Monday, September 1, 2014

Create Chateau Paneled Walls and an easy trick to Getting Rid of Wrinkles on fabric

 One of the things I like most about having my little shop is creating display vignettes.
Basically you get to redecorate little bits of the shop over and over and try to engage
your shoppers by creating something that makes them slow down and linger.
This is a small little nook in the shop with two walls that create an L shape. I thought
it would be fun to make it look like a paneled wall
 out of some old chateau in a French Manoir.
After coming up with a story line in my head, I set out to make it happen.
I drew up some big rectangular shaped "panels" using a 4 foot level.
At the top and bottom I traced around an old tole tray to get a shapely
finish.  You can trace around a platter or create a card board template to 
trace around so that they will all be the same.  Do some basic math and figure
out how many panels you want in your space.  My panels were about 18" wide
with 5" in between each one.  The background wall color is a dark taupe, and I don't
remember the color I picked, but it was just your basic satin wall paint.
I used white chalk to draw my shapes.  
 Since we display stuff, I figured I did not need the panels to go to the floor
as they would likely be hidden by our merchandise.  This space is going to be
a bedroom in a French Chateau, and a special tufted linen headboard is on its
 way as we speak. It will go right here when all is said and done.  
 To make it a little bit easier than hand drawing all the details, I used a stencil
to fill in the tops and bottoms of the panels.  I only used one part of the stencil,
and did not use the entire pattern of the stencil.  When you look at getting a stencil,
did you ever think of using only parts of the design pattern?  You can get a lot more
out of every stencil if you use bits of the pattern instead of the entire any rate
I used the acanthus leaf part and placed it to go over the curved areas.  The shells were
added by hand.  Shells are typical in Rococo design, the highly ornate French style of 
furniture and architecture which glorifies nature. The word Rococo derives
 from  the rock, "rocaille" and the shell, "coquille".  Pretty interesting, right?  Rococo is my
favorite design style, and its basically anything with a curve to it.  Rounded chair backs and 
rounded headboards, all those beautiful curves are Rococo style!
 Anyway, back to my Rococo this point I used the stencil with
Paris Grey Chalk Paint® to outline the leaves and the hand drawn shell and then I 
dry brushed Paris Grey on the interior of the panel.  You can see from this pic
I had planned to do bottom panels, but I scratched that idea after realizing that
they would not be seen after putting the furniture in the space.
 After the Paris Grey, I painted on Duck Egg and Duck Egg with some Old White 
in the mix to get some variation of blues and greys on the panels. I used Old White
to highlight the edges of the leaves and shells and the centers of the edges of the panels.
I used some French Linen and a small brush (our gilding brush) and painted shadows
along the bottoms of the leaves and shell and the edges of the panels. This is
in effect creating dimension by adding shadow and light.
 At the end of the day I put all the furniture back in place and left for home.
It looked cool, but it was very flat in appearance. 
Tomorrow I would jump right back in 
and get some dimension on the rest of the wall.
 Versailles Chalk Paint, which is a historical celery green color, was the next color
I used and I painted it in straight lines with a dry brush technique.  Keep your strokes
straight so it gives it a wood paneled look. This is very fast and doesn't have to be
perfect at all.  The more perfect it is, the worse it looks actually! I started to do a bit 
of water spritzing and ragging, but stopped as it was taking away the texture that
the dry brushing gave to the overall appearance.
 Then from out of left field in my brain I thought it might be cool to add a bit
of crocodile pattern to each panel.  I used Pearl Plaster by Artisan Enhancements and
quickly added it in little sections through our CROC stencil, which we sell online.
I have mostly used the CROC and Pearl Plaster over dresser and table tops, so 
putting it on the wall was really kind of fun.  And super easy!  But don't apply it
in perfect fashion, just smear the pearl plaster through partial sections of the stencil.
 This shot shows the random application of the pearl plaster through the large rectangular stencil.  I was LOVING the CROC on the panels! I finished the one wall and had a plan to finish up the adjoining wall the following day.
 The plan was that I would tell Gina, my design assistant to finish the smaller wall.  She 
would need to replicate what I did and do two more panels.  I gave her the basic tutorial like
I have given you all here, and look how well she did!  She was a bit dubious at first, but 
in no time at all she was on a high seeing how well it was coming out and what she had created!
 I wanted you guys to realize that you can do this if you choose.  
Now where would one create panels in their home? 
 How about in a dressing room? Or a bathroom or a little princesses room? Now that
the walls were finished, Gina and I started to set up the vignette.  You can see her on the 
ladder hanging up hardware for our grey linen sheer panels that we sell (both online and in the shop).
But look at the wrinkles in the linen panel! UGH. Well that happens quite often to all of us,
whether its at home or in a shop creating a display, something has wrinkles and it just kills the 
entire look.  Then I remembered I had been asked to review a new product called Downy Wrinkle Releaser Plus!  I had already started testing out the Downy Wrinkle Releaser on a few things, but this was real life and if ever there was a time to take out wrinkles, this was the time! So lets see how Downy Wrinkle Releaser performed.  And for the record I will say that Gina told me that she used it when it 
first came out and she was unimpressed.  I noticed on the information I got with the product it said it was the NEW IMPROVED wrinkle releaser PLUS

 I told Gina that I had tested it out with Cindy, my sales associate earlier in the week and we thought it worked great.  Gina remained dubious...well I always write an honest review and if these wrinkles didn't come out, that is what I would have to tell everybody.  Since I hadn't thought about using the Downy Wrinkle Releaser Plus on this day, and I was in full painting mode with hair pulled up and no makeup etc....I decided to be very brave and let Gina snap a few pics of my spraying the wrinkled linen panels. Sometimes you just have to get over yourself in the name of public service.
 There was a customer shopping who stopped to watch this quickie photo session with the Downy Wrinkle Releaser.  I smiled and aimed the spray bottle at my new creased linen panels.
 I just sprayed until damp in sections at a time. 
 These panels are 102" long so I sprayed about four areas at a time.
  After you spray your wrinkled fabric, 
it says to smooth or tug the fabric to release the wrinkles.
 Placing my hand on either side of the dampened fabric I just smoothed the panel out.
  Out went the wrinkles to Gina's amazement!  
Even the customer watching us do this 
said she was going to go buy some!  I loved how easy it was!
 This could be a game changer around the store and my home. 
 It smells nice and its fast and easy and it REALLY works!!!
 All the creases were removed in about 5 minutes.  
I had to do the other panel~you can see the creases in the one on the right.
The one of the left is hanging beautifully! Thanks to Downy!
And while we are going over this Downy Wrinkle Releaser review,
we did one more test.
 The other test we did was to take out some wrinkles on this
 fabric that came all rolled up and stuffed in a box. UGH.  
Who ships fabric like this??? Well it came with plenty of wrinkles.
 I unrolled the fabric....and there were the wrinkles. 
Okay Downy! Lets get to work!
 We spritzed then rubbed and smoothed out the fabric.
 This product really works.  It takes out wrinkles! 
No steam iron, or steamer needed people.
Gina is getting some, as is Cindy and that shopper and I am too.  
Colin was impressed when he stopped in and worked for me last Saturday,
 so I gave him a spritz bottle so he can look all dandy 
when he goes to his real job during the week!
So this is what it looks like if you are hunting it down. 
You can get it in the supermarket and at Target and Walmart to name a few. 
 I know I will LOVE using this on my dining room tablecloth come the holidays.  
No need to spend hours with iron and ironing board. 
You can also use it for freshening up the smell of your upholstery.  
So do I need to say it? 
 I highly recommend this product, Downy Wrinkle Releaser Plus.
Hope you enjoyed seeing a change we made in our shop on the walls.
  Creating a vision is easy with Chalk Paint® by Annie Sloan
 and a bit of imagination.  Make it happen in your own home! 
 Its all about Making Life More Beautiful for us!
 And thanks for reading the blog today, I know it was another long one. 


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