About mcnaliss

My mind has been so busy for so many years, so I thought I would do some "house cleaning" and store some of my mind storming here in cyber space

Cornhole Boards Design


Just completed my first set of cornhole boards.

Trippy, Artsy, Wave Design

Trippy, Artsy, Wave Design Cornhole Boards

We painted them with Enamel which helped me get great coverage. I have only ever used latex paint for something large scale. The paints blended well, too. While it will take a longer time to dry, I think it will be well worth it. With some help from my friend Todd, a mural artist in Virginia Beach (T.A.L.E.N.T. Murals), I learned a lot!

My husband wanted something “trippy or something with waves” and I wanted to be sure the hole was a part of the design, not just in the design. I looked up some artsy beach scenes to get a feel for the style I was going for and then found a nice round wave to get my direct inspiration and guide for shape and form.

What do you think?


Henry Van De Velde – The Deutsche Werkbund – Modernist Architecture

During the earliest years of the Modernist Movement, designers and architects drew from leaders such as William Morris in the Arts and Crafts movement. In continuing Morris’s desire for equal opportunity art, Modernist designers aimed to bring art and design to the masses by attempting to make all things beautiful, not matter their function. They stood for thoughtful and tasteful design in everyday and industrial objects.

The Deutsche Werkbund was a leading German organization of artists, architects, designers, and industrialists that had a great impact on the movement in the early years of the 20th century. As mentioned in my previous post, Germany intended to make it’s mark on the world as industries were booming and new products were produced and shipped globally. They wanted their piece of the pie and intended to do so through clever designs. Unfortunately, the organization was divided into two main schools of thought. On the same side of the table as Peter Behrens was Henry Van de Velde. Their philosophy, which I share, was that artists should not be limited by strict design rules. Alternatively, frontrunners such as Hermann Muthesius, argued that design should be streamlined and standardized.

In Henry Van De Veldes early career, he was a painter and was greatly inspired by Van Gogh. His style was more expressionistic in this period of this life, which may be what caused him to believe in freedom of expression in design. He decided that painting was not the right medium for him to reach the world with his innovative spirit. His interests in architecture and design were budding and he felt that better opportunities existed for him to experiment with his ideas. He built his home and designed the “…interiors and furniture for the influential art gallery “L’Art Nouveau” of Samuel Bing in Paris in 1895. This gave the movement its first designation as Art Nouveau.”

He quickly became highly sought after and in 1905, he was asked by the Grand Duke of Weimar to launch an educational facility that would make him famous. I found a site with some great snippets and photos of his work which highlights this achievement:

“The School of Arts and Crafts in Weimar. Henry van de Velde not only designed this building; he was also head of the school until 1915. Here he was able to realize his ambitious plans for art education as total immersion in art and crafts. The Bauhaus grew out of the van de Velde School of Arts and Crafts.”


The School of Arts and Crafts in Weimar, Henry Van De Velde

In 1914, Van De Velde confronted Herman Muthesius at a meeting for the Deutsche Werkbund and this moment caused the movement to branch out in differing directions. Henry Van De Velde was Belgian, and after World War I began, he returned to Belgium and helped to found the distinguished architecture and visual arts school La Cambre. Van De Velde’s style evolved and matured from his early expressionism and even Art Nouveau roots for which he was known. He continued working and teaching and in 1926, he began teaching at Ghent University. Other than the library for which he was the architect, Van De Velde ceased to work as a designer and architect, but rather focus the whole of his career on his teachings. Henry Van De Velde was a loyal artist, designer, and motivator and his efforts are eternalized through the effects of his contributions.

-Links are included for citation purposes.

Peter Behrens Modernism

For my History of Interior Design Class, we have been asked to put together a blog article highlighting two architects/designers from the Modernism era. As can clearly be seen on my posts below, my past efforts to start a decent blog have been pretty dismal, but maybe this will re-spark my interest.

Our teacher referred us to another blog which I found a little difficult to read given that the writer did not speak English as a first language. Anyway, the article made mention of Peter Behrens, with whom I was not as familiar, so I decided to see what marks he made in the design world. Like most other architects/designers I have been tasked with studying, Mr. Behrens was an artist of many mediums. Born during the late 1860s in Hamburg, Germany, Behrens came into the world during the time that Germany was on the rise. He received his early training in painting in Karlsruhe and Düsseldorf, but expanded his resume to include graphic illustrations and book making. He was fortunate enough to build his own home in his 30’s where he experimented with curvelinear forms and organic inspirations in the Jugendstil, or Art Nouveau style, from his days of spending time in the bohemian circles. He began to develop a great interest in architecture and complete interior design after building his home in the Darmstadt Artists’ Colony.


I was curious to know more about the colony, so I googled it and found this description on Wikipedia:

“The Darmstadt Artists’ Colony refers both to a group of artists as well as to the buildings in Mathildenhöhe in Darmstadt in which these artists lived and worked. The artists were largely financed by patrons and worked together with other members of the group who ideally had concordant artistic tastes.”

In this cooperative arrangement, Behrens’ style evolved and he soon became one of the leading architects at the start of the 20th century. A few years later, he and a dozen or so other gentlemen started the German Werkbund. The organization was inspired by the arts and crafts movement, but adopted its characteristics with a new approach. Rather than dismissing the benefits of the Industrial Revolution, Behrens and the others embraced it. Germany’s influence on the world was becoming more prevalent and the creative bunch wanted to make a name for Germany in the design world. They aimed to produce thoughtfully designed products from large scale designs to household objects, like teapots. Behrens focused his creativity on projects for the German General Electric Company where he designed a number of their facilities, their products, their marketing materials, etc. During his time as AEG’s consultant, he became known as one of the first industrial designers. Behrens made his mark on design here and inspired a great many architects and designers when he planned the Turbine Factory (1910) to highlight the materials: exposed steel, concrete, and large areas of glass.


During the time that he was designing the AEG facilities, Behrens was a mentor and teacher to the likes of Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Le Corbusier, Adolf Meyer, Jean Kramer and Walter Gropius (later to become the first director of the Bauhaus). Through their study of Behrens more refined, shapely themes, these future architects and designers adopted a minimalist style characterized by free/open spaces, minimal framework of structural order, mathematical design ratios, and simplified ornament. Building materials themselves were considered beautiful and became a part of the designs. Behrens made his mark on modern design and architecture; that is a fact. His philosophies on design sparked new movements in art and architecture that can still be seen now, a century later.

“Peter Behrens.” Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia. Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. 22 July 2004. Web. 10 Aug. 2004.

“Peter Behrens.” Encyclopedia of World Biography. 2004. Encyclopedia.com. 24 May. 2012 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

DIY Magnetic Chalkboard on Kitchen Door

I have been wanting to mess with this for awhile now. A friend of mine had a can of magnetic chalkboard paint, which was lucky for me because did you know the pint costs something like $20 at Home Depot or Lowes?!!? My husband is a tile contractor, so finally I was able to make use of his unsanded grout leftovers. Anyway, here is how I did it:

1. Tape off the desired area on the back of your painted surface (in my case, it was my kitchen-garage door) using Frog Tape. *Tip: Use a level to make sure you have straight lines and 90 degree angles.

2. Following the instructions on the can, I did the first coat of magnetic paint only. I applied a thin layer with a roller.

3. Allow the first coat to dry for 30 minutes.

4. Then mixing a ratio of 3/4 cup paint and 2 tablespoons of unsanded grout, apply the second coat.

5. Allow to dry for 30 minutes.

6. Remove the frog tape carefully. I find that doing this while wet works best.

7. Use some leftover trim or shoe molding to create a the frame; cut the corners on a 45 degree angle. I am going to paint mine green to match the rest of the trim in the kitchen.

I mixed the unsanded grout directly into the magnetic paint because I liked the dark grey chalkboard color. If you want to use a different color, you can do the second coat of magnetic paint, and then a third coat with desired color + unsanded grout to create the chalkboard consistency needed.

Hello World!

This is what I look like a rainy Sunday

So, I guess this is it…the beginning of the blog. I have been advised to give it a shot, and I do love to blabber on. Maybe this is a good thing. I’d love to have followers – not in a cult leader find of way – just the kind that your words and thoughts can inspire or at least entertain. The problem is that my head is full of so many things. How can I pick one thing to blog about? I certainly cannot have 25 different blogs going on…so, I am going to see how it goes. I hope to find this to be an outlet of sorts. A place to “clean house” in my mind. I don’t want this to be a dark, unvisited storage shed kind of place to store my thoughts. Maybe more like an IKEA garage type of storage place. Somewhere organized and somewhat pleasant to spend time in.

Here goes: Welcome to my blog. Myndstorm is a place to read about my mind…a brain storm of thoughts, advice, ideas, and things I like to look at or think about. I like to think I have interesting things in my mind, and here is to hoping you can make some use of them! CHEERS and thanks for visiting:)