So glad you stopped by!
I've been painting with watercolors for several years and sell my art (as prints and canvases) in my 2 Etsy Shops.
Previous to this - I painted murals in the Chicago area for 20 years.
You can follow me on instagram to see my new watercolor art - including whimsical children's art, personalized prints and canvases, wine art and minimalist modern farmhouse watercolors.
Inspired by the miles and miles of farmland surrounding my home studio in Elburn, IL - I painted this serene landscape scene. There's a matching print (shown below) which features a rustic old barn. Visit my Etsy shop, Art Prints by Debbie, to see more!
Set of 2 Farmhouse Prints - perfect for your kitchen or living room. Prints and canvases come in sizes up to 24 x 36" -
They will make a perfect focal point over your bed or fireplace!
Please visit my Etsy shop to see my watercolor prints!
I recently painted this safari themed nursery mural in a Chicago Suburban home. The parents wanted lots of animals (and 2 golden-doodles!) so their little guy would have lots of things to look at and learn to identify. The challenge was to paint animals that were realistic but not 'scary'. I did this by using soft colors, rounded edges and subtle details. Painting realistic 'eyes' can make an animal look almost too realistic so I purposely kept it a little more whimsical.
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I'm so excited to introduce my latest prints - for little boy's 'Pickup Truck or Fishing Themed' nursery or bedroom!
The General Store print can be totally personalized in 3 different places. You can be as creative as you want - including your town, etc.. The 3 places you can personalize are the large store sign, the truck's side panel and the Post Office. The truck's side panel is a perfect place to personalize with Logging Co, Auto Repair, etc..
The log cabin print is set in a wooded wonderland - with pine trees, a log cabin with campfire and (best of all) a little boy fishing (wearing a buffalo plaid shirt) with his dog. There is a sign on the log cabin that can have the boy's name.
Here's an example of personaliztion:
I love the popular new buffalo plaid crib bedding and tried to create original watercolor prints that captured life in the country, mountains or woods - that would coordinate with red plaid but be unique. Little boys love dogs and fishing and who doesn't love to roast marshmallows at a campfire?
I've used the general store from a small town in Alaska as inspiration for my General Store. I then added a vintage red truck because - well, I just love red trucks and so does my grandson.
Having a sister that lives in the Northwoods of Wisconsin, I've been lucky enough to spend a lot of time walking through paths in the woods and looking at all the beautiful log and lake homes. So, one of my goals in designing these prints, was to give people living in these lovely wooded areas of the country - artwork for their child's room that was different and realistic. I wanted to create real scenes that are reminiscent of the little towns that dot the country - in places like Maine, Colorado, Minnesota, California, Indiana ... the list goes on and on!
If you'd like to order this set of prints (or canvases) - or just want to check out my nursery & children's prints (including Paris, London, Hot Air Balloons and more!), please visit my Etsy Shop:
To see the children's prints, please visit my Etsy Shop.
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I painted this 'Sports Locker' for a 7 year old boy's new bedroom. It was fun doing this project because he helped design the mural - by choosing his favorite players and then choosing what his jersey would be (team, name, number).
A sports locker is a great idea - if you want to capture different sports and feature your son's favorite players. We added a few fun items - like a water bottle, cleats, football, pads, baseball and bat, helmet and soccer ball - to even add more whimsy.
This mural should last for years - since I'm pretty sure he'll never outgrow his love of sports!
I live in Elmhurst and have been painting murals for over 20 years so - if you live in the Chicagoland area and are interested in getting a quote on a child's or nursery mural (or for any room in your house) please call or email me.
You can see more examples of my work on this blog or on my website.
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Have you every wanted a beautiful mural in your kitchen - but couldn't figure out where to put it because you had very little wall space? Well, here's a great solution! Just paint a mural over the top of your cabinets. This is especially great if you have higher ceilings, as many new homes do.
I hand painted this mural - trying to get a Tuscan or French farmhouse feel. But actually, the mural 'scene' could be anywhere. I also hand painted the fork and spoon and stenciled 'Bon Appetit - using a custom (one time use) stencil - from The Mad Stencilist.
I have been painting murals in the Chicago area for the last 20 years -focusing mainly on nursery murals (because a nursery mural is a fantastic way to bring life to the walls in your baby's room).
If you live in the suburbs of Chicago and are interested in a mural quote, please email me or give me a call. I'll be glad to give you a 'ballpark' estimate, once I know the details of what you are interested in.
I recently 'transformed' an oven hood (in a newly remodeled kitchen) in Lombard, Illinois. My customers absolutely gorgeous kitchen needed that perfect 'statement piece' and she decided that the oven hood should be that piece.
To get the 'Old World' rustic look - I first applied a rough coat of aquastone. After that dried, I glazed the whole hood. I also glazed the wood trim piece at the bottom of the hood.
I then hand painted a design (that I created), drew that onto the hood then painted with a cream color (to match her cabinets).
Finally, I used a little of the glaze mix to 'age' the white paint.
As you can see, the hood now looks like it has been there for (hundreds of??) years!
To get a better idea of the 'transformation', here is a photo of the before and after.
If you live in the Chicagoland area and are interested in a quote on decorative faux finish or mural, please call or email me! You can find contact information (or more examples of my work) by clicking on the link to my website.
Call 630-841-1960 or email CeroneDesigns@gmail.com
If you are interested in trying to do this finish yourself - here are the step by step instructions:
Products - 1 Gallon Aquastone (crushed marble) by Faux Effects, 2 quarts of Benjamin Moore Regal Select Paint (one in the dark glaze color and one in the white cabinet color), 1 quart of glaze, trowels, plaster tray, large and small brushes, buckets with lids, rags and a dry towel and gloves.
Step 1. Mix just enough paint with the aquastone to color it. Make sure it is lighter than the glaze - so that you can see depth when you glaze it. Tape and cover cabinets with plastic.Trowel on the stone. This is probably the hardest part, as you want it to cover all but not be too thick. You also want it fairly smooth but with some texture areas. Remove all tape, carefully. Do not let the stone dry on the tape.
Step 2. After your troweled stone has dried (at least 24 hours) - re-tape and cover with plastic. This part is very messy!! Now spray the area with water (or use a wet rag to apply, which is what I did). Brush the glaze over entire area that you are working on (like left side of hood). Work quickly! Then use another brush to blend in and a DRY towel to blot off. Try to do this one time and not go back to touch up as you can get a 'burn' mark - where you actually remove the glaze. Do each area (left, front, right) separately and dab off extra glaze on edges as needed.
Step 3. After glaze has dried (24 hours or more) - you can draw your design and hand paint. I used a white watercolor pencil and drew very lightly.
I suggest always doing a sample board but keep in mind that it's always much harder to do a large surface than a sample board. So, have all your equipment ready and be ready to work fast.
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If your little princess loves tea parties, castles, bunnies, flowers and enchanted gardens - then this set of 4 prints will be perfect for her 'fairy themed bedroom'! All of my prints are fine art reproductions of original watercolors and are also available on museum-wrapped canvas.
To see my nursery prints , please visit myEtsy Shop.
I just had to paint the charming patisserie in Paris, known for the best cream puffs in Paris. ODETTE is one of my all time favorite pastry shops!
As shown in this photo, you can have your print personalized with a girl's name of your choice. If you do not want it personalized - it can say 'ODETTE'.
Alls of my prints and canvases are fine art reproductions of original watercolor paintings (by me!). As many of my other travel-themed paintings - my Odette print includes a cute dog and lots of flowers!
My travel themed prints include Paris, Italy, London, New York, Chicago and hot air balloons (with cute baby safari animals). Many of prints can be personalized - so they make perfect focal points for your child's bedroom or nursery!
I'm also selling my Odette print as part of a 'set of 2' - sold with my Provence flower market print. The flower market shows a typical French flower market - overflowing with lush baskets of flowers. A little Parisian girl walks down the lane - wearing a little dress and straw hat.
To see my nursery prints , please visit myEtsy Shop.
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Myles loves all kinds of sports! In fact, it was hard narrowing down his favorite 4 players. I have painted 2 previous murals for Myles and he was now finally old enough to help plan his own mural - to include things that he loved. As a part of his room transformation - we also hung a full wall of NFL fathead decals - hung in 8 rows - with each row being a different division.
If you live in Chicago or suburbs and are interested in a mural, please send me an email and I'll get back to you right away!
I recently painted this birch tree mural in the beautiful family room of one of my best customers! She already has something like 14 murals and paintings (done by me) but this wall was screaming out for something really striking. She has beautiful petrified wood end tables and blue, cream and green accents - so the colors of this mural looked perfect behind her leather sectional.
To personalize the mural, so that it had special meaning, I added 2 large eagles, 3 flying in the distance and 3 babies (in a nest) - waiting for mom to return with their dinner.
If you live in the Chicagoland area, and would like a mural, please send me an email and I will give you ballpark estimate. Note: This mural took 2 days.
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The little guy that sleeps in this nursery, just loves jungle animals! Mom has done a fantastic job of creating a sweet, relaxing safari nursery. The nursery is done in soft grays with touches of blue. The nursery mural gives a few pops of color and gives the young resident a lot to look at!
We decided to do 3 'baby' animals. There is a cute baby owl, young monkey (looking into crib) and adorable giraffe - munching on leaves of tree.
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Introducing my newest print, for sale in my Etsy shop (Nursery Rembrandts). There's St. Peter's Basilica in the background and a quaint Italian street scene - including a trattoria, bookstore, bike with flowers, cute dog and more!
Best of all, the trattoria can be personalized with girl's name of your choice. The example above is personalized with 'Sienna'.
I have several prints in this 'travel theme' - that include Paris, London, New York and Florence. So, you can buy one print or any combination in sets from 2 to 6.
To see the Rome print or my other travel themed prints, please visit my Etsy Shop.
Yes - I think all of us wine drinkers will agree - Wine IS poetry! Having grown up with an Italian father, who thought a little Chianti with dinner, would be be fine for a 10 year old - I remember him trying to order wine for me in an Italian restaurant and then arguing with the waitress - about how I was 16 years old and definitely old enough to drink wine.
He must have been upset that I never liked wine when I was young (and what 10 year old does??) but now that I've matured way beyond 10 - I really can't eat a dish of pasta without a nice glass of red wine. Plus, there's nothing better than a cold glass of Riesling, on a hot summer day.
Maybe because of my love of wine - I've designed several wine prints - available in my Etsy shop.
You can even have your own custom designed Wine Label Print - with your name, location & year! These make fabulous housewarming and holiday gifts for the wine lover in your family.
To see my Wine Label Art Prints or my other watercolor reproductions, click here to go to my Etsy Shop.
If you need a really cool custom, Handmade Wine Rack - check out Adlite Creations! They have gorgeous wine racks - many in dark woods but also some that are totally different than the usual wine racks seen in stores! Many hold bottles and glasses and many that are long and narrow - to fit any space.
To see Adlite's creations, click here to go to their Etsy Shop.
I've just finished my newest print - New York City! So excited to be starting my latest travel themed prints - which will soon include Rome.
These prints, as shown above, are available in 'Vintage/Shabby Chic' as well as the original pink palette.
The New York print features many iconic buildings - including our new One World Trade Center. The tea shop was inspired by New York's 'Alice's Tea Cup' and can be personalized with girl's name. This print would make a great gift for any little girl who loves travel!
To see the New York print or the set of 3 City Prints, please visit my Etsy Shop.
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Adorable, whimsical scene of Italian seaside village - with a Vespa scooter, sail boats, hillsides dotted with quaint homes, a bakery and - best of all - a Gelato Shop that can be personalized with your little girl or boy's name! This set would also be super cute in your Italian Kitchen.
Having several 'boy' grandsons, I wanted to add a set of 'Italian' prints that could be hung in a boy's bedroom. Painted in warm tones, with lots of red, these prints are not just for girls! In fact, there are boys and girls painted in front of the Gelato Shop - because, as we all know - boys like ice cream too.
The quaint Italian village could actually be any where in the Mediterranean or even a small lake village - like Lake Como. With little sail boats, a Vespa scooter, a bakery, and hillsides (dotted with homes and umbrellas on the beach) - this scene reminded me of Bellagio. So, if you love Italy like I do - these prints will make you smile every day.
To see this set of Italian Seaside Prints, please visit my Etsy Shop. I also have many other prints of Paris, London, Italy, Jungle Animals and much more.
Do you have high ceilings and a large area above your cabinets - that's just crying out for 'something'? Painting a mural up there might be just the answer!
I painted this country scene in very subtle tones - to look like it might be Tuscany at sunrise or Napa Valley. Then, I hand painted a large fork and spoon and stenciled 'Bon Appetit!' to give the kitchen a modern flare.
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My customer wanted to 'liven up' her long hallway - so I painted a Trompe L'oeil Window, with wrought iron shutters, at the end of hall!
Below, are two more window murals (with white windows and shutters) that I painted in the same home. This is a large wall that is directly opposite their sofa in living room. Customer is delighted that she has a beautiful view to look out onto!
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I spent most of the month of June, in my garage, painting 5 doors! Each door features a different 'scene' from beautiful Grand Haven, Michigan. The doors are: The Wooded Dunes (with 5 black squirrels), The Boardwalk, The Beach, The Pier (with iconic lighthouses) and The Channel (with Coast Guard Ship).
The doors will be installed in an upstairs hallway of an absolutely gorgeous cottage - which is on the bluff of Lake Michigan in Grand Haven, overlooking the dunes, boardwalk and beach - and is walking distance to the lighthouses. To keep some symmetry between the doors, I painted 'dune grass' in the bottom panel of each door.
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My sister, who is now volunteering with LOLA (Land O Lakes Art League, Land O Lakes, WI) - recently asked me if I would do a custom 'rendering' of what their future new LOLA building might look like. They wanted something whimsical - that reflected the 'look' of local buildings and the fact that this building would host dance, music and art classes. The watercolor above is the result of many hours of 'brain storming'!
I recently painted this Memorial Wall Mural & Custom Stencil at the beautiful new Fire House in Janesville, Wisconsin. The Chief, Randy Banker, wanted to feature the photos of their 4 fallen fire fighters, along with an inspirational quote, for their brave firefighters (next to fire pole) so it would be seen the firefighters every day.
It was an honor to be able to do this!
"Thank you for sharing the gift of your talents with the Janesville Fire Department. The memoriam wall ........ turned out fantastic!"
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Grandma wanted her 'soon to be' new granddaughter to have an adorable Winnie the Pooh Nursery. They also wanted a nursery that would last through any new babies to join the family in the future. I combined a modern day Tigger with several classic characters (like Winnie the Pooh in a tree, Christopher reading a book and Eeyore).
If you live in the Chicago Suburban area, and are interested in a mural for your child (or grandchild!), please give me a contact me any time. Consultations and 'ballpark' estimates are always free.
NEW! Wine Label Art - Personalized with all your information.
These custom fine art prints are perfect for your wine cellar, bar, family room - or make the perfect gift for your favorite wine lover!
All of my wine label art prints feature a 'reproduction' of one of my watercolor paintings. The 2 prints shown in this post - feature my contemporary red wine print and my new Napa Valley vineyard landscape.
To see my Wine Label Art Prints or my other watercolor reproductions, click here to go to my Etsy Shop.
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My newest print is a reproduction of an original watercolor painting of the Tiffany store in the Eaton Chagrin Boulevard Shopping Center in Ohio. It's perfect for a woman's bathroom or bedroom - or as a much loved housewarming gift!
This print would also be super cute in girl's bedroom - especially if she appreciates a nice diamond!
I found this great blog post explaining why every girl loves a little blue box!
If you ever find yourself on the other side of the world, in Singapore, you have to try this great French restaurant. It's called Brasserie Gavroche and it's located at 66 Tras Street. The food is absolutely delicious and very authentic - including (of course!) escargot.
When we left the restaurant, I knew I just had to paint this storefront! I painted it to look like it was in Paris, or possibly even Provence - and filled the painting with colorful flowers. A little bit of 'artistic license' made a more colorful (and French looking) watercolor.
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I found a great article in Huffington Post, about how beautiful Paris is in the Spring and there are tons of fabulous photos.
The first photo, showing the Eiffel Tower behind glorious cherry blossoms, reminds me of my Eiffel Tower Paris print (shown below).
To see this set of Paris Prints (which make the perfect gift for little girl and can be personalized with girl's name!), please visit my Etsy Shop. I also have prints of London, Italy, Jungle Animals and much more.
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Adorable Pink ParisPatisserie Print - Inspired by Laduree of Paris
This Paris print is a fine art reproduction of an original watercolor painting. Perfect for your little girl's Paris themed nursery or bedroom - or Paris themed baby shower! You can personalize the awning with girl's name to make it even more special.
All of my prints are available in 6 (standard) sizes - from 5x7 to poster size and there is never a charge for personalization.
If you love this print - check out my set of 4 pink Paris prints!Including an Eiffel Tower print that can be personalized with girl's name, the iconic Arch de Triomphe and a cute French cafe and boutique with flower cart. You can buy any of these prints by themselves or as part of a set.
To order a Paris print (choose from 8 different prints) or just check out my original children's art prints
(including jungle and farm animals, Italy, London & more!) - click the link below:
After many requests for original watercolor paintings - you can now buy any of my Etsy children's prints as a hand painted original - which will be painted and signed by myself. The watercolors will come on 9x12" 140lb. Arches watercolor paper and the price is $125.
Your original watercolors will be shipped in a flat, ridged mailer by Priority Mail (in USA) and make a great baby shower gift! (I also ship Internationally now.)
To order an original watercolor or just check out my original children's art prints
(including jungle and farm animals, Paris, London & more!) - click the link below:
First of all, I want to wish everyone a Happy New Year - as this is my first post of 2016!
I have made only 3 New Years Resolutions for the New Year and 'blogging every week' is one of the 3. I know we're half way through January - but, hey, I just made this resolution yesterday!
Since my 2nd resolution was to paint every week - I found that I had to 'stretch' some watercolor paper. So, here is the process that I have developed (mainly because I couldn't afford an expensive 'paper stretching' frame!).
Before I get into the process (in case you're new to watercolor painting) - let me explain the basic concept and why it's so important. Unless you are painting on extremely expensive and 'hard to find' 300 lb. watercolor paper, the paper will buckle when you apply water. However, if you stretch the paper first - you can go crazy adding as much water and paint as you want - and your paper will stay flat. By thoroughly wetting the paper and then securing it to a flat surface - it will not be able to shrink as it dries. Voila! Buckle proof paper!
Note about paper: I like to use a good quality 140 lb. paper, like Arches. You can stretch any paper but I guess I'm a believer that you get what you pay for. I also love to paint on Bristol board and I also stretch that. Bristol board has a smooth, slick surface and will give you completely different results. It's harder to use but I love the look.
The materials you will need to make your 'stretcher' are as follows:
1. A thick piece of acrylic, cut 1" (length and width) larger than your paper. I bought mine at a local Ace Hardware.
2. Metal strips (about an inch wide). Note: The shorter metal pieces should be at least 2" shorter than shortest acrylic side. The longer metal pieces can be the same length as long edge of acrylic.
3. Strong, big paper clips. I bought a large box of 2" clips at my local office supply store.
Soak your paper in clean sink or flat plastic pan. Use warm water and soak paper for app. 2-3 minutes. I have seen a lot of variance in the amount of time recommended to soak paper but 3 minutes for me seems to be best. If you soak the paper any longer, the 'starch' on the paper will rub off.
Remove your paper from water (letting excess water drain for a few seconds, into the sink) by holding it by one corner. Then carefully center your wet paper on the acrylic. Smooth lightly with a clean sponge and dab with a clean paper towel, making sure to dab excess water off edge of paper and acrylic.
Put your metal strips on each edge - covering no more than 1/8" of paper.
Secure the metal strips with your clips, making sure to put a lot of clips and a clip on each corner. See Example. Then, let dry for 24 hours.
I have stretched paper, using only clips and acrylic, and it actually worked. The problem with this method is that you will have little 'clip' indentations on the edge of your paper and I'm not sure the paper dries quite as evenly and flat.
So, there you are - your paper is stretched and you're ready to pour on the paint!