Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Project Time!


Italian, 16th Century, cut and voided silk velvet from Genoa
Standing in at 26" x 20"

In case some of you don’t know I’m an antique textile dealer, I deal mainly in 15th –18th century European textiles and I make pillows out of fragments. Sometimes I get pieces in that are to big for a single pillow and I never cut pieces that are in mint to near mint condition. If they’re too small to make a hanging I mount them on a stretcher frame so they can be hung for display. Sometimes once mounted they don’t stand out or have as much presence as I think they should have so I give them the presence I feel they need. Hence the project!


I just happened to have purchase a 19th century antique frame a couple of years ago and have never found anything to place in it, the frame measures 52” x 45” so it’s quite considerable in size. The gold gilt is chipped and the gold leaf has tarnish some but I think that just gives it more character. So we're going to blend the two pieces together and make them a perfect pair! 

The things that I needed for this project are:
3/8” thick plywood, you want it thick enough so it doesn’t have any “bend” to it
cotton batting, silk velvet fabric, spray tacky glue, staple gun and staples



Mister Man, aka the husband, cut the plywood an eight of an inch shorter all the way around since the cotton batting and silk velvet will be wrapped to the backside and they take up frame space. Next cut a piece of batting to size and spray the plywood with your tacky glue and lay the batting over the plywood smoothing out any wrinkles. I repeated this step again to give a nice plump layer over the plywood. Be sure to wrap the batting over the edges and staple on the backside. Next simply lay your silk velvet over the cotton batting and start stapling the edges on the backside, DO NOT SPRAY GLUE THE SILK VELVET. I started at the top, then bottom and then the sides making sure the fabric was pulled tight but not to tightly and stapled on the backside as I went. Trim up the edges but not to short, insert your board into the frame and use small nail brads to secure into the frame.


Next it’s time to wire the backside of my frame for hanging. (I didn’t cover the backside of my frame because the only thing I was out of was brown craft paper.) Since this frame is heavy and large I thought it best to support the bottom so I used four screw eyes for wiring up my frame. As shown I ran the hanging wire all the way around looping it through the screw eyes twice for added security. Make sure your wire is rated for the weight of your frame.


Next it’s time to hang my frame and set up this very blank wall in my studio. When hanging something of size and weight you want to make sure you use two hangers and make sure they’re nailed into studs. Studs can be found by measuring from a corner over every 16”. Lets make this wall come alive!


Up goes my frame centered on the wall.


So my frame isn’t floating on that wall alone up go a pair of mounted circa 1600 Florentine silk velvet panels. The silk velvet on those panels is very cool, the design is done in REAL silver thread and the design is huge mainly because this fabric would have been used in place of wallpaper. Yes, this very expensive fabric covered walls!


Since I want to temporarily hang the mounted silk velvet in the center of my frame I had to come up with an idea.....safety pin anyone? I simply inserted a safety pin upside down into my padded velvet and the board behind balances and keeps the pin in  place. Next I just hung the mounted piece wire on its backside from the head of the safety pin, I created a hook of sorts.


Yep, works like a charm and it's easily removable since the frame isn't for sale. See, the mounted silk velvet looks like it's floating in the middle of that big frame.


Finish off with a few accessories and a little greenery and VOILE!
(Click on the picture if you would like to see bigger)



So what do you think of my little project, did I give my mounted piece more presence?

One wall completed now to decorate the rest of my studio but before I do that perhaps I should take you backwards in time and start from the beginning on how my studio came to be........

26 comments:

The enchanted home said...

Oh my, that is just fabulous looking. The color and texture you can almost feel...so luxe. I love what you did, the setting is fabulous. Thank you for sharing this step by step it was fun to watch and the end result is perfection.

A Perfect Gray said...

that silk velvet is stunning indeed - just the perfect setting in that frame. We'd love to see more...!

donna

Maggie said...

You certainly made that fabric pop right out of the frame.
The pair of panels either side balance the gilt frame perfectly.
Just stunning, how clever you are!
Looking forward to hearing the rest of the story...........

sharon said...

I've come, I'm here!!! Wow! You were so right to tell me to come over, this looks stunning, I can't believe how chic and elegant your home looks, even your work studio looks totally impeccable!
Love your idea, thought the safety pin was the ultimate tour de force. I would never have thought of doing the one framed piece with unframed compliments on either side.
Also very clever the way you wired the frame for strength, it must be a very heavy piece.
Great post
Sharon
xx

Boxwood Terrace said...

Your studio looks amazing and those textiles are beautiful. I visited the Malleries site and the pillows are stunning. You must have so much fun working with these textiles.
Deborah

designchic said...

Simply stunning...

lvroftiques said...

Sooo gorgeous Debra! And so smart the way you've framed it on both sides! Looking forward to hearing how your studio came to be. *winks* Do you think I could take one of everything? I'll send you my first born LOL! She's about 75 lbs of furry goodness! *winks* Vanna

Mona thompson said...

How beautiful!!!! I'm in love with antique textiles and would love to be able to afford a house full of them. I've got to go to your website. How often do you do show and where? I can't wait to see more. Tell us how you got started in this business in the first place. It's all so interesting. XOXO Mona

Mona thompson said...

Just visited your site. Such absolutely gorgeous things. I'm so proud for you that they are selling and several very nice ones were reserved. These are art forms. Every time I'm at a show and see such exquisite things I just have to stand in awe and drool. I may not be able to afford them, but i certainly appreciate them. it makes me sad that so many today , just don't even get it. Have a great week. Mona

bikim said...

love the tapestry!
Rosa

LA POUYETTE - und die "Dinge des Lebens" said...

Wonderful piece of silk velvet! Could certainly live with it...

Very clever to padding it with cotton batting. Would not occur to me and it's definitely a protection for the textile.

Thank you Debra for your 'tips'!
karin

Acanthus and Acorn said...

A unique great way to show off a beautiful textile and what an absolutely gorgeous display! I could just move right...is their a bar cart close by!?

robin baron said...

I love finding use for great antique fabric too! Its a work of art in istelf!

Anonymous said...

Love how your project turned out. Also, love your French chairs & the planter below your framed project! Are you able to share the source? Thanks.

Karen T.

Acquired Objects said...

Hi Karen T.

The planter is from the 1930’s and unfortunately I bought this piece about ten years ago in CA. I’ve seen it about on the internet, 1st Dibs is one here: http://fleur.1stdibs.com/store/furniture_item_detail.php?id=400725
But the seller wants a ton for them, I think I only paid about $50 for mine. The chairs are 19th century and came from Italy about five years ago. I’m not being very helpful am I? Sorry about that but I’m glad you like them.

Thanks for asking!
Debra

Stacey said...

Yes, you did give it more presence and i loved that you flanked it with the Florentine tapestry panels. Very beautiful!

parisapartment said...

What a great project! It looks incredible, thanks for the great idea!

Blooming Rose Musings said...

Absolutely stunning! I so enjoyed seeing the step by step process. And I agree with Mona, these are works of art. I have such appreciation for antique textiles even though I can't afford them. Thank you so much for this post and I would also love to hear how you got started in this business.
Wonderful!

cityfarmer said...

girl, you are so far beyond my little pea brain ...
you're well read and studied and my mentality is the flea market ...sigh

The Zhush said...

That was truly fabulous! YES, take us back in time...I need to see more!

quintessence said...

Simply FABULOUS!! Love the framing and how you paired it with the beautiful panels. The vignette with the planter and chairs is stunning. Not to mention- what a gorgeous studio you have!!

eddieross said...

Happy Valentine's Day!
Xo,
E&J

Trouvais said...

Happy Valentine's Day..wish I could rummage around that barn a bit with you! XO Trish

Loretta Fontaine (APPLESandRUBIES) said...

Debra- It really looks elegant! Nicely done!

...and Happy Valentine's Day!


Loretta

Happy To Be/ Gl♥ria said...

Hello Debra- Not DEBBIE ha ha!! I found you from Vanna aka winks and I just love your blog..I'm your newest follower..Hugs and smiles Gloria

Divine Theatre said...

Debra,

I love the way your mind works! You have allowed the soul of the fabric's creator to shine through! I absolutely love it!

~Andie

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