Suzanne Meyer Pistorius of BlugirlArt gives new life to old chairs.
Taking inspiration from the chairs’ shape and color, she hand-paints gorgeous fabric for each piece.
BlugirlArt is the fulfillment of artist Suzanne Meyer Pistorius’ dream job. After ten years of working in technical design, she decided it was time to take the plunge and return to her first love – Fabric painting. During the summer of 2008, she created her first collection of recycled chairs. After she spent many hours stripping and sanding it was goodbye manicure! The chairs were then sent to the refinisher for expert repair and paintwork. Some of the chairs she literally rescued from a certain death by termites or simple neglect. When she looks at her collection, she’s thrilled beyond words - her dream has been realized.
The hardest part of her endeavor is creating the artwork for the chairs. The chair, its shape and color are her primary inspirations. She uses four different base cloths, each responding differently to paint. Sometimes Suzanne paints sample ideas and color ways. Other times she stares at the blank fabric for ages, while willing inspiration. And on other occasions, the Betsy sofa for example, she had a very clear idea of what she wanted to design. Depending on the size of the piece, painting the fabric can take up to two days to complete. When she’s painting the fabric, she paints specific sections for each part of the chair – she calls it random-but-placed design.
With the fabric designed, the chairs are then off to be upholstered –she’s very fortunate to have found someone who understands her vision for the finished piece. The end product is cohesive in design but not traditional in upholstery print placement. Once the chairs have been upholstered – she then treats the fabric with a protectant that’s in keeping with her “Green” philosophy. The final result of her labors is wondrous to behold. -- Photography by Dan Minicucci.
BlugirlArt is on the web at www.blugirlart.com
Boston Design Center
One Design Center Place, Suite 329
Boston, MA 02210