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Faux Real!

Two übertalented artists have the experts guessing.

Bozena Kapcia (standing) and Renata Czerkies of R&B Faux Studio are masters of disguising normal drywall with faux finishes such as luxurious leather, lavish gold leaf, embossed suede, textured linen and the like. 

R&B Faux Studio created this imitation embossed leather wall covering by first using a stencil and layering Venetian plaster for the raised effect. The last step was to paint over it with different shades of brown and burgundy.

This faux-ostrich finish is made out of polished Venetian plaster as well, with a custom stencil pattern created by R&B to mimic the texture of the bird’s skin.

By using layers of plaster, stencils and layer upon layer of paint applied in various levels of gloss—finished with a silver metallic top coat—R&B managed to make this snakeskin wall covering appear to be the real deal.

Juxtaposed with the surreal, trompe l’oeil aesthetic of their work, Bozena Kapcia and Renata Czerkies–owners of R&B Faux Studio (—are refreshingly down-to-earth. It has been nearly 10 years since their serendipitous introduction, and the duo assisted each other on individual paint projects before merging their one-woman shows in 2009. Thriving off their individual creativity while bringing different skill sets to the table (Renata is renowned for her murals and Bozena as a faux finish aficionado), R&B have been revered for their sophisticated and lavish imitations of gold leaf, crocodile skin and pearl-like patina. If you can dream it, they can paint it, and clients like Deb Reinhart, Anne Coyle and Scott Himmel sing their praises. “In my 30-year career, I have worked with many talented artisans—but R&B Faux Studio is beyond creative,” Reinhart says.

The duo’s courageous “can do” attitude has resulted in a plethora of projects, from Renaissance-style stained glass ceilings to marble, oak and brick simulated walls and furnishings. By adding a recent, custom wallpaper service that makes their faux finishes accessible to clients across the country, Czerkies reflects on their seemingly endless wealth of creativity. “I see fabric, shoes, jewelry boxes… And it all goes on the inspiration board. We want to put everything on the wall!” she exclaims.

Easily recognized for their infectious sense of humor—and their around-the-clock work ethic—these ladies are only going to get busier. Which is just fine with them. “The only time we get ‘glammed up’ is when we go to industry events,” Kapcia jokes. “We haven’t had to wear paint-splattered ball gowns just yet!”