From Concept to Completion: The Roomset, The Book and The Printing Press

“Vegas Dinette” is now “Kitchen Utensils and Ovals”. This colorful, whimsical pattern is perfect for contemporary kitchen decor, so let’s show her off.

Usually Graphics will send actual wallpaper to the photographer, and a vignette is papered in the pattern of choice, but what if there’s a complication? There’s always a complication.

For example, kitchen vignettes are notoriously expensive to build (try mocking up a range hood). Have a walk through your local Ikea and take a look at the kitchens, this is what we need to put together to put wallpaper on the walls. Not only is a kitchen build hard to coordinate, but many of the professionals who do this type of thing are located several states away near High Point, N.C.(home of the biggest and best furniture mart for business to business buying in the US). So, all creative ideas have to go back and forth via internet in images to get the Designer and the Creative Graphics Specialist on the same page creatively with the photographer.

We got lucky. One of the companies we work with had a kitchen already in place, and we like it! Fabulous; even the chairs are fabulous! Oh, wait… the paper isn’t printed yet. Did I mention complications? Ok, shoot the kitchen with the props in colors that we want, and placement we orchestrate in the plain kitchen set from at least three angles. We can now add the digital images of the wallpaper to the actual kitchen roomset photos, adjust color, and move objects (with our minds) within the shot, DPR (digital pattern replacement).

“Kitchen Utensils and Ovals” will walk down the “Bistro 750″ roomset runway in a digital dress with real accessories and a well thought out plan of how the collection should “show” in the book. There are “bleeds” (a very all-business phrase meaning the image runs off the page edges) and collages, and they all have to pleasingly flow. The images and roomsets are approved, go to press, and the collection hits the market (in the field, as we say). Now all we have to do is sell it…

From Concept to Completion: The Beginning

“From Concept to Completion” is a three part series on the process of designing a wallpaper pattern from start to finish.

A meeting is called and a suggestion is made. What are we missing, where are we going, who is the customer, what are they buying? The decision is made, and an assignment given for a stylist to create a collection based on a chosen theme.

Now the research begins; the magazines, the shopping, trend services, style directions and sales analysis. All this creative research becomes a pool of ideas. How does it all relate to wallpaper? Can we produce it, where will the consumer use it, how will it work in conjunction with current market trends in home decor?

A story board of ideas emerges from the mix and the concepts for a new collection are born. Our little pattern from the 1950′s is just one piece in the jigsaw puzzle that pulls together the information and ideas in our marketplace. Her lines are unmistakeably right for current trends and pattern placement is good. She now needs a contemporary color overhaul, and a style update to move ahead with the times. It’s a fit; a “retro” fit.

Our little makeover pattern attends the meetings, and she makes the cut! New and super upgraded, the wallpaper version of “America’s Next Top Model”; just imagine what a little lipstick and wardrobe can do! She’s a changed woman and she is in our new “Bistro 750″ collection to stay. Our stylist not only saw her for what she is but what she could be, and as with all things beautiful you can guess where she’s headed next: photography.

From Concept to Completion: Introduction

We have an archive; a magical place full of revered images and textures. It’s the kind of place that feels like you’re holding time in your white-gloved hands. These lovingly collected pieces are the inspiration for many of our design studio’s fine works, some being surprisingly contemporary in feel and form.

I am inspired by the colors and ideas of these other times, particularly when they are just a bit off-key. Take this piece for example: ovals that looked like sliced onion, ducks with dots for legs, blue spoons and yellow beets all on a background of intense grey green I have yet to find in any paint deck.

This pattern dates from the late 1940′s or early 1950′s and I discovered it among the notes and images that inspired designer Judy Evanitis for a new York Wallcoverings Collection, as yet unnamed, now in story board form in our studio. I show you here what I have come to call “Vegas Dinette”. This little pattern has begun a new life , and I would like you to travel with me through her journey from past to present as we reinvent her for our new collection.