Japanese Shou Sugi Ban

Shou Sugi Ban is the Japanese technique of burning or charring wood. It’s a stunning wood treatment to consider for the modern and contemporary home, especially for those wanting to make an eye-catching statement. This charring technique creates a richly hued, dark color in wood that actually highlights the unique texture and grain of each piece of wood. It also happens to dramatically increase the wood’s durability and strength, which is another noteworthy bonus to Shou Sugi Ban, and happens to be the main reason this technique was initiated in Japan centuries ago.

via Barn Light Electric Company
Shou Sugi Ban tree stump coffee table – with free shipping!

There are some cutting edge, contemporary designs being produced using Shou Sugi Ban techniques. The coffee tables shown and the furniture below are beautiful examples of contemporary Shou Sugi Ban furniture.

Shou Sugi Ban & Burnished Steel Primal Coffee Table by Egg Designs
via Emrahus
Interior Design Laboratorium

The steps necessary to accomplish a Shou Sugi Ban wood technique are actually relatively simple, but it still needs to be done with great care and safety. Of course learning how to build your own furniture with Shou Sugi Ban wood would be a feat, but simpler applications like a paneled accent wall could be more easily achieved by the average person.

Step-by-Step Shou Sugi Ban Process:

1) Burn the wood – Use a propane torch to char the wood. Add scorch marks to areas of the wood, without completely blackening the entire piece of wood. Make sure to be safe by wearing protective glasses and keeping water and a fire extinguisher near by.

2) Brush the wood – After you have finished burning the wood to your liking, then wet the wood and scrub it with a wire brush. The more you brush the wood with the wire brush, the lighter the finish will become. Stop at your desired wood tone.

3) Wash the wood – Thereafter you need to wash the wood to remove the dust and loose charred pieces. Then allow to completely dry.

4) Finish the wood – Seal and finish the wood once dried with Tung or Penefin Oil to preserve your Shou Sugi Ban’d wood long term.

via Snickeriet
via Grassroots Modern – Sett Studio Prefab

When charring wood you’ll find that there are range of shades you can accomplish depending on how extensively you burn the wood. With a lighter hand, you will create variations of wood tones with some darker areas like in the wood above, but with a heavier hand you can create a completely ebony shade of wood.

Design by Mindy Gayer

I personally love the idea of using Shou Sugi Ban wood for an exterior door or coffee table. While you can stain wood black, there is something special about the effect that charring wood creates. It’s the kind of wood treatment you should select if you really want to make a bold statement. There are several companies providing Shou Sugi Ban wood planks for flooring and other uses ready to go! Check out Reclaimed DesignWorks, CharredWood.com, and Montana Timber Products to see their Shou Sugi Ban wood collections.

Below you’ll see the design work of Stefan Bishop. After this designer’s expert Shou Sugi Ban application, each ring within the interior of the wood pops out with dramatic flair. Truly a work of art!

Furniture design by Stefan Bishop

How would you use Shou Sugi Ban within your home? Would you give it a try for your home’s exterior paneling, or perhaps your cabinets or a coffee table? Share you Shou Sugi Ban preferences in the comments below!

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Elegant Office Ideas for Spring and Summer

Inspiration from the World’s Best Coworking Spaces

Considering how we are all likely to be working from home for the foreseeable future, there’s no better time to redesign your home office than now – especially considering that having a well-design office can do wonders for your well-being, productivity, motivation and performance.

In fact, the 2019 Workplace Design Survey conducted by Capital One found that 90% of professionals perform better in workplaces that are well-designed or have certain elements like natural light and adaptable spaces.

Coworking spaces are very much aware of this fact, which is why it’s a good idea to take inspiration from some of the most beautiful coworking spaces around the globe when it comes to redesigning your home office. That being said, here are some home office designs inspired by some of the most beautiful coworking spaces around the world.

Add a vibrant splash of color

The Ministry of New coworking space in Mumbai is the perfect example of a workspace that creatively combines vibrant colors without looking unpleasant or tacky. According to the co-founders of this hip coworking space, Marlies Bloemndaal and Natascha Chadha, they chose to decorate their coworking space with colorful pieces and personalized furniture to create a space that is dedicated to building a community. In addition to creating spaces that are uniquely homey, certain colors can also help in attaining greater efficiency and focus, like pale greens and calming blues. Other more vibrant colors like yellow can help you feel more energized, optimistic and fresh.

Show off your green thumb

Being stuck at home can be depressing, but surrounding yourself with greenery can instantly lift your spirits. A study conducted by researchers from the University of Technology in Sydney found that when plants were introduced into a workspace, significant reductions in stress among workers were observed. Other studies also note that the productivity of employees can jump to over 15% when a handful of plants are introduced into working environments. In redesigning your home office, you can take a cue from Industrious’ curated coworking spaces (with locations across the U.S.), which incorporate hanging ceiling plants and low-maintenance pothos. This vine-like plant with heart-shaped leaves is perfect for those people who are too busy to care for a plant but still want to enjoy the beauty of having plants at home. Pothos can thrive in low light and humidity for long periods of time, and have also been known to help remove pollutants like benzene, toluene, formaldehyde, carbon monoxide and xylene from the air.

Industrius‘ coworking facilities filled with greenery.

Incorporate wood fixtures

For many people, summer means beach trips and sunbathing, and while current circumstances might prevent us from taking those trips to the beach, it doesn’t mean we can’t take the beach to us. You can do this by introducing wooden fixtures like the rattan lamps at the bamboo haven of Hubud into your home office. Hubud’s coworking space is located in Bali where bamboo and other wood elements are abundant. Aside from giving you that beach vibe, natural elements like wood can actually do wonders for your well-being. Designs that incorporate elements that can give you a sense of nature help in engaging your mind and restoring attention and focus, which in turn improves performance.

Grovemade’s wood laptop stands and accessories – Shop here!

Many of us might still be getting used to the idea of working from home, and the best part to boost productivity is to designate a space that you can enjoy working in. While you’re at it, consider incorporating fixtures and designs that will not only keep you productive, but also inspire you. Explore the rest of Interiors by Jacquin for more ways to transform your home office into a productive work space.

At Home with Artist Sue Yu Petty

Artist Sue Yu Petty is a vibrant painter with a love of color and texture. I met Sue last summer where I learned about her dynamic artwork and I knew that I had to share her creative passion with my readers. Her path to becoming an artist was quite unique in that she transitioned from working as a chiropractor with her own practice. However, Sue always had a passion for art since childhood. She ultimately sold her chiropractic business and devoted her attention to painting and homeschooling her children full time. I was especially interested to learn that Sue created her own backyard art studio utilizing a shed. I asked Sue for some guidance on how to best create a safe artist space out of a shed, and she gladly shared a few details and resources for our artist readers out there, which you’ll find later in this article.

“Abundance” 18×24, Oil Painting, Sue Yu Petty

Sue’s preferred painting technique is 3-D oil sculpting for a textured, dynamic look. I love that she paints subjects that bring joy to the viewer like butterflies, hearts, flowers, colorful birds, sunsets, or bold abstract works; perfect for brightening a home. It is important to Sue that her paintings are created with purpose and that they evoke a special meaning and feeling in each individual viewer. Observing and owning a painting is experiential in nature, and I agree that the best paintings evoke feelings and emotions.

Sue Yu Petty’s Home Decor

Sue’s home is decorated in a serene natural palette, ideal for showcasing her colorful artwork. She has given us a look at some of her favorite spaces in her home.

Now onward to the details on Sue’s backyard artist’s studio shed. As a mom who homeschools her children, it was important for Sue to have an adequate work space at home for painting and creating. Building a backyard shed was a perfect solution. I was curious about what it took to customize her shed for oil painting. Sue has been kind enough to share 7 great tips for building your own artist’s shed at home.

Art Studio Shed Tips – From Sue Yu Petty

(1) I would hire a local smaller builder if I could do this again. I used a larger company called Urlich. There was an online company called Studio that really impressed meif you have the budget. Searching for local independent builders through community Facebook Groups is what I would recommend.
(2) Go bigger than what you think you need…As an artist working on several pieces you will quickly run out of space and wish you had more.
(3) DIY for the interior finish out! Save money and use it for your art supplies…the inside material is going to get paint all over and messy spills…panels for walls and peel and stick floors will be just fine. 🙂
(4) Use heavy wire to string up high and create drying racks that keep the space open and have plenty of space to work.
(5) You will need electricity for this…a simple window AC/HEAT unit to keep your shed comfortable temperature wise throughout the year.
(6) Get a commercial grade air filter to help keep your workspace more breathable and safe.
(7) Lastly, I highly recommend a fan placed in one of the windows to push any chemicals in the air out, plus a ceiling fan, especially if you are working with oil paints.

Inside Sue Yu Petty’s artist studio shed.

Sue Yu Petty’s wall of inspiration.

Sue Yu Petty using her signature palette knife painting technique.

Sue’s signature style involves creating her bold artwork using a palette knife versus a paint brush, as photographed above. Her painting style was inspired and influenced by renowned Reflectionist Artist, JD Miller, who is known for his 3-D application of oil paint. After many years of painting Sue has mastered her own style of 3-D oil sculpting, crafting artwork created with warmth, purpose and love.

“Eternal Flame” 48×60, Oil Painting, Sue Yu Petty

Contact Sue Yu Petty regarding a commissioned piece for your space.

Getting creative with VETRO Glassblowing Studio & Gallery

VETRO Glassblowing Studio owner David Gappa with staff Lindsey Barker.

As a creative professional I am always looking to learn a new art form, and VETRO Glassblowing Studio & Gallery in Grapevine, TX definitely delivered. You’ll be surprised by what types of hands-on creative outlets you might enjoy. The key is to get out there and try something new. Glassblowing proved to be extremely exciting!

VETRO Glassblowing Studio & Gallery is owned by artist and founder David Gappa, who interestingly transitioned from a career in architecture. David Gappa and his team not only assist visitors in blownglass creations, but they are also professional artists in their own right, creating a wide range of gallery art for the discerning eye. David Gappa’s architecture background has given him a unique approach to this art form, allowing him to construct the most advanced sculptural glass art that I have ever seen. This studio is definitely worth visiting.

During my visit VETRO’s team of expert glassblowers showed me around the studio and educated me on the history of glassblowing, which is a much older art form than I would have ever imagined. I learned that archaeologist have found glass creations as old as 5000 years old, and that today glassblowing still uses the same tools and processes that were utilized originally. Fascinating!

The Glassblowing Process

Here I begin the process of making my own stemless wine glass at the VETRO glassblowing studio. Their team assisted me in the process of making my own glass item step by step. With VETRO’s public workshops you can stop by to make a range of creations from a wine glass, to a glass flower, a bowl, and more. Sometimes they even offer wine nights where you get to create in their glassblowing studio (assisted of course) while enjoying a glass of wine.

One tip before you participate is to make sure that you wear close toed shoes and avoid wearing any synthetic fibers since you’ll be around fire and furnaces. There is no reason to be nervous though because the assistance provided is thorough and attentive. My VETRO tour guides for the day were amazing; great artisans and teachers!

I selected my custom color combination for my wine glass.

You would be surprised by how many tools it takes to create one blown glass product! It’s also generally a two person job! There is a lot more to glassblowing than you would expect. Just to create a single wine glass I feel like I went through nearly a 10 step process. Seeing this art form in person gave me a new appreciation of the skill and effort it takes to create the type of glass products we see at stores and galleries. Glassblowing artisans go to school to learn their craft and have to be aware of many formulas when creating various types of shapes and vessels.

I am looking forward to making another glass creation with VETRO’s expert staff. The glassblowing experience is really addictive!

Tools of the trade shown above.

If you happened to be wondering… glass blowing actually DOES involve blowing the glass.

VETRO also offers workshops for private groups where you create alongside a group of your own friends or co-workers, separate from their public workshop offerings. It’s a really great idea for a party or celebration or possibly for a team building activity, and everyone gets to take home their creation.

As far as the quality of VETRO’s glassblown products, I was truly impressed! The quality and heavy weight of their stemless wine glasses exceeded my expectations, and I didn’t lose out on any quality even though it happened to be a guided DIY. I have seen other glassblown wine glass products that are extremely lightweight and thin, the kind of product that would easily break, but VETRO delivers on aesthetics and quality every time. If you enroll in one of their wine glass workshops, your creation will look similar to this (see below).

Advanced Artisan Creations & Customization Options

Now for a look at one of the VETRO team’s more advance creations. Below you’ll get a behind the scenes look at them creating an artistic glass bowl with a really unique textured pattern. VETRO’s team of advanced artisans are capable of creating a wide range of custom options for your home or art collection. Being the design-lover that I am, I am always looking for home decor items with a more unique touch to them. VETRO will deliver on originality when it comes to their custom creations.

VETRO’s storefront offers a selection of ready made blownglass products and works of art that you can take home with you the same day. However, if you need inspiration for a custom product, browsing their storefront is sure to give you some ideas. I came home with SO many ideas for customizing my home with blownglass. The possibilities are endless.

From an interior design perspective, I love the idea of a collage of multiple sized glass bowls as a wall art feature like shown below. Perfect for a statement wall!

Also, consider some of their other decorative selections for enhancing your home’s decor. The works shown below are advanced creations by VETRO professionals that you can purchase or have custom made for your own home or real estate project.

Custom items to consider having VETRO create for your home or business:

(1) Wall sconce light fixtures or pendant lights

(2) Figurative sculpture art (like the incredible dinosaur head shown below) – Created by VETRO owner and artist David Gappa.

(3) Custom chandeliers – of any shape or size you can imagine!

(4) Abstract glass panels as sculptural art (shown below)

(5) A collection of oversized glass bowls for a statement wall installation

Special thanks are in order for Jorma Rahja and Shannan Shumate for showing me the ropes at the VETRO Glassblowing Studio & Gallery. I will definitely be back again! My plan is to create a matching set of stemless wine glasses and serving platters for the dining table. What will you create with VETRO Glassblowing Studio? Schedule your visit today and let them know that Interiors by Jacquin sent you!

VETRO glassblowers Jorma Rahja and Shannan Shumate with Jacquin Headen

Photography by Zoe Martinez

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AOI Home – Shopping the antique treasures of India

If you’re looking for luxury architectural features that are truly unique you will be impressed and inspired by AOI Home, formerly Art of Old India. This company travels throughout India reclaiming architectural elements from historic Indian buildings and structures. This ranges from antique doors, to ceiling tiles, to mirrors and furniture. I had the pleasure of touring their Dallas store, filled with one of a kind treasures of both large scale proportions and small.

While touring AOI Home I learned that they also sell beautiful rugs, ikat pillows (shown below) and other modern day designs with the traditional Indian aesthetic in mind. I loved their intricate bone inlay furniture (shown above) and their large selection of oversized antique, carved doors. Most importantly, you do not have to live in Dallas to take advantage of their selection of Indian architectural elements. They ship across the United States. Get in contact with AOI Home to learn how your can purchase antique architectural elements for your next remodeling project.

Which architectural element would you want most in your home? Visit AOI Home to browse their collection.

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Remodeling Your Home To Sell

via Desire to Inspire

If you’re trying to sell a home, you don’t have to accept your home as it is before you sell it. Much like with vehicles, the work you put into a home creates additional value and raises its price, and there are many smart ways to get the most impact for a limited investment. There are a spectrum of upgrades available ranging from minor fixes and patches to full-on renovation of the entire house. You don’t need to invest a lot to get a good return, however. Here is a list of one or two-day remodeling projects that can still add a sizeable boost in property value before you sell your home. 

(1) Faux Wood Beams in the Master Bedroom

Faux wood beams are all the rage right now. They provide a natural, looming beauty to whatever room they are placed in. So, where better to have them than the master bedroom? Upgrades to the kitchen, bathrooms, and bedrooms rank as the most profitable, so by installing some gorgeous wood beams, you can help give it that air of elegance and superiority that a master bedroom is supposed to have. They also look great in the kitchen as well. Check out this great faux beam installation tutorial from Jenna Sue Design blog here.

via Jenna Sue Design

(2) Outdoor Upgrades

Adding a deck to your backyard can increase the resale value of your home a great deal, attracting a wider group of prospective home buyers. Remember to properly calculate deck size to maximize your outdoor space and use hidden deck fasteners to get that clean, perfect deck look that will attract home buyers.

Furthermore, Adding areas of shade and cover to your deck or other backyard gathering areas offer relief from changing weather conditions and the glare from the sun. Gazebos, modern pergolas, awnings, umbrellas, and canopies add style and character to your outdoor areas and can increase your home’s attractiveness to potential buyers. Installing a patio ceiling creates an additional living space that will appeal to homebuyers and add value to your home. 

via DIY Home Center

(3) Garage Remodeling

Garages serve a variety of purposes nowadays, and upgrading yours will have an impact on property value. You might consider some shiny, indoor stained concrete floors, perhaps. Concrete is another trending material right now and by going with the stained variety, you’ll be ensuring long-lasting protection as well as a sheen that will leave an impression on anybody who stops by to visit. A properly polished and colored concrete garage floor is known to draw bigger numbers on the market, and is very likely to draw a good return on your investment. 

(4) Butcher Block Countertops

Wood is really popular right now, so it’s no surprise that butcher block kitchen countertops made their way on this list. The remodel is a small one, usually not taking more than two days. Adding butcher block to your kitchen gives it a more down-home feel, and as long as the wood is properly stained and finished, these countertops will stay looking great for a long time. Butcher block is the perfect way to spice up a boring kitchen.

via Chris Loves Julia

(5) Update Your Light Fixtures

Updating your lighting to something that looks a bit more luxurious will elevate the look of the entire space and will give your home the appearance of greater value when it comes to selling your home. Consider upgrading the lighting in the living room and kitchen for greatest impact.

via Bein Design

Small Projects Can Add Big Value

Just because you aren’t doing any large-scale renovations on a home, doesn’t mean you can’t significantly raise its property value. By doing any of the remodels on this list, or combining them, you can achieve a significant boost in property value, despite not investing a huge chunk of money. Try one or more of these projects and see for yourself how easy it is to get more than you ever imagined for your current home.

Matt Lee is the owner of the Innovative Construction Materials blog and a content writer for the building materials industry. He is focused on helping fellow homeowners, contractors, and architects discover materials and methods of construction that save money, improve energy efficiency, and increase property value.

Luxe Gift Guide – Interiors by Jacquin style!

Check out these inspiring gifts for yourself or a friend – All handmade and found on Etsy!

Graphic layout by Somi Kwon

Which Etsy find from our roundup is your favorite?

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6 Ways to Use Dark Colors While Still Achieving a Bright Space

Image via MyDomaine – designed by Coco Republic

Spaces that consist mainly of dark colors are becoming more and more popular and provide a different feeling than the usual white or neutral spaces. But what if you were able to achieve both with a discerning blend of dark and light? With a few tips you can cleverly use dark accents while still being able to enjoy a bright space, and it’s mostly done by pairing well-selected home décor. Your darker space doesn’t have to be dreary. Here are six ways to still achieve a bright space while decorating with dark colors! 

1. Try to plan your space around natural light

If you’re able to, place your dark colors and furniture in a space with a good amount of natural light. This will cause a natural contrast, especially when it is bright out. The natural light will also have a similar effect as greenery or foliage by opening and warming up the space. 

2. Focus on your wall color

You should use your wall color to bring out the contrast in the room if you’re looking to use dark furniture. The color white will always work on walls. It’s important to play around with different shades of white however, to find what fits best in your space. A completely different approach that will also be successful is darkly colored walls with light furniture, like the fabulous deep green kitchen!

3. Add greenery and foliage 

Placing greenery and foliage, even if it’s fake, is one of the easiest ways to still achieve a bright space while using dark colors. The greenery helps to make the space appear more open and welcoming. The green will add a nice pop of color as well if there is not a lot of color in your space.

via The Girl with the Green Sofa

4. Let accessories brighten up the space 

Accessories can help a lot in a space that is more dark than light. Adding accessories that contrast with the darker furniture can help brighten the space by providing small pops of color and uniqueness throughout the space.

5. Utilize lamps versus overhead lighting

You should place lamps around darker pieces of furniture. Lamps will add a warmer feeling than overhead lighting can provide, and will also be able to spotlight your key pieces of furniture.

6. Use contrasting rugs and textiles around dark furniture 

By placing a rug in front of a dark piece of furniture, it will add texture and color to the whole space. Adding textiles or throw blankets to a sofa or chair will help break up the dark colors. Both can add additional contrast to the space. Alternatively, try a dark colored rug to bring dimension into a space.

via Contemporary Rugs EU

Dark colors give a sense of mystery in a space and can be used successfully, but they do best if you can still achieve a bright and welcoming space. The tips laid out above are simple fixes to a space that just feels a bit too dark. Now decorating with dark colors can be a game changing asset to enhance your space with style.

Article by Lydia Berge – Interiors by Jacquin intern

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Low-Maintenance Surfaces For Your Next Bathroom Remodel

Bathrooms can be a real hassle to clean. They are usually somewhat cramped and feature a variety of different materials and surfaces that can require multiple different cleaners and pieces of equipment just to get the job done. If you’re looking to remodel your bathroom but you’d also like to cut down on the level of maintenance you need to perform, here are some low-maintenance surfaces you can use for your next bathroom remodel. 

1. Engineered Quartz Countertops

There’s a reason why quartz bathroom countertops are in high demand. Their natural beauty is astounding, and quartz itself is very durable and low-maintenance. You don’t have to worry about sealing it because quartz is non-porous. It also stands up very well against heat. This is another low-maintenance material that has the added benefit of being supremely beautiful. 

2. Solid Surface Fabrication

This material is man-made and usually consists of a combination of pigments, polyester resins, acrylic, or epoxy. Solid surface is great because not only is it very low-maintenance and durable, it can be fitted for vanities, sinks, shower walls, countertops, and more. Solid surface shower panels are becoming a trend as well. The material itself is very versatile and can be customized to the highest degree. It’s also easier to clean because it features no grooves, grout, or tiles. A basic cleaner will do just fine. 

3. Spot-Free Glass

Innovation in glass-making technology has led to the latest development in low-maintenance bathrooms, spot-free shower glass. This glass is built to resist spots that naturally build up on other materials and cause those ugly shower spots. With spot-free glass, you don’t have to worry about using any special cleaners or applying a fancy coating to your shower glass to prevent it from spotting. Your cleaning time will be reduced dramatically as well. 

4. Stainless Steel Finishes

Unless you absolutely need the shiny finish of polish or chrome, installing stainless steel will lessen your faucet cleaning duties. Stainless steel and other surfaces like satin nickel as well as satin chrome are far better at hiding fingerprints and water spots, meaning you won’t need to wash them as often to get the same effect. 

You could also consider going with a single lever faucet. These faucets aren’t quite as much of a chore to clean as faucets with two handles and a spout. They only feature a single mounting point on your countertop which means less to navigate around as you do a wipe down. 

Cleaning Your Bathroom Doesn’t Have to be Hard

You shouldn’t have to dread cleaning day when it comes to your bathroom. Many people do because they have things like tiled showers or granite countertops that require extra attention. By implementing a few of the things in this article, however, you can cut your bathroom cleaning time in half. Solid surface fabrication, stainless steel faucets, spot-free glass, and quartz bathroom countertops will all make your life much easier and leave you with more time to do other things besides cleaning. 

Matt Lee is the owner of the Innovative Construction and Building Materials blog and a content writer for the building materials industry. He is focused on helping fellow homeowners, contractors, and architects discover materials and methods of construction that save money, improve energy efficiency, and increase property value.