We recently had the great pleasure of attending the West Coast Art & Framing Expo with a group of interior design tastemakers (including our girls Holly, Cathy & Vicki) all of whom had been invited by Steve & Jill McKenzie. In his former life, Steve was CEO of Larson Juhl, and he was asked by the WCAF founders to bring a few of his interior designer friends down to the Paris hotel in Las Vegas to increase interest and excitement about the framing industry and the tremendous creative opportunities that framing affords us...
... and let us just tell you, we left extremely excited about so much of what we saw! Our brains are literally spinning with ideas of ways we can truly make our client's works of art shine. We'll have a few Journal posts in the coming weeks to recap our time in Vegas, but absolutely have to start by telling you about the two artisinal framing companies that made our hearts race.
First, Goldleaf Framemakers out of Santa Fe, New Mexico. There seriously are not be words to adequately describe how stunningly gorgeous the work of is, but these pictures will help us convey our sentiments.
Marty Horowitz, the genius craftsman behind this company, literally wrote the book on gold leaf framemaking, as he's been well known in the gilding industry for many years, and his book "An Introduction to Water Guilding" has become the bible for guilders internationally. His work is un-be-lievable!
He also happens to be a super cool guy, which makes the prospect of working with him on custom projects just darn fun.
Go peruse the site for more inspiration in any number of distinct historical styles including Impressionist, Italian, Spanish, Dutch, French, Contemporary / Modernist, American & Concerto... and contact Marty directly for any wild hairbrained creative framing idea you may have. Custom is right up his alley and he's got the skills to make it happen.
RHONDA FEINMAN CUSTOM FRAMES
Second, the impeccable work of Rhonda Feinman. Just like Marty, Rhonda uses only genuine gold leaf on her handcrafted frames, and they are breathtaking. This pattern below, which we spied at her booth at WCAF, had us completely entranced. It's available in a wider version as well as a narrower version (shown here, nested together) - both amazing!
All of Rhonda's custom frames are made in their NY facility with the utmost respect for the legacy of centuries of craftsmanship in frame making. Artisans at the company hand carve, cast and apply decorative composition ornament, then guild with only genuine gold leaf to produce sensitive and faithful reproductions of fine antique frames.
Also very well known for their repair and restoration work of antique frames, Rhonda Feinman is where it's at when it comes to recreating lost ornaments, cleaning and refinishing or even completely resizing or replicating original antique frames.
More reports from our time at the WCAF show coming soon, but in the meantime we'd love to hear from you on your favorite framing resources, tips, ideas or questions. Leave a comment below.