Friday, February 19, 2016

Thinking Outside the Frame: Kuba Cloth Art

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Remember when I brainstormed ideas for the hallway? I contemplated wallpaper and wainscoting to deemphasize the linen closet at the end of hallway. Well, I decided I can’t commit to wallpaper. The hallway is fairly narrow and I just feel like the sight lines (or lack thereof) would make things feel even more cramped and busy. Likewise, I think any type of added woodwork would emphasize all the different doors riddling the small space.

One reader suggested a built-in base cabinet with open shelving and/or cabinetry above to replace the linen closet. I absolutely LOVE the idea. It would create a more appealing focal point while still providing storage. I’m still mulling it over…a year later. (How awesome would it be to incorporate laundry-sorting organization into the base cabinet?!) In the meantime, I’ve made the executive decision to hang some stuff on the walls. I have no real plan, no layout in mind. I just want to display stuff I like. And I like Kuba cloth!

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I saved a pair of vintage Kuba textiles to my etsy favorites months ago. I couldn’t stop thinking about them. Thanks to some etsy gift cards from family last year and a Framebridge discount, I finally made them mine and had them custom framed. Once I received the textiles from the etsy seller, I simply went online to Framebridge, entered the approximate measurements of my textiles, chose the Mercer Slim frame sans mat along with the custom framing option and selected the mail-in option. I added special instructions to make the two frames the same size even though the textiles were slightly different in size so I would be able to display them together in a symmetrical layout. A few days later, a prepaid package arrived to send the textiles to Framebridge’s studio for framing. I sent them in and a few weeks later the framed Kuba cloth arrived. It was love at first sight.

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They were the perfect scale for a sliver of wall just outside the main bathroom. For a split second, I tried talking myself into hanging them somewhere more prominent that would be easier to photograph for the blog but then I realized how ridiculous that was. In real life, I wanted them in that little hallway. It would be stupid to hang them elsewhere just for a better photo op. I’m so happy I went with my gut…even though that lil’ hallway is crazy difficult to photograph. This is one of those times I wish you could experience my house in vivo. The new artwork is so much better in person and somehow it makes the hallway feel bigger.

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The other problem with photographing this area involves lighting. The main living area receives so much natural light that it’s almost impossible to capture the hallway art without completely blowing out the kitchen and living room. Again, I wish you could see them in person.

The new art looks amazing at night when the recessed lighting washes them in soft light. We purposefully installed offset lighting in the hallway to highlight the walls (not the floor). It’s a great trick we learned from our electrician.

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I’m impressed with the framing job. The frames are indeed the exact same size, per my instructions. The textiles are seemingly invisibly mounted or “floating” on a linen-like paper backdrop with no mat. There are no big wrinkles in the fabric, but I love that the natural, imperfect texture of the raffia is still evident from behind the glass.

The frames came complete with picture-hanging hardware (i.e., picture wire) already attached. I hung them myself. Thanks to all those calculus classes I had to take for my pharmacy degree, my math skills allowed me to get the placement right on the first try. However, every time I hang something on an interior wall, I am reminded of our decision to not gut the interior plaster walls and replace them with drywall. I’m all ready to go with my drywall anchor when I realize I’m working with plaster, not drywall. Grrrr. Oh well. Masonry anchors to the rescue!

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They’re really pretty to look at from the bathroom. Let’s be honest. 90% of the time I’m going to the bathroom with the door open, thanks to a very social three-year-old.

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If you’d like to give Framebridge a try, you can use the promo code HOUSETWEAKING at checkout to score 10% off your first purchase. I’m going to use the custom framing service to have one of Everett’s art pieces framed. I’ve been saving it since he was kindergarten and it’s about time I put it on display.

Happy framing!

images: Dana Miller for House*Tweaking

Article Source: Thinking Outside the Frame: Kuba Cloth Art

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