Posts filed under ‘Mid Century Modern’

Tile Warehouse Sale in Santa Cruz, CA Saturday March 5th

Modwalls Tile Warehouse Sale in Aptos, CA
Saturday, March 5th, 2016

Continue Reading March 4, 2016 at 12:43 pm Leave a comment

Glass Mosaic Tile Design You Can Create Online

Modwalls’ Online Tile blender lets you design your own colored mosaic tile blend.

Continue Reading February 22, 2016 at 4:44 pm Leave a comment

Putting the LUSH in Luscious Glass Tile

Are you in the process of selecting the perfect Lush® glass subway tile color for your project?

Selecting the right  tile color can be difficult  – especially from a computer screen!  We find ourselves regularly attempting to describe the nuances of similar Lush® colors over the phone, and trust me, it’s not easy!

In an effort to help make this process a little easier, we’ve taken these pictures to compare the subtle variations of our most popular Lush® colors.

Enjoy!

Modwalls_Cameo Almond Driftwood Dune Reef Taupe

  • Cameo is our latest neutral addition.  We would describe this as a rich, creamy color.  It evokes a real warmth – like coffee with lots of creamer in it.  Yummmmmy!
  • Almond is slightly more golden-beige than Cameo.  Goes well with lots of earth-tone granites.
  • Driftwood is a gray-ish beige color with a faint hint of green.  It’s definitely the chameleon of our neutral colors and tends to go with all sorts of materials and design aesthetics.
  • Dune is the most golden of our neutral colors. We often say it’s more peachy/beige/buttercream-y.
  • Reef is a rich brown color…like a freshly roasted coffee bean.  In some lighting conditions, it appears to have a hint of green.
  • Taupe is a gorgeous warm gray color.  (One of my personal favorites actually :)).

Cloud thru Bluebell

  • Cloud is our white-est white possible in our Lush® line.  Made of clear glass, this is truly a white glass subway tile (which we know is hard to find!)
  • Breaker is a beautiful light and bright medium aqua blue color.
  • Vapor is our most pale, watery blue color.
  • Sky is a true sky-blue color.  Think of how the sky looks on a clear and bright Spring day.  A very cheerful shade of blue…
  • Rain  is tranquil blue gray.  It reminds me of a lighter shade of denim as well…or indigo.
  • Bluebell is a super fun and vivid periwinkle-blue color.

Cloud thru Peacock

  • Pool is a nice balance of aqua + blue together.  It’s more saturated than the previous blue colors above.  Pool Frosted has a softer and somewhat lighter appearance because of the frosted surface finish.
  • Surf has more green than aqua coloring and it’s one of our most popular Lush® colors.  Goes beautifully with a variety of design aesthetics.
  • Seagrass is a more saturated version of Surf.
  • Peacock is a lovely jewel toned turquoise/ blue/ green color.

Cloud thru Inkwell

  • Rain is tranquil blue gray.  It reminds me of a lighter shade of denim as well…or indigo.  
  • Fog Bank is one of our most popular gray colors.  It has a cooler base tone to it so the tile can sometime appear more blue. It’s a very calming color.
  • Storm is a darker gray color.  This also has a cooler base tone to it like our Fog Bank.
  • Taupe is a gray beige color. Warmer by comparison than Fog Bank.
  • Inkwell is a beautiful saturated inky-blue color.

Cloud thru Moss

  • Wasabi is a very wasabi colored green:).  Still bright and vivid, it’s one of our softer looking greens by comparison.
  • Surf has more green than aqua coloring and it’s one of our most popular Lush® colors.  Goes beautifully with a variety of design aesthetics.
  • Bamboo is a fresh medium spring green color.  When comparing to Lemongrass, we say it has less yellow to it.
  • Seagrass is a more saturated version of Surf.  When comparing Seagrass to our other greens, it appears to have more blue in it.  I’d also describe it as a celedon green color.
  • Lemongrass is our most bright and vivid lime-y green color.
  • Peacock is a lovely turquoise/ blue/ green color.
  • Moss is an earthy olive green color.

One last look at all these beautiful colors….

Modwalls_Cameo Almond Driftwood Dune Reef TaupeCloud thru BluebellCloud thru PeacockCloud thru InkwellCloud thru Moss

Of course we also offer brights like Poppy Orange, Butter Yellow and Tomato Red.

And sizes from 1×2 to 6×12 now made in North America.

Check out our entire Lush subway tile collection and order samples.

We want you to Live Your Colors with Modwalls Tile.

Creating colorful modern tile since 2005.

January 26, 2016 at 4:06 pm Leave a comment

Janet Bennett: A Life in Design

Janet Bennett“Are you the artist Janet Bennett?” Bennett is a striking and elegant woman who looks quite at home in the colorful surroundings of Robert, the restaurant housed within the Museum of Arts and Design in Manhattan. But perhaps the question should have been, “are you the artist who designed the iconic tile murals in the Los Angeles Airport?”

The murals have been widely attributed to Charles Kratka who was Bennett’s immediate supervisor. “When I found out about the obituary for him in the L.A. Times which said that Charles Kratka was the designer of the LAX murals, I freaked out.” By her own admission, she’d never claimed credit for the murals which were installed in 1961, when she was working for the architectural firm of Pereira & Luckman.

Mad Men Mural

LAX MURALS” Mad Men Promo Image. Photo: Frank Ockenfels 3/AMC

Her assignment, given to her by Kratka, was to design a mural that would distract people from how long the tunnels were. The 2007 L.A. Times obituary mentions that Kratka told his children that the changing colors of the mural were to reflect the changing seasons, but Bennett said that actually her concept was to express the changing terrain as seen from a transcontinental flight, “from ocean to ocean.”

“I started with blue on one side, then green, then into earth colors, then,

Janet in Blue

Janet Bennett

in the middle, I had one red element; then the colors reverse. My idea was that you’d see the same colors going from the ocean to the middle of the country, over the prairie, then back to the ocean.” The mural has been featured in both film and TV, from The Graduate to Mad Men. “It’s been used as a vehicle to show people coming in and out of Los Angles; it’s an ideal background because of the procession of colors.” Overall, Bennett created mosaic designs for five terminal buildings found in the airport.

IMG_0400 (2)

A Janet Bennett Painting

Bennett grew up in Detroit; her father was a painter. He discouraged her from becoming an artist due to concerns about making a living. “He had been successful as a painter, but there came a time when he had to think about money, so he went into automobile design. For him, (designing for automobiles) was like interior design for me. He was okay at it, but he didn’t have a passion for it because he was a painter, as I was a sculptor, and am now a painter.”

JB Paint wave

Janet Bennett

Bennett studied at the Cranbrook Academy of Art which is known as one of America’s leading architecture and design schools, with its graduates and faculty being described by the New York Times as having a “profound effect on the physical environment of this country.” Bennett majored in sculpting and upon graduating, came to New York City to work on commissions, one of which was a bronze sculpture for the department store B. Altman & Co. Once completed, she was called to Madrid for further study before finding herself back in the states, working in architecture.

“It was an ideal job for someone like me.” Her work took her to Los Angeles, San Salvador, “I love anything Spanish,” San Francisco, Honolulu, and back to New York. “My sculpture commissions were always in different mediums, using different materials – whether it was steel, or

IMG_0406 (2)

Janet Bennett

plastic, or wood – I really had to learn as I was doing. I’ve gone to a couple shows at this museum (The Museum of Art and Design) and I’ve thought, ‘I’ve done that once, but this artist has made a whole career out of it.’ If I had stayed with one thing, people could look at it and say, ‘that’s a Janet Bennett.’”

In addition to the LAX murals, Bennett was one of the contributors to San

Brio Blends

Modwalls Brio Blend Glass Tiles

Francisco’s BART stations in the late 60’s and early 70’s when a panel of art professionals commissioned murals and other art for nearly all of the then newly designed stations.“The tiles for the San Francisco murals were ceramic, as opposed to the Italian glass used at the airport.” When she wasn’t doing mural work or designing decorative art, she worked in interior design. “That’s where I ran into some restrictions. When I was doing the commissioned artwork, I pretty much had full reign. With the murals, there were no influences other than driven by theme.”

JB Dogs

Janet Bennett

At 83, Bennett is now working in acrylics. “I like things that are malleable. That’s what I like about oils. Mixing them; they’re nice and squishy.” She works both in New York City and “on the Island” (Long Island) and finds inspiration everywhere.

“Artists are much more observant. I walk my dog in the park and things are happening. A big crane is taking something down, a people thing is happening, and no one is looking. I’m always looking. If you have an artistic temperament, you’re sort of a voyeur.”

I ask her if she’s tried to contact the airport about receiving credit for the LAX murals. ”Anytime I try to follow up, they say, ‘can you document it?’ It was so many years ago; I’ve lived in so many places, thrown out files, or books, or photographs. Everyone I worked with was older than I, and they’re not around anymore.”

Mosaic Tunnel

Bennett is quick to point out that she wouldn’t have minded if the architecture firm had been credited. “Working for an architectural firm is like working for a fashion house – you can design it, but it goes out under the name of the firm.” The discomfort that Bennett feels is in having another person receive credit for a design she conceived. She sighs, “I never thought about publicity. I remember a magazine contacting me (after creating the mural) but I was busy with something else.”

Janet Bennett with daughter

Janet Bennett with her daughter

Bennett has been creating art for over sixty years and is still evolving, still exploring design, color and texture. Perhaps, if you find yourself passing through the midcentury mosaic tunnels in LAX, you’ll find yourself thinking, “I know what that is. That’s a Bennett.”

Micheline Auger is a playwright and freelance writer living in New York who loves art, color, and all things Modwalls.

December 5, 2015 at 5:22 pm Leave a comment

Spring Sale of Glass Subway Tile & Mosaics at Modwalls

Lush Brio Sale 2015

 

Cloud thru Peacock

 

Lush Glass Subway Tile

gardner and rocks ahill_2

5c082-10560998_790732534300737_156446720_n

May 5, 2015 at 3:10 pm Leave a comment

Craftsman Detail = Simplicity, Quality and Passion

semihandmade tileJohn McDonald is the owner of Semihandmade which is an innovative company that makes one-of-a-kind doors for IKEA kitchens, bathroom, closets and media cabinets. Modwalls spoke with John about how he started the company and the best way to incorporate craftsman touches in your remodel.

“I had been in LA for about 13 years working freelance in the film biz doing writing and production (mainly waiting tables).  At 34, I started buying old furniture, refinishing it and selling at swap meets. Then I moved on to making custom furniture and cabinetry.”

John transitioned to making doors from IKEA cabinets about five years ago and because of the demand, his company expanded to include 30 employees. The concept is simple and brilliant. You want that IKEA kitchen but not so crazy about the doors that come with the cabinets? What do you do? Simple:

“You don’t have to buy them,” says John. “All you do is just buy the boxes and hardware and we’ll make the amazing fronts, panels and tops so you get a really custom look for less.”

Rex Rox Lunar SemiHandmadeJohn’s philosophy when it comes to design is to keep it as simple and clean as possible. “I can’t stand precious and overly thought-out.” He’s passionate and opinionated about what he does, which has made his company a success within the industry and a favorite among clients.

“I always make it a point to seek out other companies I like. Modwalls makes a clean  tile product that is really well-made with great colors and excellent customer service. We’ve used their tiles at different design shows to compliment our booths. We also recommend their stuff to clients we think it will appeal to. Some of their new stuff is really amazing!”

So what do you do if you want to incorporate craftsman touches but you’re on a budget?

“The key is trying to have a few nice things you’ll hopefully have for a long time, then building around that.  The fact that IKEA is our platform says all you need to know about us. They’ve got a great system, really solid bones, and they are genius to let people compliment things as they like.”

Teal Agate semihandmadeSo whether it’s colorful ceramic tile or semi-handmade zebrawood cabinets, pick a product you love, a company you believe in, and have fun. Anything else?

“Remodeling is a marathon. Be prepared for that!”

Have a Modwalls’ design question? Ask and we will answer!  www.modwalls.com

 

December 19, 2014 at 9:49 am 1 comment

Shiny Happy Yellow Tile

“How wonderful Yellow is. It stands for the Sun.” – Van Gogh
#tile #livewithcolor #buytileonline           Modwalls.com

November 23, 2014 at 12:29 pm Leave a comment

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Rebecca Lonergan


Founder and Creative Director of modwalls.com, a designer of modern tile with an online showroom at www.modwalls.com. Modwalls are colorful tile designs with a uniquely modern sensibility in a wide range of materials.

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