One of my favorite things about going to market to walk the halls, see what’s new, spot new trends, and occasionally come across a fresh, new resource. While at Las Vegas Market last week, I did exactly that, and spotted a newly launched lifestyle brand, Mitchell Black, that has a collection of stylish wall art that marries the past with the present by showcasing etchings from the 16th to 19th centuries in a variety of colors and using their own unique, modern framing technique. In fact, the line is so new that I believe I am the first blogger to be writing about it!
Mitchell Black is the brainchild of creative director Mitchell Pennel, whose innovative aesthetic and motto of “A New Tradition for the Home”, is the result of twenty five years in retail, interior design, and product development. The Mitchell Black product lines include stationery, table top, and wall art, but because I am an interior designer, much of this post will be focusing on wall art.
As a designer, my eye is naturally drawn to things that excite me, but I know that oftentimes a client may not have the budget for these exciting one of a kind pieces of art, as much too often they carry a price tag that is more than what they are willing to spend. I am finding that nowadays my clients have a sophisticated taste level, appreciate beauty, and also understand value. They now want art that looks good AND is accessible. This is where Mitchell Black comes in. Not only are their images beautiful, but they are also affordable, and people can see the value in what they are purchasing. (An 8″x8″frame retails for about $70 and a series of 6 – 8″x8″ frames for about $420.) The wall art is unique in that images from the past are presented in a modern way, which makes it just as home in a contemporary setting as in a traditional one. Available in a color palette of 17 colors and a vast library of images, it appeals to a wide audience.
Image on left via Mitchell Black, Detail image of frame on right.
Below, the series of boxers on the left are one of my favorites. I used a similar vintage etching for my son’s birth announcement, also done in letterpress, several years back, which is probably why I was drawn to this particular series. I have two boys, so when my second was born, the header on top of the birth announcement read “And so the battle begins…” (I wasn’t kidding!!!)
The vintage quality of each etching, and the different ink colors offered along with the innovative lucite frame makes a nice juxtaposition between vintage and modern. Whether one larger piece (the largest is 36″ x 44″) or a collection of smaller pieces (the smallest is 8″ x 8″) to form a gallery wall, it draws attention to a wall and gives instant impact.
The Mitchell Black booth at Las Vegas Market
As mentioned earlier, the Mitchell Black collection also includes tabletop and letterpress stationery. The tabletop collection has a Fornasetti-esque quality to it, while the letterpress stationery is class act with the fun vintage images in bright ink colors and matching envelopes. I’ve always been a huge fan of letterpress, and to incorporate brightly colored ink and envelopes makes it that much more fun and appealing!
The Mitchell Black wall art collection consists of hundreds of images, 15 different sizes, and 17 different colors, so the possibilities are endless – something for everyone. Since the line is so new, it is only available in a few places, but the list is sure to grow as they get more exposure. The line was shown in Atlanta and Las Vegas this past month and the first orders will be rolling out into the stores in the next month or so. A list of current retailers in your area should be updated on the Mitchell Black site periodically. Alternatively, should you need assistance in purchasing for a project you are working on, or even need help in planning out a room, feel free to drop me a line.
Unless noted, all images were taken by me, Jeanne Chung, at Las Vegas Market this past July/August 2013.