Thursday, May 26, 2011

New Faux Finish techniques

When you think of Faux Finish techniques what immediately pops into your head? If you're like me I think of sponge painting, rag rolling, feathering and marbling that was oh so popular back in the 90's and everyone's mom was trying it. But did you know that faux finishing has been around much longer than the last 20+ years? Cave paintings are considered a form of faux finishing, so honestly people have been decorating their homes since the beginning of time.  Another form of faux finishing that has existed for centuries is the trompe l'oeil.  The concept behind a trompe l'oeil is to fool the viewer into thinking that what they are looking at is real, but when actuality it is a painting; consider it an optical illusion.  Aside from these murals artists would also paint faux marble and faux wood.  Great recognition was awarded to the artist being able to truly fool someone into believing it was real.

I think that's enough history for today.  Sherwin Williams has a variety of new faux products on the market and I was able to check them all out first hand this week.  There is a new restaurant that opened in Draper, UT called Vuz and it is absolutely gorgeous!  The architect, James Carroll and owners did such an amazing job utilizing the various materials and faux finishes, it is just beautiful.

One of the types of faux finishes they used is called Venetian plaster.  I'm sure most of you have heard of it and it's actually one of the more labor intensive finishes to accomplish because of what goes into creating it.   Sherwin Williams has a great product now that is tintable to any shade they carry which gives you endless options for what you want to create.  Both of the photos below are the Venetian plaster treatment.  Notice how the light bounces off parts.  That's where the wall has been burnished and waxed to create a reflective surface.

Another faux finish option Sherwin Williams now carries is a line of tintable metallics.  They are such a quality product.  Years ago metallic paint was difficult to use, but this new stuff from Sherwin is amazing.  From the above pictures you see the silver metallic diamonds, that was all done with paint.

 There are a variety of decorative medallions and corbels throughout the space and they all have this touch of copper to them.  At first glance they appear like real metal, but they're not.  This technique adds whimsy and elegance to the restaurant.

These great ceiling tiles were inspired by a hot spot in Vegas.  In Vegas they were made from Stainless Steel.  Here they're MDF with Sherwin Williams fantastic metallic paint.

Sherwin Williams also created a great product called Quartz stone.  It has flecks of mica in it which is metallic; it almost looks like tiny drops of glitter.  Quartz stone is really awesome in the variety of ways that you can use it.  It gives a sand paper type feel to the wall adding texture and visual interest.

This wall behind the glass statue has the quartz stone on it.  It was placed on and then a putty knife was dragged through it to expose the paint behind.  The desired effect is to have the wall appear like stone. It's better in person I promise.

Going back to the trompe l'oeil I mentioned before, here is a beautiful example of it.  The clouds on the ceiling look realistic and that sense of whimsy to the space.  You can't tell but there are mirrors at the ceiling above the booths to have it appear endless. 

So those are a few new ways to use faux finishing in your projects that aren't going to date your space like sponge painting did in the 90s.

And I highly recommend that you check out this restaurant.  The pictures do not even do it justice and the food is good too.

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