The world of decorative painting is limitless, ever-changing and richly complex. Working in countless exquisite homes with designers, architects, builders and homeowners over the last 17 years, I have constantly explored new techniques and finishes for a variety of styles and tastes. I am so excited to share some of these insights with you at the upcoming Dine + Design Luncheon and offer a few secrets on how to enhance your client’s homes by melding architecture, period and personal style with the perfect finish.
 
For more information on Dine + Design or to RSVP, email Lindsey Villarreal at LVillarreal@mcmcmail.com.
 
 

My philosophy is that when you enter a room, your eyes should not draw a distinction to any one element or finish, but should see the surroundings as a whole. Using this as my guiding principle, I've seen first-hand how natural plasters, furniture-finished cabinetry and decorative details on walls, ceilings and floors can truly transform the overall aesthetic of a home. These finishes enhance your favorite architectural details and distract from less desirable features while also adding warmth, character and a custom feel.
 
 


With so many directions and endless possibilities, how do you know which finish will create the best backdrop to complement your home's architecture, fabrics and furnishings? Here's a quick guide to the most popular finishes:
 
 


The use of plaster in settings today creates stunning architectural effects. The depth and movement of this material, when applied over sheetrock, produces the impression of hand-carved archways and windows appearing to be placed in deep wall insets. The use of plaster allows door, window, crown and base moldings to be minimized, while still maintaining the design. Its character truly blends with any surrounding.
 
 


Quality finishes turn ordinary built-ins into unique cupboards that appear to be purchased and incorporated into the design. A range of glazing, staining or distressing techniques can be used on cabinets, creating beautiful furniture pieces that transform kitchens or bathrooms into warm and inviting spaces with character.
 
 


Applying an all-over pattern on walls, floors or ceilings gives a wallpaper feel but without the practical concerns of seams pulling up or mold growing beneath the surface. Unlike wallpaper, stenciled and decorative designs can be customized with colors and backgrounds to suit the room's fabrics, furnishings and art. Depending on the method of paint application, the same design can be either soft or dramatic.
 
 


Mural painting is one of the oldest forms of artistic expression, dating back to 15,000 BC. The use of murals in interior design has experienced a revival, working wonders to individualize the space and divert the eye from less desirable features. Curved staircases, domes, niches and any other areas where it's difficult to hang art are perfect places to decorate with murals.
 
 


Faux finishing, a term that derives from the French word “faux,” meaning “false,” describes a wide range of decorative painting techniques. These techniques originated as a way to replicate expensive materials such as marble and wood with paint. The label has subsequently come to encompass many more decorative finishes. Visit us at http://www.segretofinishes.com/.