Gold applied to a wall, a ceiling, or picking out a bead in a moulding has a very powerful visual impact.  It can be seen as a vulgar display of wealth, but used judiciously as in this treatment of a cornice next to an oriental dragon wallpaper it is delightful and distinctive.  Another treatment can be seen where I have applied it to a bead on a door painted in faux walnut. With polished brass antique door furniture, it adds grace and drama. Oil gilding is a means of applying gold leaf to a surface using size to fix it.  It is a stronger and more durable technique than alternative gilding methods and dramatically different to painting in gold paint.

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A very traditional decorative technique, marbling has long been out of fashion, but in small areas I think it adds a note of sophistication to a simple scheme as with the illustrated architrave in this bedroom. Often, a mantlepiece will be made of wood to reduce cost, and with a delicate marble treatment it can be transformed into the more deserving focal point of a room.

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Trompe L'Oeil - Faux Bois

"Faux bois" which translates as false wood, is a useful tool to transform a simple paneled door into a precious hardwood with the ingenious application of paint. I have in this illustration made an 18th Century pitch pine drawing room door into an exquisite walnut door.  In another illustration you will see the newel post of the bannister has been given mahogany treatment to match the bannister rail. 



Stippling is a means of adding different tones and hues to a base colour.  In this illustration the base is an off white with an amber glaze delicately layered over the top and the added depth and interest does not distract from a subtle overall scheme. Should the scheme require enlivening this can be achieved by increasing the level of contrast in the colours and introducing more colours.  It is a versatile and nowadays unusual technique where its effect is reminiscent of the pointillisme used by impressionists of the early 20th Century.  





Painted carpets

Painting an oriental rug on a dining room floor seems an elegant hygienic solution for awkward surfaces in need of a decorative finish. Having painted one, I received a series of requests to brighten all kinds of spaces, a dining room,  bathrooms, cloakrooms and even conservatories.    The example in this photograph is painted on a cork tiled floor, itself painted in faux marble, and generally lies discreetly under a dining room table.