Friday, March 30, 2012

Feature Friday: The Thonet Chair

Greetings readers! Our guest feature today is transatlantic! One of our favorite customers Nik from Austria shares her photos of a gorgeous bentwood Thonet chair she rehabbed. The wood was carefully cleaned, sanded, and waxed to bring back the original luster.

This style chair, called The Coffee Shop chair, was awarded a gold medal at the 1867 World's Fair when cabinet maker Michael Thonet designed it. The style is timeless.

Nik recovered the cushion in vintage linen and used one of our stencils to create a completely one of a kind piece of furniture that speaks to both Austrian and French culture.

She edged the cushion with some natural rope for a rustic feel that would suit a country cottage or shabby chic living space.

Nik's work is just stunning. You can check out her blog here or her fabulous Etsy shop, Linen And Wood here.
Here's the link for the Thonet chair on Etsy.

The stencil used is Hotel De L'Avenir which can be found here.

Thanks for reading, Happy Friday!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Etspiration Wednesday: Keep Calm

If you spend any amount of time on Pinterest or Etsy, you've seen them. Those big bold letters assuring you that you should Keep Calm and Carry On. The original poster, rediscovered in 2000 after languishing in semi-obscurity for decades, was intended to be a morale booster for British citizens during WW2.

Now the image is ubiquitous and applied to any and every niche market possible. Here at Maisondestencils, we love its simplicity and directness. We love how iconic the look is. Have a gander at some of our favorite Keep Calm inspired items from all over Etsy.

1A: Keep Calm and Stay Awhile Stencil Image Courtesy
1B: Keep Calm and Carry On Pillow Image Courtesy IconicPillows
1C: Keep Calm, You're Thirty Tags Image Courtesy Amaretto

How great are those tags in image 1C? Amaretto has a bunch of cool tags for different occasions in her etsy shop.

2A: Keep Calm Wooden Sign Image Courtesy OhDierLiving
2B: Keep Calm and Say I Do Bucket Image Courtesy ASouthernBucket
2C: Keep Calm and Obey Kitty Stencil Image Courtesy

I'm in love with 2A. The aged feel of the wood, the fun, handwritten look of the script. Just perfect!

3A: Keep Calm and Welcome To Our Nest Stencil Image Courtesy
3B: Keep Calm and Put a Bird On It Print Image Courtesy BlueSoulDesigns
3C: Keep Calm Eye Chart Tote Image Courtesy TakeFlightBoutique

I love the television show Portlandia. That's the inspiration for 3B. Oregon is its own special little slice of weird. And I can say that because I live here.

4A: Keep Calm and Dream On Pillow Image Courtesy JoshuaByOak
4B: Keep Calm and Carry On Bracelet Image Courtesy Cuffingtons
4C: Keep Calm and Carry On Stencil Image Courtesy

JoshuaByOak (image 4A) has terrific pillows in her etsy shop. We could have featured her last week for the typography spread in a myriad of different ways!

Thanks to our lovely contributors for allowing use of their images.
See you Friday!

Friday, March 23, 2012

Feature Friday: O Holy Night Tree Skirt

Do crafters have maxims? "When in doubt, you will run out of that color paint." You know, the one you really needed. "Take 100 pictures. Because your flash was slow in 50 of them, your hand was unsteady in the next 25, and your cat was on a tear in the last 25." Okay maybe this one is just me. :)

Here's one that I know for sure is true, particularly for our business, where we supply crafters. It's never too early to think about Christmas. Life gets in the way and it's always great to have a store of unique, spectacular items for the holidays.

Our second guest feature showcases Laurie Blaswich of Bella Inspirations' wonderful matelasse tree skirt.

She took this beautiful off white matelasse fabric and made a tree skirt with it. She then tea stained the border for a perfectly tinted aged look and used a custom stencil from Laura's shop to add the words "O Holy Night." Hand threaded moss green ribbon ties the whole look together perfectly.

Also created for the same photo shoot was this gorgeous bed pillow with the words, "O Holy Night, The Stars are Brightly Shining." The staging for the room was absolutely superb.

Aren't the tree trimmings gorgeous as well? The skirt and other items were featured in Better Homes and Garden's special Christmas Ideas issue.

You can check out Bella Inspirations' original post here. She also sells on Etsy. Here's a link to her shop.

The stencil used was a custom. But we have several other similar stencils in our Holiday section.

Thank you to Bella Inspirations for use of her images.

Happy Friday!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Giveaway Winners!

Drumroll Please!

We have three wonderful winners for our stencil giveaway.

Lisa Ard, Robin de Koning, and Stephanie from Southern Charm Cottage. Check your email ladies!

Thank you all so very much for becoming followers of our blog and the lovely comments. I know a few of you had trouble joining the site. I'll be putting together a walkthrough for those of you who are new to Blogger. We also tweet (albeit infrequently) @Maisondestencil and I'll announce our upcoming posts that way as well.

Tune in tomorrow for another great guest feature! Thanks again for all the wonderful comments!

Etspiration Wednesday: The Subway Roll

A picture is worth a thousand words. As it turns out, the opposite is darn true as well. Words are powerful. We love the ideas they inspire. We love their shapes (self confessed font nerd). We love the images they conjure. Words are art.

So the subway roll is a big trend right now and it's blossomed from a mere laundry list of locales to well, anything. Make a subway roll about your favorite wines. Make a subway roll about your hobby. Your life. Your kids.

Here's a salute to some great examples of using words as art.

1A: Paris Sign Image Courtesy PamelaJoyceDesigns
1B: Eat More Cake Pillow Image Courtesy SewEnglish
1C: Life The Life You've Imagined Stencil Image Courtesy
1D: You Is Kind Canvas Image Courtesy EpiphanysCorner

Have you seen (or read) The Help yet? That's what image 1D is from. If you haven't seen it, do not stop, do not pass go, do not collect 200 dollars and go rent it now. So great!

2ABC: West Village Sign Image Courtesy

This image is a custom Laura made for her boyfriend. He grew up in the West Village and she incorporated different elements of his life, his school, his address, his favorite bars into a typographic life story. We do customs all the time if you are interested in making something like this.

3A: Life is Beautyfull Chair Image Courtesy Urban Farmgirl
3B: May The Odds Be Ever In Your Favor Sign Image Courtesy PamelaJoyceDesigns
3C: Night Owl Pillow Image Courtesy SewEnglish
3D: Music Gives A Soul To The Universe Sign via Pinterest

The minute I saw 3B I knew I had to include it. I am a Hunger Games fanatic and this is a quote from the book. The movie adaptation comes out today but I can't see it for two weeks since we promised my sister-in-law we'd see it with her when we go on vacation. I have deleted my bookmarks to Entertainment Weekly and Facebook. I will not have any details spoiled! I think I'll covet this awesome sign instead!

4A: Start Being Awesome Sign Image Courtesy House of Hepworths
4B: Subway Sign Dresser Image Courtesy Lindauer Designs
4C: Peace Love Rock & Roll Stencil Image Courtesy

So I just love the quote from 4A. I didn't even realize that it was a quote from How I Met Your Mother until I went to get image permissions from the seller. Upon reflection, it is exactly something Barney Stinson would say. I wonder if there are rubber wrist bracelets that say "What Would Barney Do?"

5A: You Are My Sunshine Stencil Image Courtesy
5B: I Love You Blogs and Coffee Print Image Courtesy Jennifer Ramos
5C: Subway Sign Chair via Pinterest

5B is my current mantra!

6A: Be Thankful Sign Image Courtesy Lilblueboo
6B: Mr. & Mrs. Pillow Image Courtesy SewEnglish
6C: Rock Bottom Stencil Image Courtesy

Can you tell we have an obsession with SewEnglish? Her pillows are so fun, fresh, and ahem, slightly cheeky. Check out her Etsy shop to see what we mean. :D

Many thanks to all our willing collection participants. This was a ton of fun to put together.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Feature Friday: The Galvanized Garden Bucket

Laura's stencils are a fab way to personalize your home interior, but they're also awesome for dressing up the great outdoors as well!

Our first guest feature showcases My Sweet Savannah's wonderful galvanized planter.

She upcycled a planter from a neighbor by using one of the designs from our feedsack stencils category to create something completely unique for flowers in her garden.

Isn't her landscaping beautiful? I (Lisa) live out on the Oregon Coast and I swear, my backyard looks like Jurassic Park with huge ferns everywhere. There may also be dinosaurs. That's how overgrown it is!

You can check out My Sweet Savannah's original post here.

The stencil used is Lucas Moller German Feedsack 12x12, found here.

Thank you to My Sweet Savannah for use of her images.

Happy Friday!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

New Blog Giveaway!

Greetings readers!

In celebration of the start of our new blog, we'd like to offer you a chance to win 3 free 12x12 stencils of your choosing. To qualify for this giveaway, simply become a follower of our blog and make a comment on this post. 3 lucky followers will be selected to receive free stencils. Please leave your email address in your comment so we can contact you if you win.

The winners will be announced Thursday, March 22nd.

To check out our stencils, please visit the store.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Etspiration Wednesday: UK Room

One of our goals with the Maisondestencils blog is to showcase what we love in design and how you can incorporate Laura's stencils into those trends. We've got Union Jack fever right now, so here's a little tour ala Diptic of some UK inspired items from Etsy that we heart. We've paired Laura's stencils where we think they'd go well.

Keep Calm and Decorate!

1A: Big Ben and the Underground Image courtesy OfNatureDesigns

1B: Great Britain Stencil Image Courtesy

1C: Vintage Wooden Stamp Blocks Image Courtesy HauteBlooded

1D: London Subway Roll Image Courtesy Designomite

2A: Union Jack Footstool Image Courtesy TuffetWhimsy

2B: Burlap Crown Pillow Image Courtesy

2C: Union Jack Lavender Heart Image Courtesy TheTradingBarn

2D: Keep Calm and Carry On Stencil Image Courtesy

3A: Commoner Stencil Image Courtesy

3B: Shabby Chic Wall Sconces Image Courtesy MollyFinds

3C: Irish Linen Tea Towel Image Courtesy Deansy

3D: Union Jack Pillow Image Courtesy Helkatdesign

4A: Union Jack Bunting Image Courtesy Hoolala

4B: Vintage Wall Shelf Image Courtesy EdenCoveTreasures

4C: Union Jack Door Print Image Courtesy BarrysGallery

4D: Union Jack Crown Pillow Image Courtesy Helkatdesign

5A: Union Jack Tea Cosy Image Courtesy BringMeSunshine7

5B: Antique Tea Canister Image Courtesy FarmhouseRustic

5C: Union Jack Dresser Image Courtesy Artisan8

5D: Vintage Welsh Blanket Image Courtesy JaneBeckWelshBlanket

Friday, March 9, 2012

Feature Friday: The Growth Chart

A little back story: Hi, I'm Lisa. Many of you know my older sister Laura, who runs Maisondestencils. For years she has been telling me that she wants to have a blog, but the business keeps her too busy. I found out the fall previous that I was going to have my first child, so what better time to embark on a new project for her, right? Babies aren't a lot of work or anything. Nope! :) So we're going to be working on this blog together, sharing what we love in design.

Anyway, when I found out I was having a baby, I immediately started thinking themes for the nursery. I decided I wanted a woodlands type theme with foxes and owls. I thought the perfect piece to cap off the room would be a custom growth chart to match the room using Laura's stencils. I wanted a fox and an owl, the ruler bit would be in a tall tree, and at the top it would say, "Mighty Oaks From Little Acorns Grow."

Perfect. I drew up all the shapes in Adobe Illustrator, emailed it to her, and thought we'd have something great worked up in a week or so. That was in February 2011.

Well life got in the way! I finished the nursery and left a lonely little blank wall for the growth chart. Then June rolled around and I had the baby, my wonderful little boy, Graham.

Seasons changed, Graham got bigger and bigger, and still no growth chart. Finally in February of this year, Laura came to visit us in Oregon. She brought all kinds of treats for Graham, but the icing on the cake had to be the stencils for the growth chart. They were huge. And layered. And numerous. Totally daunting.

As Laura said to me while dragging the stencils all out of her suitcase, "Stenciling is easy. What you designed just happened to be complicated. Now aren't you glad I'm here?"

I was! Over the next few days, she showed me how to stencil and we finished the growth chart together. Here are our process pics:

We started with a large piece of laminated pine. You can find this at Home Depot, Lowes, any home improvement warehouse. Watch out for warping. Next step was painting the pine a light taupe color. Save some money by using regular indoor paint for this. Otherwise, that would be a fortune in Folk Art craft paint.

The next step was to get the bulk of the color on, the brown for the tree and text. One of the issues here was I selected a very thin typeface, so later we added in another color to make the text pop more.

Here's a shot showing the color applied to the stencil. Always tape your stencil down with painter's tape. Those extra little blue bits of tape are where I marked the color of the leaves. That shows you how left brain I am. I had to match the color to my design. Laura laughed at me for that. :) We are total opposites in many ways. The great thing about Folk Art paint is it dries very quickly, so we were able to move around the stencil and work on different things without much worry about smudging.

We didn't actually buy three different shades of green. We just tinted our original shade of green for the leaves with a little taupe to get a nice gradation.

Here you can see the blue leaves and the finished owl. We sent my colorblind husband out for the blue paint. I can't remember what we were doing that we had to stay home. He read off paint colors at Jo-Anns on the phone to me while I looked on their website. Too funny!

For hanging purposes, we decided against the sawtooth hangers pictures normally have. This is a heavy piece of wood and I just didn't want any chance of it falling in a nursery. So I ordered a keyhole router bit. Here you can see the backside of the wood clamped down before routering.

The bit just pops on the router and you plunge down and push upwards. It's that simple.

What it does is creates a channel with a narrow top where the screw head can rest without any chance of the wood slipping off of it. You always want to plunge down and push up, otherwise your screw head will just sit on the open part.

Here's a pic so you can see what I mean.

Here's our happy little growth chart hanging in its rightful spot in Graham's nursery. If it seems a little crooked, that's my elderly, leaning house, thank you very much.

Graham loves the growth chart. He stood up like a big boy next to it to get his first measurement. It doesn't hurt that he recognizes what foxes and owls are by this point and thinks they are pretty swell!

All in all, my first stenciling project was a great success. I learned a ton and had a great time doing it. Just like I hope you will with our blog.

Happy reading and let's make our worlds beautiful.