Last week, my dear cyber friend, fellow blogger and decorative painter, Regina Garay, had a post that really hit home for me. In Regina's entry she laments about so many decorating articles that elude to the fact that "finishers are not savvy about trends." She goes on to say "We, as an industry, are battling to showcase that, although we did thrive during the “faux” heyday, we’re also capable of the cleaner, cosmopolitan finishes of today. It’s tough out there – trying to maintain a finger on the current pulse, land jobs and at the same time, market correctly in this brave new world. Sharp, resourceful information is hard to come by — and I get cranky when I get cheated of it." To add insult to injury I will also report that I have had many Interior Designers tell me their clients just do not want "faux" right now. I cringe, as do most decorative painters, at the use of "faux". We are not doing "faux" any more than we are thinking designers are installing avocado appliances in their clients kitchens. Our industry has and does change with the current trends. The top stencil design companies, Royal Designs, Stencil Library, Cutting Edge Stencils, Henny Donovan Motif, Lu Graphics, Olive Leaf Stencils, just to name a few; all have the most incredible stencils out that showcase the very same designs you are seeing on all the interior design blog sites and in the magazines. In fact, both Royal Designs and the Stencil Library designs are featured prominently in recent issues of Martha Stewart and Better Homes and Gardens.
I had a date last week with a man who owns a local paint contracting company. He blatantly sat there, looked me in the eyes, and told me "faux" is out. Duh. He said he occasionally does a "rag roll", but mostly people do not want "faux" now. When I explained to him that big, over-scaled patterns, hand painted with stencils are my best sellers right now, he was clueless. I mentioned all the beautiful metallic paints and plasters that are available to the trade and the many different effects we can achieve with such products. He did not seem to comprehend.
So, like Regina, I was just a wee bit annoyed at someone telling me what I do every day is "out", when they really had no clue at all of what decorative painters are doing now that "faux" is not in vogue. Needless to say, no second date for this man.
For those of you who are not in this business, but just enjoy reading and seeing what's "in" for home fashion, take a good look at the walls in magazines and on the home decor blog sites. Color is big. Metallics are everywhere. Overscale designs abound. Pattern is everywhere: Moroccan inspired, Scandinavian, French, Italian... Inspiration is drawn from so many cultures, our clothing and home fashions are all influenced globally now. Decorative painters bring these elements to your homes and businesses, in custom sizes, custom colors, custom finishes; to best represent your personality in your personal space.
For those of you who ARE in this business, when you do a job using one of the many wonderful designer stencils available to us, post a photo or two of that job on Facebook, your website, your blog and send a photo to the stencil designer so they can see how you interpreted their design. You'd be surprised to see how much interest, world wide one photo can attract, and isn't that just a great way to showcase our industry? Remember my yellow stairs, inspired by Melanie Royal's Moroccan stencils and her trip to Peacock Pavilion? That picture has made it's way around the globe. We've spotted it posted on over ten blogs from the U.S. to Norway, to Italy, to France. As decorative painters/artists, we often post our work on our private forums and inspire each other. Don't forget about posting outside of the forums so the world can also be inspired by your work and understand just how our field evolves with the latest trends, lest someone think all we do is "faux".