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Chicago Institute of Fine Finishes
504 East St. Charles Rd,
Carol Stream, IL 60188
Toll Free: 800-797-4305
Phone: 630-653-2400
FAX: 630-653-4671


Paint IT! or Stain IT! refinishing furniture, you can paint it or stain it.

Chicago's Decorative Arts: Newsletter for Faux By Kathy faux finishing faux school faux elearning

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call 630-653-2400!

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Decortive Artist School Decorative Arts marbling and graining techniques

Two Extraordinary Product Lines Come Together

Several months ago, Paint It! ™ made its debut and was virtually impossible to keep on the shelves. Word spread quickly about how this innovative furniture décor paint lays on flat with great adhesion and no chalky feeling.

With Paint It!™ there is no sanding, priming, or bonding required. It is ready to use right out of the can and can be applied on any surface.

These incredible benefits save time and money.

Paint It!™ can be topped with many finishing options. However, we have found Beautiful™ to be a perfect paring.

Before: Paint It with Beautiful™ Clear Glaze
After: Paint It with Beautiful™ Clear Glaze
Before After

Mindy Harrell, owner of Harrell Art Group, was interviewed about her product Beautiful™ and it’s compatibility with Paint It!.™

Please tell me about Beautiful™ and why this product is unique from others out there?

The Beautiful™ line began to develop year and half ago after I started using the popular chalk based paints. I was literally in love with the concept of applying paint without having to sand, strip or prime. However, the first time I waxed cabinetry I knew I would never do it again because of the labor and expense involved. I wanted a faster antiquing process for large-scale projects and a durable topcoat/sealer. I began to experiment with various glazes and sealers already available on the market, but still struggled with rapid absorption. I wanted products that were performance driven for the professional and easy enough to use for the DIY’er. I teamed up with a reputable manufacturer in the coatings industry and together the Beautiful™ line was born. The introduction of Beautiful™ Glaze Clear and Antique along with our Furniture Seal Satin achieved my requirements. They are the core products of our line that launched in December 2012. Over the last several months we have strategically released complimentary products to the line that are amazing and Beautiful.™ Among these are Embellish Cremes, Shades™, Furniture Seal Matte, Fluid Polish and Table Top Sealer. Fluid Polish and Table Top Sealer are the newest releases. The Fluid Polish is a liquid wax designed for the person who loves a wax finish, wants an even application and a material that is easy to buff. It is a wax that is considerably easier to apply to kitchen cabinets and large-scale projects.

Table Top Sealer is a paste wax that is available in clear or natural wood. It goes on like butter and dries to a hard surface and buffs to a Beautiful™ shine. We recommend two coats for kitchen tables, buffing in between layers.

If you would like to learn more about our line please visit our website. I like to say, “Everyday begins with a choice, make yours Beautiful.™”

Beautiful™  Furniture Glaze ClearWhat experience do you hope artisans will gain by creating a dedicated Facebook page specific to Beautiful™?

I have a product specific Facebook page geared solely towards the Beautiful™ line. It is called Beautiful™ by Harrell Art Group. Here you can be kept up to date with our products, ask questions, and see projects where the Beautiful™ products have been used.

Recipes from the Furniture Junkie is a Facebook page managed by Kathy Carroll and myself. We wanted a page where people can freely share their furniture recipes, products used, etc. We welcome project recipes from any paint line as long as it is geared towards furniture re-finishing.

Why is it that Beautiful™ and Paint It!™ compliment each other so well?

Beautiful™  Furniture Glaze AntiqueOur Beautiful™ line was developed to work directly over absorbent-based paints with out having to seal the surface first. This is a perfect marriage between product lines like Paint It!™ I have completed several projects using Paint It!™ and have found that our glaze and sealer perform extremely well. I highly recommend using Paint It!™ It is a fantastic paint with many options available. You can buy a pre-tinted color in one of the “Seasons” available or buy the tint bases and create your own color. This is a particular advantage to people like myself who want more control over color options. Not to mention the price point is great, the paint is zero VOC and it can be ordered in quarts, gallons or 5’s. That is a bonus for sure!

If you haven’t already tried the wonderful combination of Paint It!™ and Beautiful™ be sure to try it out. You will be amazed by the ease of use and the incredible richness and versatility of the products. Chicago Institute of Fine Finishes welcomes phone calls, emails, or drop by the studio to see what they are all about. We know you will be thrilled with everything they have to offer.


Semi-Private Class

Need that wow factor?

Kathy Carroll is offering a one-day class each month where you will create 5 sample boards to thrill your clients and designers.

The classes will be offered June 17th, July 12th, and August 12th.

5 Sample Boards
Faux by Kathy Glass Bead Wall board silver Faux by Kathy Glass Bead Wall board bronze
Faux by Kathy Glass Bead Wall board Faux by Kathy Glass Bead Wall board silver mix
Faux by Kathy Glass Bead Wall board silver mix

We look forward to seeing you, where there will be every opportunity to network with fellow artisans, increase your profit margin with high quality sellable samples and learn new techniques or products.

$225 per student

50% DEPOSIT required in advance to reserve space. Balance due upon registration.
(Transportation, lunch and lodging not included)

Call to register 800 797-4305
Register Online

Welcome Office Manager at Chicago Institute of Fine Finishes

Faux by Kathy New Office Manager Sue Scott
Sue Scott - Office Manager

If you haven’t already had the pleasure to speak with her yourself, we would like to introduce you to our new Office Manager at Chicago Institute of Fine Finishes, Sue Scott. We are fortunate to have her here with her artistic knowledge, her willingness to help out, and her excellent support.

Sue has a background as an artisan and is thrilled to work in an atmosphere steeped with inspiration and creativity. “I was doing faux finishes and murals on my own. I was always interested in art, but fell into painting and murals for family and friends. Then, I found the faux finishing industry. I began taking classes and training.” With the training she’s had and her experience in the industry, Sue says, “I am in my element. I get to work with artisans from across the country and talk about what I love to do.” When asked what she enjoyed the most about her job she said, “The art. Creating, making samples and helping people.”

Every day in the studio is busy. “I primarily take care of the office, process orders, take calls, and take care of our customers. Anything the customer needs comes first, whether its product knowledge, technical support, or developing new samples.” Sue explains her day-to-day responsibilities.

When asked what she thinks about working for Chicago Institute of Fine Finishes, she says, “I love it. It’s a perfect fit.” We think so too. Next time you call; make sure to welcome her as we have. We know you’ll be as thrilled as we are to have her as part of the Faux by Kathy team.

Faux by Kathy Quick Inspirtations, Quick creative, and simple finishes to improve Decorative Arts portfolio
Click Here to purchase
Quick Inspirations

Quick Inspirations

January Sample Pack
Keep your portfolio up to date with high quality boards sent right to your door each month!  Each Quick Inspirations sample pack includes a 9 x 10 sample with a recipe for the finish as well as three 3 x 3 color waves.  What an amazing addition to your portfolio without the demands on your time!

Try our sample pack for only $27.50.  For the most cost effective savings order a 12 month supply at only $260 and receive a new Quick Inspirations sample pack delivered to your door each month.  Call now, we look forward to hearing from you!

Click Here to purchase Quick Inspirations >

Would You Like to Be Artisan of the Month?Faux By Kathy Decorative Artisan of the Month

Have you ever wanted to be featured as an Artisan of the Month on our website?  Now’s your chance!  All you have to do to be considered is contact our office.  If you are selected, you will need to be available for a 30 to 45 minute phone interview and provide us with at least 10 pictures of your work, and a picture of yourself to be featured with your article. 

The increased visibility alone is worth it!  What have you got to lose?  Contact us today!

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