Working with Mercury Mosaics on designing our custom backsplash in our home was one of the most fun collaborations we’ve ever done. (You can read all about our experience from an influencer perspective here).
Her ideas and reasonings fascinated us and we loved how she never wanted to rush the process. Not only in the design phase but also the construction. Mercedes and her team wanted it to be a true reflection of who we are, what we were putting into the space, and what other brands were involved and why throughout this collaboration. Getting to know Mercedes more and more, she has brought a whole new light into my life. That’s for another day, another post.
One of the things I love and admire about her is that she doesn’t take the people she surrounds herself with and who she collaborates with lightly. She’s taken my thought level to an entirely different perspective. So I asked Mercedes if she’d ever be so kind to share with our readers and enlighten us on her view, from a brand perspective, about what it’s like to work and collaborate with not only us but everyone that she does and talk us through the process behind her why.
So without further ado, I wanted to introduce you to my friend, Mercedes Austin. Take it away, my friend!
I’m Mercedes Austin, founder of Mercury Mosaics. The entire basis of my business stems from custom, so collaborative work is a natural extension of this passion. Working on a custom design is a fun, educational, and inspiring process. With our 16 years of experience, not only myself, but the entire team, takes the successful processes that have contributed to our best custom work and I have summarized them here for you. Use this as a seed planted – for the quality of the aesthetics of your space are at stake. Don’t take this piece lightly, for it can transform the entire feel of the interior.
1. We start by understanding the space. Let’s take Construction2Style’s recent custom kitchen design as an example. Morgan & Jamie had already chosen some elements as the foundation of the room: cabinets, countertops, appliances, hardware, custom hood, flooring, and open shelving above the range. It was known that tile would go above the sink and for the range wall, this would be the focal point of the kitchen.
2. Tile Shape selected: Diamonds
3. Color and composition were the two items where we truly collaborated. These two items are not often thought about enough. As an artist and professional tile manufacturer, I’m always thinking about these things: I live and breathe them. For most everyone else, there’s likely not much thought put into tile colors and composition…..not in the way I’ll share about more.
4. Position of the tile relative to the other elements in the space. Your tile design makes the space. Best to gain a deeper understanding of what other surfaces and elements are in the space, which will impact the overall feel.
5. Make a mood board to set the tone of the overall design. A tool like this helps align the designer, client, decision-makers (like spouses, property owners, etc.), contractors – visuals speak far more words than endless meetings and email chains. Essentially in design collaboration, you’re sculpting a project. It starts as a block of stone, and as you go through the process, the intent is to continue, from an inspiring, educational, and intentional process, to narrow down the design – much like removing parts of the stone. This is done until all parties are in agreement that the design is precisely what the space needs.
- Once the above, perfect, awesomeness is in place, then it’s all about checking all the details: measurements and edge-finishing. This step, one typically “assumes things.” Things such as the cabinetry drawing will give you the tile measurements, or the backsplash is just the 18” between upper cabinets and countertops. Mostly this is true, but best to triple check. Don’t take my word for it, let’s ask Jamie Molitor, my point man for triple-checking measurements. I think at first he thought I was too obsessed, but once he installed the tile, like a breeze, I bet he had a few “a-ha moments” on why that step got a bit of extra love.
- You know it’s sooooo good when you lay out the mosaic in the factory, share it and your client squeals over text then posts it five minutes later on Instagram and 1,000s of likes happen!! That’s the special sauce.
Collaborations come from the heart; they honor both brands, they open doors, and they inspire all involved. It’s not about endorsing products, and it’s not about “product-placing.” It’s about telling a story. When told from an authentic place, other people begin to see themselves in the story, and this is a big piece of the magic. The story unfolds during an interaction between people and the execution of business from a place that is a two-way street; it shows audiences what’s possible. Together something is revealed to show the fruits of the labor.
“Our kitchen remodel was one of the best collaborations we’ve ever pulled off and it was because we brought in our favorite people and brands such as Mercury Mosaics. Not only were they a blast to work with and made us rethink what we believe in, stand behind, and who we collaborate with but how we run our business. This project has made us realize the value of increasing brand distinction for companies that we collaborate with. And we couldn’t be happier to report back to these brands about the data behind the viral Instagram and Pinterest shares and blog stats. And best of all it heightened reach from well-qualified leads wanting authentic, meaningful interiors. ” – Morgan Molitor
You can learn more about Mercury Mosaics and their custom designs here.