To enhance a painted finish you simply apply the gilding wax with your finger or with a small artist brush! and voila the perfect way to accent your finished paint project!  If you decide to finger paint – a little coconut oil will clean up your talented fingers.

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I’m Diggin Van Dyke Brown

I used the Van Dyke Brown Glaze today over Imagine and I’m diggin it!

Paint Workshops at The Whistling Elk in Chester NJ
Paint Couture!™

While I was painting the pedestal the other day with IMAGINE  I painted up some paint sample sticks too.

Chester NJ
Paint Couture!™ Paint and Glaze on sample sticks

Today I glazed/painted them 10 different ways – I used a new philosophy when glazing these sticks…all the other ones I have done were glazed/removed pretty evenly.  This time I decided show different degrees of removing the glaze…all my paint students have different ideas of how much/little glaze they would remove…so these samples look uneven but I did it with purpose to show variety!

Paint Workshops
Paint Couture!™ paints and glazes in Chester NJ

I also used 3 of the gilding waxes on some of my Paint Couture!™ samples.

So all the samples were painted with 2 coats of Imagine and part of the stick was finished with Matte Lacquer Couture!™.  (The glaze does not bite in as much over the lacquer and gives you more flexibility to work with the glaze.)

So from the left here is how I finished each stick:

In the first group photo above

1. brilliant white & rich gold metallic paint/Blue Organza Gilding Wax

2. Brilliant White Paint/Green Moire and Silver Taffeta Gilding Wax

3. Verde Glaze

4. Black Chiffon Glaze

5. Zinc Glaze

and in the 2nd group photo:

6. Black Walnut Glaze

7. Champagne Glaze

8. Amber Honey Glaze

9. Lite Brown Sugar Glaze

10. Van Dyke Brown Glaze

So after making all the samples I decided to glaze the pedestal with the Black Chiffon.  The pedestal was an older piece and had a lot of marks and texture (which I kept because I liked the character) and I love the way the black chiffon kinda highlighted the “age” of the piece….so here is the finished pedestal with Imagine, Brilliant White, Rich Gold and Black Chiffon Glaze Couture!™.  (Also in the photo collage is a before the glaze photo).

The Whistling Elk
Paint Workshops at The Whistling Elk in Chester NJ

Still having fun!  Call and join one of our Paint Workshops!

Do It Yourself Drapes at The Whistling Elk Oh My!

The Whistling Elk designs beautiful drapes
Rod Pocket Drapes

For many years the 1st floor of my home was bathed in jewel tones…very rich.  In January I had the 1st floor painted Benjamin Moore Stonington Gray which I am loving.  But it is a whole new ballgame now!  Fortunately for me all the furniture works (and that’s good because I love every piece I have and would not give any of it up!!!).  The  drapes  in my Breakfast Room had to go though.  I didn’t want to spend a fortune on replacing them right now…so I confess I made them.  Now I am a girl with a workroom and a taste for very beautiful expensive fabric and trim so this is a real departure for me to admit that I did this…Oh my!  and worse yet I can sew beautifully!  Oh oh my!

I bought some very inexpensive fabric in a soft gray slubby solid that drapes beautifully.   I measured then cut four panels from the fabric, got out my trusty iron and used glue tape to hem all around…then turned over the top to form a pocket and glued that down with the tape…Oh my!  It took me about 3 hours to make all four and cost me about $100.  Oh my!

They are simple rod pocket drapes, unlined and will not last like the ones that I could have had my workroom make for me…but that’s ok cause if I get tired of them I can throw them away without guilt.  Oh my!  They are quite elegant draping nicely with a couple inches of break on the floor.  I am loving them!

This is a Do It Yourself success.   I am thinking of having a workshop on this…no kidding!  Oh my!

Finishing Up a Few Paint Details Before the Chester Craft Show

painted furniture, diy, chalk paint, acrylic paint, architecture
painting architectural details to stand out

I am working on a table right now with nice architectural details…cant wait to see it finished!
Tomorrow is the spring Chester Craft Show…We are going to showcase some of our painted furniture during the show. You can also sign up for our Paint Workshops…the next one is June 13th at 5:30 pm. Call for more information 908-879-2425. Space is limited so you must register and leave a $50 deposit.

These are fun informal workshops! The June 13th class will cover chalk paint paint finishes and introduce Paint Couture! our new acrylic paints…in total you will learn 5 different finishes and leave thinking about all the great things you are going to do with furniture you have in the garage or basement. You will be creating masterpieces…

painted furniture, diy

The top of this piece is actually going to be black…and i have a lot more gold to apply. Its going to be stunning! And to think it was stashed in the basement…

painted furniture, diy, furniture, Paint Couture!
painted and gilded table in the works

Yesterday i was on a painting rampage

While i worked on painting the little stool I was also painting on some small boxes…then as i had the Annie Sloan paints open i decided to experiment with the inside of my pantry closet. I am working up to painting all my kitchen cabinets but that will have to wait for another day off from The Whistling Elk.

On the back and side walls of the closet i used provence and then on the shelves used duck egg. Love the subtle contrast! (I think my kitchen chandelier is throwing an interesting pattern on the shelves for a little play on light and shadows.)
I only did one section because i only had a very little Provence…but i will have to get more because i love the way it turned out. The room is Benjamin Moore Stonington Gray so these two colors work wonderfully well as an accent.

I still have plenty of the duck egg so i guess i will finish this project after i go shopping for more paint. Meanwhile i was also working on my old pine bookcase. More pix on that later!

Paint is part of accessorizing a bookcase


This wall mounted bookcase is in my guest bedroom. It’s from Elden Collections. I have always loved the architectual feeling it brought to the room. Since i just finished painting the room Ben Moore Adagio i decided to give the bookcase a facelift. Since the room is going in a shabby chic direction i went with Decorator’s White advance semi gloss. This is a fairly new trim paint from ben moore that is water base but it paints on like oil base…love it and the finished product!

blah blah

Elegant Entrance

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As you enter our new shop you are greeted with an elegant design vignette that showcases our sofas, art, lamps draperies and carpets…
The paint is Ben Moore Silver Mink – its one of my new favorites!
Every time i walk into this room I feel surrounded by beauty. The details please the eye and create an atmosphere of comfort and warmth. I love the soft color scheme…it makes me want to curl up with a book amongst the pillows on the sofa.

The seasons are changing…time for cozy details at home

It’s that time of year when having a throw blanket to curl up with is really important.

I love piling up a group of  throws in soft, natural colors with some of our custom pillows –

It’s hard to resist going by this chair without stroking the throws which do not disappoint!

They are soft & luxurious – so cozy!

kennebunk weavers throws

The iron canopy bed in our Bonne Nuit colored bedroom is virtually packed with custom made pillows…

Textillery throw blankets are piled here…they are acrylic chenille and just exquisite.

I have several at home and can’t bear to actually use them – I just love to drape them everywhere – ooh la la!

custom pillows, bedding and draperies

Below a gorgeous purple silk drapery embroidered with sprigs of leaves shimmers with a reddish tinge when you move it…

a fabulous multi-colored bullion adorns it as it hangs over the entrance doorway to this bedroom.

I love the way the ready made 100% cotton organdy embroidered floral drapes hang on the other side of the doorway

creating a multi-layered elegance and depth – very pleasing to the eye (mine anyway).

ready made drapes

Both The Whistling Elk and Little Paris are ready for season change…are you?

The Great Annie Sloan Paint Experiment

I decided to experiment with the Annie Sloan paints…

so i bought some Paris Grey and some Clear Wax and have been painting everything in sight for the last couple of days…

out in front of The Whistling Elk in the courtyard.

Painted furniture
Round Table Painted with Annie Sloan Paint

This is actually a before shot….

The bottom legs/skirt etc has  been coated with Annie Sloan “Paris Grey” while the top has an old coat of a beige tone benjamin moore paint on it.

Originally this table had a dark stain on it.  It has been hanging around for a while and was pretty beat up.

When i selected it to experiment with i thought it might be fun because when distressed it would show the dark stain thru the beige…and the Paris Grey.

Annie Sloan Paint

I also selected this table because it has nice detail for painting.  The top has a raised pattern to it around the edges which

is separated from the center by two circular grooves which i plan to gild. And, the little finial

at the bottom of the leg stretchers is screaming out for gold…

So with my design plan in my head and the brush in my hand, the Annie Sloan paint went on easily and covered well…waxing was easy too.

annie sloan paint
Painted Table with Fleur de Lis

After sanding the table and distressing it to the level i desired i painted a fleur de lis on top with some antique gold paint i had around

and also put the gold in the round grooves and on the outer edges of the table.

Then i waxed it again…

The next day I sanded it down again, distressing the gold paint and the fleur de lis.

I sanded some spots down to the very dark stain but decided i didnt like what i had so repainted/waxed some spots and re-distressed.

I actually really like the soft beige coming thru the Paris Grey.

I also decided not to distress to strongly overall as i liked the softness of the look.  So, when i was satisfied with what i had i  waxed it one last time.  The next day i buffed it out.

Annie Sloan Paint – Table and Chairs

I had these two upholstered chairs so i painted and distressed the chair legs to go with the table!

It was easy – paint, wax, sand/distress, wax….Voila!

So Very, Very Shabby Chic and perfect for  Little Paris!!

Painted Table and chairs

here’s what the chair legs looked like before…

Annie Sloan paint on chair legs

So the bottom line is that i am enjoying the whole process and having lots of fun with the Annie Sloan Paints!

Stay tuned because i hateto waste time so have been painting on other little projects which are coming along…

Painting Fleur de Lis Stencils for a Romantic Room Design

wall design
Fleur de lis stencil for the wall design

Here on my desk is my lastest project for a client.  We are going to paint fleur de lis designs randomly on her office walls.  I cut this Fleur de lis stencil when i painted the Paris Boudoir in Little Paris shop.

In order to give my client some choices for how the fleur de lis will look i first painted some copy paper with the wall color (2 coats)…

wall design fleur de lis stencil
fleur de lis stencil with modern masters 14k gold metallic paint

Then i stenciled the fleur le lis design over the paint three different ways.   The first (above) is stenciled with just full strength modern masters 14k metallic gold paint.

For the 2nd sample of the wall design i mxed the 14k metallic gold with glaze to make it more transparent.

wall design painting
fleur de lis stencil with modern masters 14k mettallic gold mixed with glaze for a room wall design

Lastly, I added some paint crystals to the 14kgold/glaze mixture (below).  This gives the fleur de lis a glittery effect.

The glitter will catch the light and sparkle – its a faint effect so you actually wonder if you are really seeing it!  Love it!

wall design
fleur de lis with paint crystals

Voila !  Beautiful effect -so easy to do and painted randomly around the room makes a completely original wall design!

 PS….I have little sparkles all over me (from the paint crystals)….its like fairy dust maybe it will bring me luck today at The Whistling Elk.

the shop still looks pretty…we still have gifts for all!

It’s still christmas here at The Whistling Elk and Little Paris…things are still sparkling!

and vibrant and happy colours are everywhere….

The bedroom is all dressed for Christmas….so inviting!

pretty soon it will all be over again, sigh, i will miss it!

Little Paris Opens Quietly Today!!

Well, today was the day!

We opened Little Paris to the public – we still have a few kinks to work out but we decided to go ahead and softly greet the world!

Here’s a little virtual tour….its better to click on each picture to see everything – I didnt want to shrink them too much!

Have fun!   Here’s the entrance foyer/staircase.

Going up the regal staircase…

Looking up the staircase into the French Country Estate Room. 

The Paris Boudoir

Remember this Vanity that we purchased in June, I think…

There are two of these prints in Little Paris….so amazing! 

venice window pictures


This next series of pictures is from our Paris Apartment Room

We are calling this last room the French Country Estate Room…

as it just kinda took on its own easy going relaxed  feeling.

Well, that’s it….I will finish up the details and have the Grand Opening in Early September!!

I want to move into my little Paris Apartment…

The bedroom portion of the Paris Apartment room is almost complete.  I finished the window treatments last night. 

 The cornice box is made of cardboard and painted with a white texture paint.  I love the light feeling of this room!

These pastel vases are so pretty!

  I would love to put them on my vanity.

Compassion….

excuses, excuses

OK, I have been hibernating…at least that is my excuse for not keeping you uptodate…

I have been working on Little Paris a minute here and a minute there

…painting, organizing, moving things (that i shouldn’t be), planning etc.  Task by task i am getting there….

heres a few pictures -first  my ceiling medalion in the Paris Boudoir

 
 
K now for excuse #2 – my camera is on the blink…so the picture quality is not going to be pristine….sigh.

Here’s some images of the staircase that i have been adding to daily!

I freehand painted this railing using a stencil for the little gold details – my yardstick and

tiny little paintbrush were my best friends! I added the swirl on top of the railing yesterday – i really love it!

This swag will hang at the head of the bed with side draperies…

and finally, i am ready to hang these cornice boxes over the windows….

they are made of cardboard with wood trim and a little texture paint.  

There is a crown for the top middle but i havent attached it as yet.

Stay cool!

The devil in the details!

I’m still painting!

Yes, the devil is in the details…but if you want perfection – ya gotta go for it!

Had my mom cut me a few stencils from architectural pictures i collected…then used parts of them randomly.

Here’s the beginning of the faux iron staircase railings!

Just finished drawing this in today and will start painting on it tomorrow!

Happy Fourth!

Everyone needs a little pink

I just finished painting the “Paris Apartment” in our Little Paris shop…

it’s a beautiful shade of pink called Cotton Candy!

 If you ever told me i’d be painting pink walls in any room of mine – I’d have laughed….

but yes people can change and adapt.  I really love it.

Here’s some pink inspiration for you!

 

via http://bellafayegarden.tumblr.com

Yes I am truly loving the pink!!!

So now two rooms of Little Paris are on their way to completion….

Happy Father’s Day all.

Paris boudoir gets a fresh coat of paint

So i just finished priming the walls of the Paris Boudoir!  

This brings Little Paris a step closer to opening day.   Painting is great therapy…

you can think about anything you want and get the job done at the same time

with very satisfying results.

Now I have the final coat of ADAGIO on – if I was in love with this color before NOW i am over the top!

It’s beautiful, soft, inviting, soothing and the perfect backdrop for the furnishings

set to go into the Paris Boudoir.

The mantel too is ready for gilding and for the appliques that will be strategically placed on it.  Tomorrow.

Dont you just love the little red cup…I guess painting is thirsty work!

Benjamin Moore’s Adagio is greyer when well lit by daylight and bluer in the evening when the sun sets.  A very

adapatable color.  Enjoy your Sunday – I’ll be painting later after closing…

Surrounded by beauty

Good Evening…I’m so worn out from spending hours and hours and hours on website creation…so much

uploading and design work!  I needed a break so i thought i’d just upload a picture here and say hi…i sold the painting in

the background and i still miss seeing it in the shop!  It’s so gratifying to have pictures that

remind you of such beauty.