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Inspiration Blog

Step By Step: Gilding

Gilding- How Harlequin does it: 1. 220 grit Water paper, Harlequin’s Gold Size (the glue) Harlequins Gold or Silver Leaf, it comes in a book of 25 leafs and one book will cover approx 0.5 sq meters. Harlequin’s Blond Shellac crystals once dissolved, will seal the finished item and a 750ml bottle of Methylated spirits. A clean application brush 50 mm and a soft dry brush, and a piece of clean soft cotton cloth (an old tee-shirt will do) and a clean container. 2. Decide what you want to gold or silver leaf, I decided to silver leaf a black painted table I found in a junk shop. There were some small repairs required which involved a screw or two. I filled the repairs and touched up any damage with black paint. The existing surface had been painted with what look like Black water based paint, a sponge roller had been used to apply the paint and because of this it had left a slightly textured surface which, if left, would be clearly visible through the gold or silver leaf. 3. So With 220 grit water paper and clean water (I added a little washing up liquid to the water, it helps the water paper slide better) I sanded the table to remove any texture or roughness, if you look at picture 4 & 5 you can see the texture on the table that i have started to remove by the sanding. Because I was going for a completely silver look (not much of the base colour would be seen ) I was not too worried about sanding through the black paint to reveal... read more

Step By Step: Woodwash

Woodwash on Bedside Cabinet: 1. The item you choose must be raw wood. Wood that has been previously varnished or painted will require stripping. 2. You will need 1 x roll of Harlequins mutton cloth 1 x application brush 1 x softening brush 1 x bottle of Harlequins Lime white woodwash 1 x sheet 150 grit sandpaper 1 x bottle of Harlequins Satin Decorators varnish* Please note for items that will receive a lot of wear and tear please use Harlequin Furniture varnish. 3. Using 150 grit sandpaper Sand item lightly to remove and dirt or grease. 4. Pour your woodwash into a suitable container. Using your application brush apply the woodwash to one side of your item only. Do not try and technique with the woodwash just paint it onto the surface. 5. Whilst still wet take your Harlequin mutton cloth in a cupped hand and gently wipe over the surface  to remove excess. 6. Now use your softening brush and gently brush the wet woodwash against the grain of your item and then with the grain. This will eliminate all lines and give an even finish all over. Repeat process on all sides until item is complete. Allow to dry 4 – 6 hours @23oc. 7. Pour Harlequins Decorators varnish into a suitable container. 8. Apply 3 x coats of varnish to your item allowing enough drying time between coats (see container for times) Lightly sand between coats to ensure a smooth finish. Please note For high traffic items we suggest you use Harlequins Furniture varnish for higher durability. 9. Once complete add your handles or other... read more

Painting a small space!

  An all-white colour palette won’t make your small apartment look larger according to the designers. Also by using less furniture it won’t make an apartment feel larger. Carefully place your furniture and choose the correct colour to create an inviting space with style. The best ways to expand a space is to use very clear colours. Choose a palette of sharp colours and not dull ones. Bring excitement and depth to a room by adding splashes of colour to the inside of a bookshelf for example. Paint one wall a different or deeper colour than the others. Don’t be afraid of bold colours as a darker colour on one wall can make the space look larger. Add dark or bright colours to your space and make them feel like jewel boxes. A dark colour can make a room cozy if it has very little natural light. When choosing your paint colur consider the relation it has with the textiles, light, furniture and the overall look and feel of the room. Plan your colours based on how your rooms lead into one another, as there should be cohesion between rooms. Is your room dark because there’s not enough light? First get the lighting right and then choose the colour you like. Orange for example is bold, bright, inviting and warm which will make a room glow both day and... read more

Create a cozy home this winter!

Bring warmth back into your home and create a cozy space this winter with some of these tips. Add extra pillows and throws to add warmth if you don’t have a fireplace. If you do have a fireplace you can easily pull pieces in to the center of the room and create a cozy gathering spot for winter entertaining. Add lots of bright and cheerful colour to avoid the winter blues. If you are going to paint a space in your home this winter add some bright colour to the space, as this will ensure that your neutral spaces don’t look stark and cold. Make use of a large mirror to maximize what neutral light is still available. Hang the mirror for example on a blank stretch of wall to reflect light throughout your space. Paint the frame of the mirror in a bright eye-catching colour. Add luxurious cashmere and soft velvet bed pillows to your bedding and turn your bedroom into a cozy refuge from that harsh rainy and windy weather. Add Slipcovers to your chairs to add warmth and style to you’re your dining room. A fluffy rug also adds warmth and if you layer a thinner smaller rug on top of it, it will make it even cozier. Always add some extra throw pillows for a quick winter style update with playful patterns and some bold bright colours. If you have window seats always keep them cozy by bulking them with fluffy seat cushions and pillows. Also do a quick décor makeover for your fireplace to ensure that’s its ready for all that extra time spend this... read more

Blue as this year’s winter colour trend!

Blue is a very popular and versatile colour to work with and is the colour trend for winter 2014 in men’s fashion. Blue associated to the sky and water gives us a connection to serenity, calmness and freshness. Blue is the perfect colour for the home sanctuary as it is very versatile, masculine and works with many different colours like tan, grey, black, gold, silver, white, brown and cream. You can incorporate Blue into your home and interior by way of wooden furniture, upholstered furniture, cushions, rugs, blankets, curtains, lighting, artwork, homeware items or by painting your walls blue. Use blue as a highlight colour and add one or two blue items in your room. What do you think of these great blue interiors? (Images from Pinterest)... read more

Transform a room by painting the ceiling.

Start with the ceiling when it comes to choosing a paint colour for your room and explore how colour on the ceiling can transform a room. We often forget ceilings and little thought is given to the contribution a ceiling has to the overall design of a room. Look at your ceiling and don’t just coat it in some ubiquitous white paint. Make use of colour, sheen, pattern and texture to transform the entire look and feel of your room. Look up the next time you want to refresh the look of your room. If you experiment with a ceiling in a deeper shade it will cozy up and balance a large open space. Also experiment with glazes on your ceiling which can also include metallic effects. Keep the colour contrast between the walls and ceilings to the minimum when you want to make a small room with a low ceiling feel larger. Choose ceiling colours in a flat sheen if you want to achieve the best effect. Painting your ceiling is a budget- friendly way to give any room a new and inviting look. Let your ceiling be like a blank canvas for your creative expression. Information taken from Benjamin Moore- http://www.benjaminmoore.com/ Images from: bhg.com, indulgy.com, yourhomedecorideas.com, anythingologyblog.blogspot.ca,... read more

“Women think of all colours except the absence of colour. I have said that black has it all. White too. Their beauty is absolute. It is the perfect harmony.” 
― Coco Chanel, Chanel

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Bright Colours and How they impact our emotions!

Warm colours often evoke feelings of happiness, optimism and energy. Red is the warmest and most dynamic of the colours – it triggers opposing emotions. It is often associated with passion and love as well as anger and danger. It can increase a person’s heart rate and make them excited. If you want to draw attention to a design element, use red. But use it as an accent colour in moderation as it can be overwhelming. Orange enhances a feeling of vitality and happiness. Like red, it draws attention and shows movement but is not as overpowering. It is aggressive, but balanced – it portrays energy yet can be inviting and friendly. Orange is great for a call to action to buy or subscribe to a product. Yellow is perhaps the most energetic of the warm colours. It is associated with laughter, hope, and sunshine. Accents of yellow help give your design energy and will make the viewer feel optimistic and cheerful. However, yellow tends to reflect more light and can irritate a person’s eyes. Too much yellow can be overwhelming and should be used sparingly. In design, it is often used to grab attention in an energetic and comforting way. Cool colours include green, blue, and purple. Cool colours are usually calming and soothing but can also express sadness. Purple is often used to help spark creativity as it’s a mixture of blue (calm) and red (intense). Green symbolizes health, new beginnings, and wealth. Green is the easiest on the eyes and should be used to relax and create balance in a design. It is a great colour... read more

Our recent trip to Cambodia!

Our recent trip to Cambodia inspired our passion for Blue! It was used everywhere on boats and houses. It was sometimes bright and sometimes faded. Come and visit our showroom and maybe liven up your home with one of our blues inspired by Cambodia. Our wood washes in Blue moon or English Sky or our washable matt paint in either cornflower or bright blue.... read more

Why buy environmentally friendly paint?

HARLEQUIN Paints all water-based paint contains V.O.C’s (Volatile Organic Compounds). These compounds are found in many products. They give off a vapour that has a nasty smell and can be harmful to our breathing, our eyes, cause nausea, headaches and in severe cases liver and kidney problems. According to the European standards, an environmentally friendly paint should contain little or no V.O.C.. Harlequin Paints is one of a few companies in South Africa who conform to these very high standards in their paints and varnish range. Green Leaf Leaf and water Environment and Plant and... read more