Rusty Arena

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Rusty’s art background combined with an inherently rebellious nature have resulted in a gorgeous body of work that blurs distinction between fine and decorative arts.  A Houston native, his interest in classical art and architecture took him on a journey traveling the world.  He’s returned with his signature style that combines hand-painting and hand-printing techniques.

Beautiful, rich and luscious are all words that describe Arena products. They have a quality of depth that can be attributed to their unique production techniques.  Rusty is dedicated to preserving and developing new hand printing techniques that are impossible to replicate through computer generated imagery. The technical capabilities of Rusty’s facility can be attributed to the engineering brilliance of his brother who designed and built custom curing units that allow for the creation of durable and colorfast textile products.

Rusty has created designs that have a fresh modern feel but are clearly rooted in a great appreciation and understanding of classic design.  The above patterns are printed on linen further enhancing the natural and handmade feel of the product.  In addition to the Arena line, Rusty creates custom couture textiles and wall coverings for clients.

Rusty has the ability to see things in the natural world and imagine how elements would translate to different surfaces – printed on linen or embossed into velvet. His natural eye for color and content is evident in his work, as well as the technical skills that allow him to move between media with such ease.

The above swatches are from his wallcovering collection, he also has a collections of designs printed on jute, linen and velvet.  And have I mentioned that he is also a sculptor, painter, designer and enjoys cooking – kind of a renaissance man, wouldn’t you agree ?  Stop by our Houston store on August 30th to meet Rusty in person and learn more about where he finds inspiration to create so many beautiful things.

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Arena Design website

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Alexandra Becket

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Alexandra is a textile designer turned home renovation specialist and interior designer.  In 2010, she and her husband started ModOp, a renovation company that modernizes distressed properties.  Once the renovation is complete, Alexandra stages the property utilizing customized artwork and accessories that she creates; the result appears as an effortless combination of her skills as an artist / textile designer and interior designer.

The area outside this Los Feliz condo unit is lush and green; Alexandra has effectively brought this environment indoors through the use of her hand painted silk textiles.  I especially love the reupholstered seat cushions on the vintage dining chairs. Her work reflects a great affection towards mid-century modern design.

After completely a rather extensive renovation of this Spanish Bungalow, Alexandra put her interior skills to work.  She masterfully combines seemingly disparate patterns in the patchwork kilim rug and the wingback chair covered in her custom textile design.  For the complete story of this renovation, check out the LA Times story here.

Above are few examples of Alexandra’s textile designs. She uses a process similar to batik where a water-based resist is used first to draw the design. The design is painted over with water-based paints that she mixes to create her custom palette.  Once the artwork is heat set, the resist disappears leaving a “reveal” or the lines of the design.  It’s not difficult to see why her one-of-kind prints have been acquired by home décor and fashion clients including Anthropologie, Trina Turk, Pottery Barn and more.

Alexandra’s artwork frequency focuses on architecture.  She finds inspiration throughout the varied landscape of her hometown, Los Angeles.  As the granddaughter of Welton Becket, the architect who designed some of L.A.’s most famous landmarks (Capitol Records, the Music Center, the Beverly Hilton, the Pan Pacific Auditorium, and others) she is influenced by the geometry of modernism, the sharp angles and graceful curvature.  The top image of Capitol Records pays tribute to her Grandfather in her own talented, artistic way.

Meet Alexandra in person, hear more about her current projects and have the opportunity to see some of her custom home accessories in person!  I, for one, think that these will be hitting some hip LA interior shops soon (and beyond) but I guess we will have to wait and see wait Alexandra has to say about that !  August 30th at the FLOR West Hollywood store.

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Alexandra Becket’s website

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Bonnee Sharp

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Bonnee’s career has taken her from advertising copy writer in New York to interior designer in L.A.  Her quest for just the right pattern and material led her to the creation of her own designs.  Studio Bon, based here in Dallas, is the realization of her true entrepreneurial and artistic calling.

The Studio Bon textile collection ranges from etchy florals to graphic geometrics.  Bonnee draws inspiration from the simple beauty of familiar objects – iron handrails to interlocking threads.  Her eye is always busy noticing the delicate symmetries in the world around her.  She takes great pride in the fact that each of her unique patterns is printed, one painstaking yard at a time, by artisans in the United States.

Bonnee’s beautiful home has been featured on Design Sponge here and in Rue magazine here (starting on page 216, it’s worth seeking out as her home is stunning and we love the image of Bonnee with her with her two beautiful daughters, who now have a baby brother named Beck!) She has inspired us to think more about those family heirlooms – I can think of a few that are currently gathering dust in a garage.  Take a look below and see how she has updated an unmatched chair and stool that belonged to her her grandparents – first, the wood frames were lacquered in black and then she reupholstered them in, Ellen, a fabric from her collection named after her sister.  What a wonderful way to make family heirlooms and “hand-me-downs” work in a modern home.  She has an incredible eye for mixing old and new, high and low and giving it the feel that it has been that way forever.  We are fans.

Bonnee is a consumate professional, always one step ahead and the fact that she has three young children at home makes this all the more impressive.  In mid-August, she is staging an area of our Dallas store with a vignette showcasing her new collection – we feel truly honored and will be sure to post some images right here.  She has us totally intrigued about her new work :  Inspiration boards jam-packed with pics of dreamy jewel-box interiors, color forecasts, paint chips, bits of ribbon, interesting textures, twigs and leaves, and endlessly morphing geometric shapes have all contributed to our soon-to-launch collection. Selecting the perfect patterns is such a difficult task when you are busy day-dreaming of the possibilities… what fun we’ve had!

If you happen to be in the Dallas area, what could be more delightful than stopping by the FLOR store to meet Bonnee in person and get a sneak peek of her new collection?

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Studio Bon website
Bonnee’s blog

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