Comments : 29

Hello there, buckle your seat belts you are in for a major treat, a feast for the eyes and an incredible sharing of information on all you have ever wanted to know about hand painted murals and chinsoiserie panels from the maestro himself.

I am over the moon? to be here today to introduce my newest sponsor, Paul Montgomery.? Someone who certainly needs no introduction!? Yes, the maker of? those beautiful murals and iconic chinoiserie panels that have been? featured in too many publications and sites to count.

I am so thrilled that Paul Montgomery? found The Enchanted Home a suitable fit for their gorgeous line and is my newest sponsor.I have been a long time fan of their exquisite line of work, and I still remember the very first time I laid eyes on one of their iconic rooms.

I was in? CT. at a home for someone’s birthday and I nearly fainted from the beauty. Of course I needed to find out all the details and the name, Paul Montgomery was forever etched in my mind.? Their beautiful creations take them all over the world and grace countless private residences, hotels, palaces and just about any other place you can dream up!

I am excited to also announce that I am working with them to produce my own dining room chinoisierie panels and it cannot happen soon enough….I have dreamed of them for so long! And now it is finally happening. I have a sample which is pretty close to what I have envisioned ..so we are getting there and with any luck, I will have them up by Christmas.

I was thrilled to have been able to interview Paul, the visionary behind his namesake firm. Without further ado, lets take a look at some of the beautiful work of Paul Montgomery and hear all about the magnificence that they create.

Welcome Paul……

 

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?What are the biggest myths surrounding the use of chinoiserie and murals?

 

The biggest myths surrounding the use of Chinoiserie and murals are that they are too expensive, difficult to install, permanent and not removable, and that they are visual overkill or cheap looking. Most customers lack sophistication in this art form and seem to accept low quality work that I have found offered online and through artists directly. There was the same wave of bad quality that came out with the Faux Finish Craze. There were many classes offered and suddenly there were experts everywhere. The same is true with mural painting.

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But having nearly 45 years experience in the field and having had the opportunity to work with several of the world?s best artists, I feel confident that we can offer exemplary service. I also work closely with my former team members who have gone on to great maturity of ability and we often regroup for larger projects. The best result is when the artist most qualified in a certain area is allowed to lead that portion of the project. All of our team members work cohesively and without any ego involvement. This results in a high quality project. The process for mural painting is distinctively different than a smaller art piece. Again, lack of knowledge both from the artist and customer has created myths which we have successfully overcome in our projects.

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WHAT ROOM IS THE MOST POPULAR ROOM TO PUT CHINOISERIE PANELS IN?

 

?The Dining Room is usually the top priority, but due to budget constraints the Guest Powder Room becomes the ?show-off? space. It can be transformed into a jewel box with metal leaf background paper and lively or subdued coloration. Bedrooms become an oasis of calm. Dining Rooms become stimulating environments to enjoy another of our best experiences in life, which is dining.

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Do you have an all time most favorite design motif/colorway?

 

Nature will always be our favorite source of design inspiration. This is leaves, flowers, trees birds, vast landscapes and the whole of our planet?s beauty. Color spectrums are infinite and continually interesting. Every aspect of nature has and always will be studied, catalogued and used in the design of everything we encounter on a daily basis. Nature also utilizes geometry — the essential formula for balance and function. And of course our philosophy of universally intelligent creation humbles us and at once thrills us to be a part of the grand plan. What is behind nature is really what?s so amazing.

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MURALS IN CLUBHOUSE LOBBY AT THE COUNTRY CLUB OF FLORIDA IN BOYNTON BEACH.

 

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How about a dream client or dream home to grace your murals in?

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It doesn?t matter the name of the customer, as we have had our share of royalty and hollywood fame. But even the most un-famous can be more enjoyable than someone who is so successful that they have forgotten how to be human. So a good customer is a kind and thoughtful person who will appreciate our efforts and hopefully give us a long leash and generous budget to dedicate a serious amount of time in enhancing their environment. A large personality that is fun is a bonus.

A dream location is anywhere there is beauty and culture, with lots of good food and gorgeous views. Places like England, Australia and Italy are some of our favorite locations for our specialized on-site work, where we get to stay for a few weeks doing installations and painting on site. We have been approached for projects in many exotic locations such as Azerbaijan and Nigeria but we wouldn?t necessarily want to spend time there.

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I have enough of a difficult time when I visit China where I look forward to getting back to my upscale hotel very evening. But other locations have been delightful and wonderful life expanding adventures and I am very grateful for the opportunity to travel and to see these places. Actually, they are the highlights of my life.

I have always wanted to work on a project that is basically an empty shell of excellent architectural design, preferably Palladian in style. There we could design and paint the various sized and scaled sections on canvas in studio and apply at site. This italian dream home could be in Italy, California or anywhere there are good hotels or vacation rentals (again, part of the life experience). And with the total package being coordinated by a top designer with great vision for decorative painting, a good sized budget and plenty of time, we could create a living masterpiece.

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Are there any rules to keep in mind when considering using a mural or a grouping of chinoiserie panels?

Always share with us any information about location, sizes, room layout, furniture and fixtures and even lighting. These are all aspects we will consider when advising the best approach to using our wallpapers. It is also important to consider the point from where the mural will be viewed. A big mistake some folks make is trying to fit one of our Panoramics at floor height when the design is meant to be viewed from chair rail height and up. Communication and information are crucial. These are the essential ingredients to a successful application of our murals.

 

 

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If someone is on a budget (relatively speaking) how might they still be able to use a mural?

By breaking the design motif into sections within framed moldings on a wall, the actual amount of paper coverage can be reduced with similar impact as an entirely papered room. We gladly design elements that don?t look like they are simply chopped wallpaper pieces, but rather designed so that they fit areas perfectly without branches cut off, etc. We also offer the highest quality digital prints wallpaper panels through our sister website, www.decoratorarchives.com. They are the officially licensed outlet for the re-prints of some of our varied projects.
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But the colors and size cannot be adjusted with these and the customer has to use them appropriately. The quality is the best possible with today?s technology, the substrate paper is the finest from Magiclee (made specifically for wallpaper murals), and the high resolution results even show such details as the silk weave inherent in the original hand painted version. Metal leaf cannot successfully be copied, however. We have not considered printing on metal leaf papers we offer for the hand painting as it would require more toxic inks and be cost prohibitive to the customer.

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Are they mostly made on linen or silk? What do you advise? Are they all hand painted and can they be removed if the homeowner moves and wishes to take them with them? Is it an expensive upgrade?

 

?Our original murals are always painted to order by hand onto canvas, silk, metal leaf, non woven (excellent for commercial and also humid areas), pearlized silk which adds a lovely sheen, hand pieced paper done in the ancient tea paper effect, and also novel substrates such a vinyl, cork and modern and natural materials. ?Basically we can paint on almost anything, but we require a test sample first to determine its viability. Even if the effect is gorgeous, if the paint wipes right off, it?s a failure.

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What can you tell me about a tea stained finish? I saw it once at a friends home who bought a stately older home that had the most gorgeous antique paper that had been tea stained and I was never able to get it out of my mind!

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?The tea stained finish is just one of many effects we can apply to our papers. We utilize various techniques for achieving antique effects, crackles, aged, glimmer or super matte finishes. Some of these techniques involve unusual treatments, like leaving the paper in the elements to get actual moldy and sun bleached portions. Yes, it sounds crazy, but aging can actually be an aging process, much like a fine wine.

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Tell us a little about your company, your work speaks for itself. I would imagine you work all over the globe? What is your lead time and walk us through the process of how one begins a project if you don’t mind.

We have been in business for about 45 years as a professional business. Having started painting early in life it has just been a continuum of projects and experiences for me, both good and bad, but all learning adventures. We have had all types of customers worldwide, from Royalty to Diplomats, Celebrities, design icons, wanna-be decoristas and even the common housewife. They are all equally loved and get the same standards of treatment and attention. Their project is theoretically “our only project”. This insures the attention that is required for success. A beautiful project resulting in a happy customer is our goal (except for the occasional spoiler who is never happy, in which case we just take the money and run!).

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Production can average 8 weeks to complete because of on-going projects, and we try to afford the artists adequate time to execute the project. Sometimes more details or a specialized artist is required for certain projects and basically the more time we have the better. Some designers habitually cry for the rushed order, but this is often to the detriment of the quality, so we discourage rushed projects.

 

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They do this because of a habit to push the supplier. In our case, they should allow adequate time for a real artist to create a real work of art. We don?t just run magical painting machine 24 hours a d

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The process of creating our hand painted wallpapers starts with a designer considering the wall space and area to receive the mural. They should send us all pertinent information, especially of course the size desired. Basically all of the wallpaper types on anything other than canvas should be calculated as 36? wide panels x the desired wall height.
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Canvas can be up to about 9?6? at the widest portion, but these are very expensive applications and hand painted in our studio in Virginia. Some designers have sent us the entire wall height including baseboard and crown molding without considering deducting this portion from the overall useable wall area.
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The diagram arrived to them with the wrong wall height and this required that the diagram needed to be adjusted. A waste of time and money simply for not thinking. Consider only the useable wall area. Yes, doors can be covered as well. Please ask about this when ordering. No moldings should be used for this application.
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The panels are priced individually and the designer should add the running wall length, divide by 3? and multiply by the per-panel price. This will give them a good estimate of the price. Panels average about $750. per panel, designer net. Shipping is additional. There are many variables to consider regarding price, such as design complexity, size and substrate.

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Samples are created for a nominal fee of $190. for a 2?x 3′ size, including shipping. Prior to this process, the designer should send a few colors to match. This can be in fabrics or paint color numbers from leading paint companies like Benjamin Moore or Farrow and Ball. We emphasize “a few? colors, normally no more than 3 to 5.
The artists are experts and this type of artwork has been done for hundreds of years so there is no need to dictate exact colors for every area. Some designers go way overboard in specifying colors and this can lead to confusion and wasted efforts.
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The artwork should stand on its own and a slight difference in color or value should not be considered a disaster. A good designer will always make it work. Some designers become hypercritical, (a social ill in my opinion). The artists are humans working at our studio in Asia and lighting and so many factors can alter perception of the colors. I once heard a designer claim that we were completely wrong because the light in Chicago was different than ours and we should have considered this! No kidding!

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Further samples are charged per revision, etc. there is no credit for the samples, except for fabulously large projects. Samples take about 2-3 weeks for production.

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Also, for all you experts out there, daylight through windows is different than lighting from a chandelier at night. So colors will appear differently at different times of day. My advice to designers is to just relax and let these things be. It is a natural aspect and beyond your control. It?s certainly not worth discussing with your client. Be wise! And if your client brings it up, nip that in the bud immediately. Never be a ?yes man? (or woman, to be politically correct), but be the confident, honest, professional leader that you are. That?s why they hired you. And please consider that this is artwork, not a machine made product.

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We also create lovely diagrams in black and white line drawing that show the layout of the pattern within the interior space. We use client provided measurements and elevation drawings. It is not crucial to have an architectural draft of the elevation. Simple, but complete sketches with measurements will do. We?ll create the Diagram drawings in scale. All panels are numbered going left to right and are also marked on the backs of each panel. The installer simply follows the plan.
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And remember, a line drawing is just an approximation. Birds and such will be moved to avoid “birds without heads”, etc. Designer input is welcome. ?But let?s not over-analyze the layout. Diagrams take as little as a day or up to 2 weeks. A nominal fee is charged, starting at $150. but going as high as $1,200, depending upon the complexity of the design and time required to complete.
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We do offer customized design. The cost of this service is also calculated in the drafting time needed, but there is really no up-charge for the actual painting of the full order. For any custom work, samples and diagrams are required. Diagrams as well as samples are not credited toward the full order.

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In the full painting, branches and such may not be exactly like the diagram, and the hand painting inherently insures that branches and ground portions may not match up. Hire a local artist to do this touch-up or hire us to do the complete installation/supervision and touch-up service at a premium cost. We often install larger projects overseas as they need our attention.
We will, in some cases, give a $300 to $400 allowance for a local artist to touch-up, which in our experience, is sufficient for the task. This is only for larger projects of 10 or more panels upon strong evidence of the need and at request of the customer. Again, it?s hand painted. Billing is done by the artist and paid directly to the artist by us.

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Full production takes about 6-8 weeks normally. Sometimes less and sometimes more. We discourage rush orders. We receive all orders at our fulfillment center in Virginia and forward the order via Fedex to the delivery address provided. Shipping usually takes a few days. We encourage the shipment to be made fairly close to the installation date. Keep the box with wallpapers in a climate controlled environment. Don?t leave it out on the porch in the rain.
We may ask for photos of the completed project to include in our portfolio and to show-off on our website. ?We also look for those projects that can be good ?before and after? situations, if the designer will photograph the steps.
We have enjoyed wonderful relationships with many top designers and homeowners over the year and invite any enquiries.
Thanks for reading this and please feel free to contact us with any questions. ?There is no such a thing as a stupid question!
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Paul, many thanks for sharing your vast knowledge and keen insight into this incredible art form with us today, I can say with confidence that we all appreciate your taking the time to share with us your expertise and that this will be thoroughly enjoyed by many.
?I ate up every word Paul and took diligent notes, this was like the ultimate crash course of murals 101!
Click here to visit the world of Paul Montgomery and discuss the options of helping your mural dreams come to life! Be forewarned though, you will never look at ordinary wallpaper quite the same:)

 

Well that was quite an interview, wouldn?t you say? I wish I could put chinoiserie panels in every room of my house! And you can see they are so much more than chinoiserie and murals, they do it all?if you can dream it, they can do it, from scenes of a fox chase, to historic Italy and Provencal to spectacular English countryside landscapes, there are no limits to where their talented paintbrushes will take them.

 

Many thanks to everyone for stopping in and wishing everyone a wonderful day. Please if you missed my post on voting for Hadi yesterday, take a few seconds to do so?I promise it?s a most worthwhile cause!! Click here. And please spread the word….many thanks:)
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Michelle Clark on

Wow! Quite Informative! Thanks! MC

Anita Rivera on

Good glory, this is outstanding. Tina, you are on top of the designing world. Lovely murals and my favs are the gray and muted tones. Love!!!!? Anita

Lisa on

Tina,
This was one of the most enjoyable educational home decor posts! This is a favorite design element of mine and is a dream for my home. The previous owners of my home did a lovely job maintaining the integrity of it’s victorian origins however their taste in wallpaper is far from mine. I envision a mural in my dining room one day and a nature theme through my entire main hall.
What a delight reading this lengthy comprehensive post–thank you and thank you to Paul Montgomery and team!!
Fondly,
-Lisa

Karena on

Tina congratulations on having a sponsor so great as Paul Montgomery. These murals are so artfully done, one would never know they are not antique Chinese panels! Gorgeous work!

xoxo
Karena
The Arts by Karena

Barbara Kelly on

Tina
Just realized this is the answer for my dining room that has three large openings and is visual from the front entrance. The dining room can be seen
from all main rooms. This could be “eye candy” for every day.

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Regina on

Truly beautiful.
I really enjoyed this entry.

Peggy Braswell on

congratulations tina + what an interesting interview + love those panels + chinoiserie has always been a favorite of mine + these are wonderful. xxpeggybraswelldesign.com

Sandy @ you may be wandering on

Tina…Paul’s work is just stunning! I would love to have him do my powder room! And, I can’t wait to see your dining room when it is finished! Hope your week is going great! xoxo

Jeanne McKay Hartmann on

Tina, wow, such an education. The murals are just amazing works of art. If we ever update our power room (or move and start over) I would love to add some work by Paul. Just lovely.

Hope you are having a great week! XO

Wendy on

Paul’s work is beautiful. I’m looking forward to seeing your diningroom.

Debby Anderson on

His work is brilliant!! I am loving the second. What a fabulous sponsor. Congrats!! xo

Katie Clooney on

Tina… these rooms are positively beautiful! Great interview… Move over Katie Couric!!!

Suzanne on

I’ve always admired the
murals I’ve seen on tours
of antebellum homes in
the south….so gracious,
artful and refined! Thank
you for the in depth lesson
about this lovely art form!

xo Suzanne

Marsha @ Splenderosa on

Well, this just does it!!!
Now, I must move. I need this in my life & the current abode does not allow for this type of wall treatment, but OMG how I love it. Big huge congrats on having them as a sponsor. I am thrilled for you !!

Carolyn Bradford on

I am overwhelmed! What a beautiful and very informative post indeed! I couldn’t pick a favorite if I had to! Thanks so much for sharing this and I’m so happy for you that is a new sponsor! You couldn’t ask for any better! Have a great rest of your week!

classic ? casual ? home on

This was so interesting and educational and just plain beautiful to read.

[email protected] on

what a great education in murals, tina! loved seeing some of those ‘in process’ shots which help to understand how it comes together. i think my favorite murals are humble scandinavian ones and anything grisaille. i also love when there is humor thrown in. maybe a monkey thrown in for no good reason. smiles to you and your brilliant sponsor.

[email protected] and state on

fascinating read tina, thoroughly enjoyed the interview combined with rich lush art by a masterful artist.
of course you two were destined for each other, cream always resides on the top
debra

Elaine on

It’s been a long time since I have been in school but your post teach me something every time I read them. Great interview ! Thanks for the lesson.

susan on

Tina this was incredible. I was oohing and ahhing over every picture. We just moved to a new home in Atlanta so am considering this for my dining room, I think this post might have won my husband over who wasn’t sure.

Thank you for such a great source of information, it really is an art form to be appreciated and enjoyed. I have a feeling Paul and I might be talking one day in the future!

Bonnie on

Thank you for this wonderful educational posts with so many gorgeous visuals. Mr Montgomery is certainly a treasure.

Pretty Pink Tulips on

Jaw. Dropping.

I am a huge chinoiserie fan and to have it customized in this fashion would be a dream come true.

A perfect match for your brand!!! Congrats, Tina!
xoxo Elizabeth

victoria on

Tina we bought an old home that had it in the foyer, we had to restore a part of it, worth every dime as it is the focal point upon entering our home.

Now I want it for our dining room, saving up my money to hopefully get this done as a spring project. I am so impressed with the work of Paul Montgomery and will certainly be keeping them in mind when I am ready. What beautiful work and his passion and love for what he does is so evident.

anne on

Tina I am familiar with his companies work as my in laws used them years ago and I will never forget how beautiful it was when they finished, we visited them for Thanksgiving and I just remember walking in and being stunned by how much it changed the space and how beautiful it looked.

I cannot wait to see your dining room. All of the examples shown are breathtakingly beautiful and make me want to do a dining room makeover today!

franki on

Breathless!! Priceless!! franki

Cher on

Tina,
Thank you for the mural education. Paul’s work is absolutely beautiful and his 45 years of experience was evident in his responses. So enjoyed this post!

Anonymous on

What a great post Tina, I can’t wait to see your completed dining room.

Shery G. on

I really enjoyed this post, such wonderful work.

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