Thursday, September 5, 2013

Website Wednesday: Our Latest Adventure

Hey Readers,

Wow!  We have had a whirlwind month here at Maison.  Wholesale business is jamming and our retail customers are more excited about stenciling than ever.  We are so lucky to have such enthusiastic clients. 

Just in case you're not on the mailing list and not on our Facebook feed, we thought we'd broadcast our latest news here on the blog as well.

We are proud to present our newest line of stencils, Les Enfants Stencils.  Les Enfants is our own special line of childrens' stencils.  This product is perfect for decorating nurseries or themed rooms.  We also have tons of customization options, with more on the way.  

Because I have two little kids, I am always thinking of ways I can use stencils in their rooms.  Graham, my older boy, has a woodland themed room, so he's got all kinds of deer, foxes, and the like.   Teddy, my new little one, well poor guy, his nursery isn't even done (he's only 5 months old!).  But since his name sake is both one of our most awesome presidents and the teddy bear, my plan is do an accent wall that has one of my favorite quotes by Mr. Roosevelt himself and have various bears around the room.

We're offering 20% off your first purchase at Les Enfants, now through September 8th with promo code welcome (all lowercase).  We're always looking for great ideas for kids' stencils too.  So if you've got a great concept you want made for a custom or just an idea for us to put in the store, email us at info@lesenfantsstencils.com.

We've done all kinds of awesome themed subways based on popular choices for kids' rooms.  Check them out!




 These two are from our Western category.  



The Knights of the Round Table subway is from Fantasies, the Baseball nicknames is from Sports.  Love that one!  Some of our stencils would be great for a man cave as well!

Hope you all are doing well and beating the heat.  Bring on Halloween, I am ready for fall!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Website Wednesday: Stencils to Fit any Budget!

Howdy all.

Do you ever wonder where your stencils come from?  And the circumstances surrounding their creation?  I'm sure that's all you ever think about, right? 

 You've probably imagined this amazing Maisondestencils factory run by well mannered elves on leave from creating Christmas toys.  Sadly, this is not the case.  We, (by we I mean our powerhouse staff of four) create all the stencils in-house with love and lots of coffee. 

So check this:  my oldest fell asleep in his room in the house and I have my new baby in a bouncer out in the garage (I know, mother of the year right?).  I am checking on my older boy via webcam (God bless technology) when the new baby falls asleep in the garage!   So little Theo and I are packing orders out here (I seem to be doing most of the work...) and I decided I'd take a break to tell you about another cool feature you can use at the new website.


Sometimes, you do not have a million dollars to spend on stencils.  We totally get it.  Maybe things are tight and you know that you have $25 you want to spend on a stencil, but you're really not sure what all you can get for that.  The good news is you can do exactly that on the new site.  Check it out.

Let's say you want to buy a new stencil in our Holiday category.

If you check out the bottom left, you will see a slider bar under the word Catalog.





That slider bar controls the price of the products displayed.  So you can slide it to the left to limit your results.  I slid mine to the left and set it to $24.83.  113 results, that's a whole lot of stencils you can still buy for under $25!!

That's all for now, stay tuned for more fun Feature Fridays and Website Wednesday additions.
 

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Website Wednesday: Top Sellers

Howdy there stencil folk!

We're in our 2nd week of use with the new website and so far the feedback has been awesome.  We're still not done implementing changes, but I thought I would take some time a couple days per month and highlight some of the great features our new site has. 

Our entire goal with this site is to make it easier for you, the end user, to search our catalog.  We have A LOT of stencil designs (over 1000), and it is super interesting to see what draws people to our site.  As you may have surmised, "french stencil" is one of our top keywords, but every so often I see something wild and different that gets me on a whole new design track.  

An interesting thing to note is that in addition to specific keyword searches, one question we get all the time is, "What are your best sellers?"  This is a great question that our retailers and resellers often ask.  It's smart too because you guys all have great taste, so why not look at what other people are buying.  If you are in a retail environment, you want to select stencils that your customer base will like, and that can be a difficult task when looking at our catalog of 1000+ items.  (FYI, all our designs sell, anything that's not selling over time we cull from the catalog.)

So our new website has a link where you can see just that. 

Down on the bottom panel, there is a link that says "Top Sellers."  Here's a screenshot to illustrate.


 When you click that top sellers link, you are taken to a page that lists our best selling stencils, one after the other.  This list recalculates on the fly, so if we say, had a run on Union Jacks a week from now, the Union Jack stencil would move forward until it's near the front of this list.

This list is also only capturing data from the start of the new site, so it hasn't quite balanced what our perennial best sellers are.  In case you are wondering, Bee Crown Laurel 12x12 and Old World Style 1 Numbers are our two best selling stencils.  (Don't tell anyone I told you!).

I should be back next week with an awesome Feature Friday.  Until then, Au Revoir! 

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

12x12 Stencil Giveaway! Click for details! Exciting News! Exclamation Points Abound!

Wow!  We are excited round these here parts.

Let me tell you why!

We are launching a brand new website!  Woohoo!



Here is a sneak peek.  We want to thank the marvelous folks at Goodsie for being our training wheels for a year.  They handled some tremendous growth from us with ease.  But we have some amazing wholesale retailers and we knew we needed a better solution to handle ordering for the wholesale side of our business.

So we are very excited to announce that our new website will have user accounts!

What does that mean for you? 

  • You can save multiple addresses (We have lots of customers who have homes in both Canada and the US). 
  • You can look at your order history
  • Wholesale orders can be processed through our website 
  • You can save products for later
  • You can enter names and dates for custom stencils right on the website (I love this one!)
There are a ton more features, that's just a small snippet of the things we love about the new maisondestencils.  We hope you will too.  Our new site will be up by the end of the week.  So keep your eyes peeled for a fresh new look.

ONTO THE FREEBIES!

To celebrate this launch, we're giving away a free 12x12 stencil to 4 lucky readers. 

Check out this link to enter. 

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Feature Friday: Steptoe and Daughter Mirrors

I am early this week!  Don't ask me how, but I am sitting here and writing a blog post for you all.  I've been meaning to show you folks this feature for a while by the wonderful folks at Steptoe and Daughter.  Bonus, this one's from the land down under!

Stenciling on mirrors!






How great does that look?  The black pops so well against mirror background. 

And it's as simple as it seems, spray paint on a mirror tile.  Even I could pull this one off.

She mixed and match elements from two stencils, Bird with Crown (this looks like our 6x6 size) and Family and Friends 12x18.

She also did another great project with a few more steps.  Check it out.



So what she did here is take a pane of glass and spray paint it with vinegar and water. 

She then painted the entire pane with aluminum colored paint. 

FYI, paint will not adhere to vinegar. 

She then wiped the surface to remove the vinegar for aging. 

She also dabbed with turpentine (this is definitely a garage or outside project) for more aging. 

Finally, she painted our stencil with flat black spray paint.

Too cool!

Check out Steptoe and Daughter on Facebook for more amazing work.  You'll spy our stencils in other projects as well.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Feature Friday: Tuckerized Chalk Paint Chairs

I can't seem to get my Feature Fridays in on time.  Probably a combination of new baby, moving,(California here we come, right back where we started from) and some very exciting behind the scenes stuff here at Maison we'll be debuting soon.

Before I begin:  We're running a sale for Memorial Day weekend.  Save 20% with promo code mem2013.  Now through Monday!  Onto the feature!

I'm taking a much needed break from the chaos to show you this transformation.  It is amazing.  I want to stop everything I'm doing and try it out right now.  I have a lot of willpower, but I am crumbling. 

I present to you:  Chalk Paint Chairs, courtesy of Dana and Brooks Tucker. 


No, they didn't just refinish the arms and legs with Annie Sloan Chalk Paint.  They painted the chair fabric itself. 

Their method was informed by this blogpost over at Hyphen Interiors.  The short of it is:  They misted the chairs with straight water thoroughly.  Then they took a 50% mix of Annie Sloan Paris Grey and Water and painted the fabric.






They repeated this process a total of 3 times to get a finished coat that looks like this.





Then they painted a nice feedsack stripe on both the back and seat. 





It actually looks great just like this, but they put our lovely Jonas Schroder stencil on the seatback as well.  The result is marvelous.





The also rehabbed another chair, same way, using our Family and Friends simple stencil.  This one we ran as a freebie about six months ago.  We'll be adding it for purchase soon!



These came out so, SO great!  If you want to check out the Tucker's more in depth post, please click here.  Here's a link to their main website, they do amazing faux painting work. 


Sunday, April 28, 2013

Perhaps you've seen us lately!

So picture this:

As many of you know, I had a baby 2 weeks ago.  I am just getting back into the swing of things and my mother-in-law is visiting.  One evening, she was taking care of the new little one and my husband had just brought home burgers for dinner.

I had a rare moment to myself and I was scarfing down this insanely good cheeseburger (shout out to Custard King in Astoria) at our breakfast nook in the kitchen.  We order quite a few magazines for design ideas and the latest issue of Country Living had arrived.  So I decided I would flip thru the magazine while eating.

It's all pretty typical as far as magazine reading goes (you should totally pick up this issue for the Bargain finds, they are to die for this month) until I get to page 100 for an article entitled, "Building Character."

This spread is all about the home of Heather Salazar, who did a bang up job adding vintage charm to a newer build tract home.

As I was reading the article and looking at her design style, I found myself thinking, "She has really good taste!"

Then I got to page 104 and realized that she had excellent taste!



Does the anything about that very cool clock look familiar?  Why I do believe that is Lucas Moller in Gottingen, one of our most popular feedsack stencils!

You can only imagine how surprising it is to open a magazine and see your own work inside!   I called Laura immediately and the conversation went roughly like this:

"HAVE YOU READ THE NEW COUNTRY LIVING?!"
"Yes...."
"DID YOU NOTICE ANYTHING AMAZING?"
"I like all the chalkboard stuff?"  (It's true, we're in love with this right now.)
"IT'S MORE AMAZING THAN CHALKBOARD."
"I don't think we're talking about the same issue?"
"OMG JUST TURN TO PAGE 104!!!1"
"Holy ****!  That's our stencil!"


So thanks to Country Living and Heather Salazar.  I don't think we're credited anywhere in the issue, but it's fun to see our work out in the wild. 

If you want to make your own Lucas Moller giant clock to Flava Flav your own wall, look no further than our Feedsack category. 

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Feature Friday: The Paris Dresser

Okay, another late Friday post!

I've been meaning to show this transformation by Jeanne Palmer for a few weeks now.

She does amazing work.  Check out this armoire. 



I'll take one of these in my living room, stat!  Here's what the before looked like:






Nothing special.  Good bones though!  She had to strip the original paint, which was oil based.  No fun! 



Then she added the wooden gingerbread to the doors.  I like the depth they add.  She finished the whole piece of in Annie Sloan Paris Grey. 



Then she used our Paris Rue Henri stencil underneath the gingerbread on each door.  I just love the way this one turned out.   I love the door hardware too.  Perfect!

If you're interested in Paris Rue Henri, we offer it as a 12x12 in our French category.   It's a customer favorite. 

You should absolutely check out Jeanne's Facebook page, Cottage Chic Furniture.  She does before and afters of all all her transformations.  Really great stuff. 

Should be back with another stellar feature this Friday, if I can get my act together!  We're also running another sale on all our new stencils this week.  Keep your eyes peeled for an email reminder.  If you're not on our email mailing list, drop us a line at maisondestencilsinfo@yahoo.com and we'll get you added.

Au revoir!

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Feature Friday: Annie Sloan Chalk Paint Books

Technically it's Saturday, but it's been that kind of week.  :)

I just had to share with you guys, the lovely ladies at Annie Sloan Unfolded are using our stencils. 

Their most recent post highlights how you can use stencils and Annie Sloan products to create amazing antiqued books that look like they time traveled from the days of Gutenberg.  Gorgeous stuff. 



Debbie Dion Hayes did these books and I must say, they are stunning!

Also I learned from this blog post that Annie Sloan is making fabric now.  Like I needed another amazing product to spend $$ on!

So the process here is that you get a book, Goodwill would be a treasure trove for this.

Paint the book with Annie Sloan Graphite (2 coats), let dry.

Stencil with Annie Sloan Old White.  As far as I can tell, the stencils used here are Ave Des Champs Elysees SKU 551 - Chateau Gothic SKU 705 - Marche Aux Puces SKU 641.

Wax with Clear Soft Wax and Buff, Wax with Dark Soft Wax and Buff.

Dip a finger with Silver Gilding Cream and run along book edges.






I think the Gilding Cream is really what takes it to the next level.  These just look amazing.

Also, if you're considering becoming an Annie Sloan stockist, you get to use our stencils in your training class.  How cool is that?! 

All the stencils used in this project can be found in our French category. 

If you want to check out the original post, look no further than Annie Sloan Unfolded

Have a lovely weekend.  It's grey here, but not currently raining and we're supposed to have a 48 hour stretch of no rain.  Thus begins the eternal dilemma for Coastal Oregonians, do I paint or not paint?  The winter here is rough on a house, I repaint our porch and sills every spring. 

My little boy has been standing at the window and staring this morning so maybe we'll just go for a walk!  :)

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Stencils Are Like Donut Holes

They are, trust me.  Delicious little confections, donut holes!  Are they really the leftover dough?  Probably not, but I like to think that every part of the donut is being used.

Have you ever thought about what happens to all the stuff we cut out of our stencils?  Where does it go?  Say you buy a fleur de lis stencil.  You essentially receive a square sheet with a fleur de lis cut out of it.  Which means that here in stencil production land, we have a fleur de lis donut hole.  A leftover part.  We cut a LOT of stencils every day, so we have lots of these donut holes.

I hear you asking, what do you do with all those little bits?

Well, we recycle a lot of the boring stuff.   In a perfect world, I would collect every letter and have a bin where all the like letters could go and if you wanted, I could send you a big bag of Es or a giant tub of Rs.  I think that'd be neat.  But please, I have a 2 year old.  I'm lucky if I get to vacuum and get my teeth brushed!

My confession is that I save all the neat stuff.  All our animals, our crowns, big chairs and chandeliers.  We have these wonderful neighbors next door and one of our neighbors works at the local shoe store, Gimres.  (Do visit if you live in Oregon, it's the oldest shoe store in the Western US and has wonderful shoes).  Gary, our shoe selling neighbor, has taken a lot of our floral bits to use in displays.



I think we need a stencil with a shoe graphic so we'll have leftover shoe bits for his next display!






A lot of my stencil donut holes I save to ambush my husband's office.  We had a run on Easter stencils this past month, and rabbits multiplied all over his desk over night!  



Special shout out to Embellish and Restore - who bought a few of our small horse graphics set recently.  I corralled those wild stallions to hang out on my husband's laptop today.   Whoa Nelly!

Hope you all are doing well!  We're busy busy with sales and I try to post every so often.  Keep sending in those pictures of your finished products, we'll get to them all in due time.  I've got a great project on deck for Friday.

All the best!

Friday, March 8, 2013

Feature Friday: Monika Wagner

Guten Tag und Gl├╝cklicher Freitag (that last bit means Happy Friday!)

We just had to share a fabulous set of stenciled things from one of our lovely German crafters, Monika Wagner.  She's got a Dawanda shop, which is basically like German Etsy, as far as I can tell.

Look at the treasures:


Pinboard using our Musee D'Orsay Address Stencil


Our Simple Family and Friends Stencil on a Leather Satchel


Key Collector with our Chateau Villandry Stencil


How great are these?  I love the satchel and I never would have thought to stencil on that!  She also has a bunch of amazing found objects, you should absolutely pop on over and check them out.

Thanks to Monika for letting us feature her wares!

Keep your eyes peeled for a promo code coming up this weekend.  We'll advertise it on our Facebook and Twitter as well.

Take care!

Friday, February 15, 2013

Feature Friday: The Typewriter Case

Happy Friday!

FYI:  30% off all stencils now through Wed, Feb 20 with promo code president2013.

This is such a unique feature, just had to share with you guys.

Betsy at My Salvaged Treasures took our "Family and Friends Gather Here" 12x12 Stencil and applied it to a vintage typewriter case. 






How gorgeous is that?  She also did a companion case with stencils from another source.  I love the little keys she added for extra decoration.

Here's the layout before she got started.  Good opportunity to show what our packaging looks like if you're not familiar.  All our normal sized (12x12, 5.5x11.5, 8x8, 12x18) stencils come packed in clear cellophane sleeves with backing.  If you get a large stencil like our 24x24 or 6x24 stencils, those will come wrapped in tissue and arrive in a tube.





 Great picture illustrating the amount of paint she used.  I've said it before, I'll say it again.   A little paint goes a long way and you can always add more! 







The peel-away.  No bleeding underneath the stencil and this is a rough surface.  I've been talking with one client recently who was concerned that the stucco texture on her walls might cause some bleed with stencils, which is definitely a legitimate thing to be worried about.  We sent out samples for her to test in an unconspicious area, but seeing that this bumpy typewriter case took paint beautifully leads me to believe she'll be in the pink.  Or white.  Or whatever color she chooses to paint!  :)




Family and Friends Gather Here is an incredibly popular stencil, we offer it in 2 varieties in 12x12, and one in 12x18.  We also have a Family and Friends simple that we ran a free promotion with a few months back.  We will be adding that for sale shortly.

If you'd like to check out the Family and Friends Family (not redundant at all!)  have a peek at our French category.

Thanks to Betsy at My Salvaged Treasures for showcasing her beautiful work featuring our product on her blog.  We're also going to be running a giveaway with her soon, so keep your eyes peeled.

Have a great weekend!

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Feature Friday: The Red Piano Bench

Well Readers, it has been a goodly long while since posting.

Our holiday season was jamming, we've run a few great sales, and my NYR (It's only Feb right, still counts) is to blog more.

Hope you had wonderful holidays and your NYR is to stencil more because I have an awesome inspiration post for you!

One of our favorite clients, LittleMissMaggie, took a dinged up flea market find piano bench, and gave it a swell French look.







How great is that color?  I love deep, true reds.  This is the same color as our front door and it makes me happy every time I see it.  It's just cheerful and bold! 



She used our ever popular Hotel De L'Avenir stencil for the center.  We offer this in a 12x12 and 12x18.  For paint choice, she used Rustoleum Colonial Red for the base and then a Miniwax Jacobean stain on top.  Gives a wonderful aged look.  The stenciling is done in off white acrylic.





And then, get this, she masked off the stripes.  I know that doesn't seem like a big deal, but I am so, so bad at stuff like that.  If you too are bad at you know, painting straight lines, we offer a feedsack stripe stencil for just this purpose!  But props to Maggie for doing it freehand.

Check out the original post here
And here's a link to her entire blog, it's full of great stuff! 

If you want to check out Hotel De L'Avenir, look no further than our French Category
If you're interested in the stripe stencil, take a gander at our Feedsack Category

Going to try, try, try to be more regular with our feature posts.  We've had so many awesome folks share projects that I've got a whole year's worth of content just waiting for me. 

Catch you next week!