• Faux
  • Exterior Faux
  • Faux Bois
  • Faux Marble
  • Stenciling
  • Strie
  • Treillage
  • Venetian Plaster
  • Furniture
  • Gold Leaf
  • Pompeii Murals
  • Trompe L"Oeil
  • Restoration

              Color Washing,  Sponging and Ragging

Color washing, sponging and ragging have been the bread and butter that have supported my business since day one.  These faux treatments are superior to wallpaper in that the client and designer have the choice in custom-selecting the exact color needed for the space.  Faux painting is great in bathrooms because there are no wallpaper seams to worry about lifting due to shower steam.  I have always specified top name quality paints for my faux base coats for longevity.  I have seen faux jobs that I did twenty years ago that look just as good as the day they were done.  When fauxing large surfaces, especially two-story walls, the most difficult task is ensuring that there are no dark areas where the faux artist stopped and started that area.  This separates the experienced from the inexperienced.


Faux Finish Patina Colorwashing Wall Finish, in Pinecrest









                                     Exterior Faux

Christine, of Miami's Faux by Christine, on an articulated lift, faux finishing the exterior of a house

I have had the pleasure of applying an old world finish on the exteriors of many homes.  This can be done with the use of an articulated lift.  The finish is reminiscent of the time-washed walls of the palaces and villas one finds all over Europe.



Old World Faux Finish, Exterior Glazing, Pinecrest





             Faux Bois, Faux Wood or Wood Graining

Nothing is more difficult for a faux finisher than replicating wood grain.  Getting the color right is a big part of it but the technique of imitating the wood grain is the hardest.  Many people go to schools especially to learn this art, spending grueling weeks learning how to apply layer upon layer of glazes.  Over the years, I have been contracted to paint faux wood in areas that cabinetmakers were not able to install wood for some reason or another.  Wood graining is very time consuming making it cost-prohibitive for the client and it almost becomes less expensive to use the actual wood in the cabinet fabrication instead.  Only kings and queens, and those with unlimited budgets, not the everyday client, can afford Faux Bois.

Miami Faux Finish, Faux Bois, Faux Wood, Woodgraining



                                      Faux Marble

At times, I have been commissioned by clients to marbleize columns or furniture.  Likewise there would be areas on a job site where it would be impossible to install a piece of marble, or there would a switch plate that stuck out like a sore thumb on a kitchen or bathroom backsplash that visually ruined the whole "look".   Or the client just wants the prestige of a painted marble surface instead of the real thing.  This process requires great skill in imitating the colors and textures of each individual marble or granite.

Faux Finish, Lapis Lazuli Marbleizing, Coral Gables






Stenciling is an extensive portion of my business.  It is a relatively easy way to introduce a certain look to a room without the client investing a fortune.  The designer supplies me with the colors that he or she is using in their design palette and I incorporate them in my custom stencils.  I hand cut all my stencils, after enlarging them to the size that fits the location.  At times I use metallic paints as an accent, or five or six colors creating a truly beautiful stencil design.


Olive Green Stencil with Antiquing Glaze in Coconut Grove House


One uses oil glazes and applies them with a special strie brush when doing a strie treatment.  The biggest trick is to keep the lines straight as you climb down a ladder.  The glaze dries fast so you work up a sweat completing the wall.  It is also a challenge making the top and bottom edges consistent with the rest of the paint finish.



Gold Strie Walls with Trompe L'Oeil Window, in Aventura

                   Treillage or Hand Painted Trellis

Many of my hand-painted trellis paintings have been commissioned in the Palm Beach area.  These can be a little tricky to do only because if you do not get the measurements exactly correct the first time, you might find yourself getting out the paint brush and roller again and doing it over.  I can speak from experience.


Faux Painting, Trompe L'Oeil, Treillage, Trellis Painting


                                  Venetian Plaster

When done well, Venetian Plaster is extremely beautiful.  It is fabricated from marble dust, which explains what the Italians are doing with all the marble powder left over from their quarries.  Venetian plaster is labor intensive, applying coat after coat of the costly material imported from Italy.  The walls have to be very smooth, devoid of any texture, before applying the Venetian plaster.  A final protective wax coat is recommended.


Faux Treatmwent, Aventura ,Gold Tinted Venetian Plaster

                                Furniture Finishes

Furniture refinishing and hand-painted furniture has always been a large portion of my business.  Many clients have pieces that no longer match the color scheme that the designer is introducing and instead of disposing of them, the item gets a makeover.  When refinishing furniture it is very important to know what type of paint was used originally so that you don't have problems with paint peeling in the future.  There is much prep work involved, including sanding and applying new basecoats.  The fun part comes next, applying the glazes and the distressing techniques.  I have also faux finished many kitchens, giving them the old world country look.


Hand Painted Powder Room Vanity in North Miami Residence


                                       Gold Leaf

During my faux career, I have faux gold-leafed (Dutch metal) countless moldings, ceilings, walls and furniture.  The process entails using thin sheets of imitation gold leaf and that is where the similarity between the real gold leaf application and the faux end.  I have gold-leafed with the 23-carat product only once in my life and truthfully I would prefer to keep it that way.  The real gold leaf requires a much more extensive preparation than the imitation leaf, and the leaf itself is twice as thin as the Dutch metal leaf.


Gold-Leafed Coffered Ceiling in Pinecrest Mansion


                                   Pompeii Murals

I found that there is nothing more enjoyable in my business than painting Pompeii murals.  When living in Rome I was fortunate to visit Pompeii many times.  I have always been infatuated with the intricately executed artworks that were greatly tarnished by time and volcanoes.  After the mural is mapped in, I apply hundreds of layers of colored glazes, aging it to a distressed perfection.



Garland Pompeii Mural in Coral Gables



                                    Trompe L'Oeil

Trompe L'Oeil (Translated from French to mean "To fool the eye" ) dates back to early Greek and Roman times, witnessed in Pompeii murals. It was revived in the Renaissance, where it was used in frescoes and ceiling murals to portray architectural perspective illusion. These hand-painted plates here appear convincing because of the added shadows.


Trompe L'Oeil Plates in Ocean Reef, Florida Keys Home






                                 Paint Restoration

In the early years of my business I did restoration on Miami Beach at the Royal Palm Hotel, the Cardozo, the Cavalier, the Victor to name a few.  There was a man-made stone called scagliola, produced in Tuscany to imitate marble in the 17th century that many of the Miami Beach Art Deco hotels installed in their lobbies and exteriors as columns and other architectural elements.  This stone could be manufactured in any hue with the addition of powdered colors.  My ex-partner and I used dental cement for its long lasting strength, and then we fauxed the cement to match the existing scagliola.
         Years later, I was hired to do quite a bit of paint restoration at the Coral Gables Biltmore Hotel after the infamous Hurricane Andrew.  Among the rooms that required extensive repair were the main lobby and the ceilings in the great ballrooms that flank the lobby on either side.  This is not a job for those that fear heights as some of the ceilings are 46 feet high.  I restored many of the stencils , that had been redone by Mexican artisans in the '80's.  The Biltmore lobbies, ballrooms and the Country Club ballrooms were among the most impressive collections of stenciling and faux finishing that I have ever had the opportunity to restore.

The Fabulous Coral Gables Biltmore Stencils restored  by Faux by Christine