This is an important question. We need to be aware of any special considerations that drying time may impact.
Depending on the finish you select, the materials we employ and the methods we use to apply them and create certain effects, drying time may extend from several hours to several days. External factors such as ambient room temperature and humidity will play a role as well.
We will let you know when a surface is sufficiently dry to begin using it normally. Please be aware that certain surfaces may feel dry to the touch but be in a curing process during which damage may ensue if touched or rubbed. If a surface sustains damage prior to completely drying, we may attempt to repair it, but the results cannot be guaranteed. It is best to leave such surfaces alone until it is safe to resume normal activity.
Certain circumstances may require us to address the project differently. For example, if the subject space needs to be ready for significant traffic (e.g. a party or other function) soon after the finish is applied, a slow-drying material may be of consequence. In such situation, having this information beforehand may help us plan and perform in alternative ways in order to serve your interests properly.
Depending on the finish and its method of application, many of our products are equally applicable to moldings and other non-flat surfaces as they are to walls.
Our aging and distressing portfolio demonstrates a wide variety of sensational finishes for moldings. Our ability to produce fine finishes is not limited to new molding material/stock, but rather to previously painted moldings as well. In addition, although it is physically easier to work on uninstalled molding, i.e. pending installation, we are equally comfortable working on molding already affixed to your walls, ceilings and other surfaces.
The specialty finishes we offer can add considerable character to plain, nondistinct moldings and to those that have been subject to years of neglect or paint buildup.
In addition to creating decorative finishes, we also are in the business of installing new moldings. We can work with material you provide or obtain new stock for you. We have access to catalogs and suppliers of some of the most beautiful, ornate and interesting millwork available today. Please be sure to ask how we can help.
A custom finish is one that has been designed specifically per client requirements. As compared to stock or standard finishes where each application is indistinguishable from the next, customization imparts unique character to a given project. As with custom cabinet manufacturing, the “fit and finish” of the product is tailored to the client’s individual needs and there is no need to select from or settle on limited choices.
We perform limited finish carpentry, i.e. moldings, casings, chair rails, etc. Larger scale projects should be referred to professional carpenters. We are prepared to assist you with referrals or to bring in our own experts.
The types of customization tend to include:
Our finishes can be accomplished on any number of surface types, including painted and unpainted walls and trim, wood, plastic laminate (e.g. Formica), glass, metal, ceramics, etc. We can apply to exterior as well as interior surfaces. We will discuss the merits of creating certain finishes versus others on different surface types, and we will educate you with respect to any issues. Do not feel constrained or limited as to what you think we can create for you based on what you think may be difficult or restrictive surface materials. What is possible will surprise you.
In the parlance of off-the-shelf paint brands, custom colors are the myriad number of hues and shades from which the client is expected to select. The manufacturer provides specific formula directions to be followed by the store’s paint mixer in order to achieve a true rendition of the sample selected from the color chip.
The glazes and other materials we craft to achieve your finish are created by mixing various quantities of pure pigments and dyes. We are not limited by a set number of published shades, but rather use our experience to “read” the color value the client seeks to target and mix and correct the mixture until the proper result is achieved. We are sure to catalog the formula we used in case we need to mix additional material to complete the project or if future requirements call for additional quantity. It is not unusual for the client to note that the colors of the glazes we mix are different from those of paint color chips they have selected as the target for us to match. The reason for this is that glaze is translucent while paint has solids within that create opacity. What we are trying to achieve is the creation of correct color, not color that hides.
Unless specifically requested by the client or their representative to use solvent-based products (oil-based, alkyd), the materials we use to achieve our product line are waterborne and based on acrylic formulations. When paint is required, latex is our choice and we limit the brands to the finest available on the market. Currently, we exclusively use Benjamin Moore™. We will not skimp on the quality or price of our materials.
While VOC (volatile organic compound) levels in solvent-based products are noxious not only to clients and residents, but to our staff as well, we firmly believe that the current state of product features and quality available on the market does not justify the use of solvent-based materials any longer. Durability and finish type are no longer an issue. In fact, reliable sources tell us that the days of high-VOC products are numbered and will not be available much longer.
In the event that solvent-based products are used, we are not responsible for client reaction to strong odors or their persistence due to long dry times. Clients must take appropriate measures when being within affected spaces and breathing chemicals or to make arrangements for exiting the premises until they deem it safe to return.
Paints and other materials are applied using different implements designed to achieve proper coverage, texture and effect while doing so efficiently and quickly. We are responsible for masking and draping client property (floors and furniture) during the application process and take care to prevent drips, spills, spray and other accidents. Materials may be applied by roller, brush, sprayer, cloth, trowel or other tool. Depending on the specific finish we are achieving, multiple processes and layers may be required, each with its own unique application method, complexity and duration.
Certain materials have extended drying times that cannot be sped up or hastened. While we use every technique available to complete our work in the minimum time necessary, the effects we are creating occasionally require patience. We plan around such situations in order to avoid being impacted by product-driven bottlenecks.
With the exception of special canvas art murals depicting Old World masters’ themes, our decorative finishes are applied directly to your surfaces. All work is performed on your premises.
Yes. However, the decision to remove wallpaper must be carefully made, as certain complications can create more of a problem that the removal is designed to address. For example:
Different kinds of wallpaper remove easily, some with much more work. The cost of removal is dependent of factors such as type, backing, adhesive and whether the wall was original prepared (“sized”) to facilitate later removal.
Wallpaper that does not remove easily can result in underlying wall damage, necessitating considerable restoration before next steps can proceed.
Older homes may have plaster walls in deteriorating condition behind wallpaper that is effectively holding the wall in place. In such cases, removal may not be recommended and the application of a decorative finish to cover and hide the underlying paper a recommended option (e.g. textured finish).
Wallpaper removal is a lengthy, labor-intensive, messy venture.Based on your requirements and the circumstances, we may perform the removal ourselves or subcontract it to one of our specialists who do nothing but wallpaper removal full time.
Depending on the project type, size and complexity, the person/people involved may vary. At a minimum (which is frequently all that is required), a certified artist will be on site and create the finish. By “certified”, we mean one who is completely and thoroughly trained and experienced in your decorative finish as well as many others within our product line. This individual will be licensed to perform the work.
In the case where a project requires additional people, staffing will be done based on required skill and experience level. For example, if a helper is needed to do nothing more than lift, carry, arrange materials and assist the artist, a lesser skilled staff member is all that is needed. If wall preparation and/or straight painting are needed, a more skilled individual but not quite licensed artist may be assigned. If a decorative finish to be applied across a large area is called for, or if multiple rooms are in scope, and if there is time pressure, an additional highly qualified artist may be part of the team. As noted above, the decision as to how to staff is factor based.
If you, the client, have specific requests as to who you want working at your premises, please be sure to discuss it with us and we will make every effort to meet your needs and preferences. If you request an individual who is already booked for the timeframe in which your project is planned, we will need to address that situation and perhaps discuss rescheduling the work if necessary.
To the extent that your requirements involve a decorative finish, the answer is yes. We are not currently equipped to handle complete restorative services, furniture repair or French polishing. However we work in association with specialists who do provide this. Please contact us for details.
Although we warehouse materials and produce client samples in a studio shop, we do not operate our sales and marketing out of a studio, but rather prefer to present at the client's subject site. Reasons include:
Faux Suede and Leather
Patterns, Geometrics and Plaids
Custom Art Imprints
Tone on Tone
Pigmented Staining and Milking
Picture and Mirror Frame Gilding
As far as we know, based on our materials’ manufacturer’s information, there is no fixed or limited life to the finish. Cared for properly and not subjected to abuse, you will enjoy your decorative finish for years to come without worrying about expirations or product failure. For those clients with special needs including dealing with heavy wear and tear, expected frequent cleaning, or water-wet conditions, we have a line of special topcoats available to help the finish live up to harsher than normal conditions.
Besides our decorative finishes and straight painting, we are available to assist you in other home improvement projects, including:
Our network of associates can also help with project general contracting, carpentry, landscape design and kitchen design and remodeling. Please contact us to arrange a consultation with our experts.
At an earlier time, our involvement in regular (“straight”) painting was limited to minimal projects done as a courtesy and convenience to our clients commissioning our decorative finishes.
Since then, we have expanded our core services to include general contract painting, both interior and exterior. For those clients whose needs span both straight and decorative painting, coordinating the various specialties, their interdependencies and timing issues can be challenging. While we will never make one type of project conditional on being awarded the other as well, we stand ready to help provide all services. Or, alternatively, if you desire we can organize, schedule and supervise the work of a straight painter you hire directly in order to make our collective work seamless, efficient and orderly.
Very. Your decorative finish will stand up to normal use and last without concern over product failure or separation. When we complete the finish, we will discuss care instructions and advise you of how best to treat your new finish.
In general, the materials we use have excellent cleaning ability, but we ask that you be reasonable. Light cleaning with soap and water is all that you should need to remove surface dirt. Occasional use of cleaning solutions such as Fantastik™ are fine provided that such cleansers are promptly removed and never scrubbed. No finish is indestructible though. We will present and discuss protective finishes with you as needed.
However, your concerns are our concerns. We urge you to think about how your subject space will be used and give us an idea of special requirements that we should be aware of in order to understand your conditions, discuss possible cautions and explore alternatives. For example: If excessive children’s fingerprints, grime and frequent cleaning is envisioned, the choice of colors, textures and topcoats should be given more thought than otherwise
Our detailed interview questions during the consultation are designed to help us gauge your requirements and expectations. The more we know, the better equipped we will be to give you the best we have to offer.
Metallics and patinas
Graining (Faux Bois)
Olde World Fresco
Aging, Antiquing and Distressing