courses – design – project management

 living interiors with el corral..

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decorative paint & mosaic courses
decorative paint & mosaic courses


are held in Andalucia over long weekend programmes in Autumn & Spring.

offering inspiration and practical knowledge for those embarking on decorating or furniture painting projects.

• paint effect techniques for walls & furniture

• the art of pebble mosaic for floors

• mountain cottage & village accommodation

• organic food & local wines

• time out for swimming, walking, relaxing

see courses for full details of programmes,
accommodation & how to book

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design
design


service offering ideas, advice, support and cost estimates for colour, wall, floor & house schemes, independent from or in tandem with a project management service.

• colour boards of paint & fabrics

• sample boards for wall finishes

• tile boards & pattern drawings for floors

• scaled drawings for room and house schemes

PHILOSOPHY
el corral design's philosophy is based on working with clients to enable them to achieve their own vision for their home. A starting point is usually a favourite colour, piece of furniture or painting, around which a scheme is worked.

natural light plays a role in determining the strength, weakness and position in a room of the colour tones for the scheme.

CHARGES
design services are charged by the hour, with an estimate of time provided at the outset.

el corral design has an open accounting policy, enabling a trust relationship essential to the success of a project. Budget control and regular account updates are provided.

see design & projects for further details

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project management
project management


service offering organisation and administration of house renovations, wall & flooring projects, independent from or in tandem with our design service

• cost estimates and budget control

• sourcing & purchasing of materials and labour

• daily on site management

CHARGES
project management services are charged by the hour, with an estimate of time provided at the outset.

el corral design philosophy is for open accounting of costs, enabling a trust relationship essential to the success of a project.

see design & projects for further details

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who, what, how & where
who, what, how & where


el corral design is an education, design & project management service, offering a unique blend of inspiration, knowledge and practical help to enable individuals to achieve their own design goals.

COURSES
offer inspiration and practical knowledge giving students confidence in creating their own schemes.

A DESIGN SERVICE
offers ideas, advice and support on colour, room, wall, floor & entire house schemes. Using storyboards and scaled drawings, ideas are translated to paper to work desired elements into a scheme.

A PROJECT MANAGEMENT SERVICE
offers organisation and administration of the design & construction process with daily
on site management and budget control.

CHARGES
design & project management services are charged by the hour, with an estimate of time provided at the outset.
course programmes are an all inclusive charge per person.

the traditional Moorish village of Mairena is the hub of el corral design, and is located in the alpujarran mountain range in Andalucia, Spain. It is nestled into the side of the mountain with panoramic views of the valleys and coastline below.

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make contact
make contact


for more information on

• courses, programmes, dates, accommodation, prices

• design of houses, colour schemes, paint

• project management of partial or complete house schemes

• tiling or wall projects

please email us at

elcorraldesign@gmail.com

or click on the bubble symbol on the top left corner of the photo.

to share any aspect from this site, or to keep a selection of favourite images, click on respective symbol on a photo

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nicky foster
nicky foster


moved to the small Andalucian village of Mairena in 2004 to experience a different quality of life from running her business, Paintworks in London's Portobello. She founded Paintworks in 1994, designing, wholesaling and retailing her own brand of paints for walls and furniture, which are still being sold today by the Malabar Cotton Company.

nicky recently designed a new paint collection for Malabar, which was launched in Spring 2013.

paintworks also offered a colour design and decorating service, and ran weekly courses in special paint techniques, which nicky continues to offer at el corral design.

paint & mosaic courses are run from casa el corral, her village home, where students can draw on ideas and inspiration.

piedras Enciso, her mountain cottage hideaway is provided as a place to relax during the course programme, as well as accommodation for course students.

nicky has spent several years renovating her house, as well as undertaking design and building management projects for clients locally and in the UK. Projects range from small to complete house schemes.

featured recently in period living magazine, casa el corral has been carefully restored using reclaimed and natural materials.

the photo gallery is a brief storyboard of Nicky's history, from running Paintworks; decorating client's homes; taking time out at Piedras Enciso; moving to Mairena to restore her village house, setting up el corral design to designing a new paint range for Malabar.



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el corral studio
el corral studio


courses are held in the studio at casa el corral located in the pretty Moorish village of Mairena, Andalucia in Spain.

students will learn how to mix and work with glazes to create soft wall & furniture washes; with Italian plaster to create relief finishes using stencils; with paint, paste & waxes to antique & distress furniture, transforming new wood to old, and with pebbles and shells to create pebble mosaic designs.

students will gain a good understanding and practical knowledge of a range of special techniques.

see courses programmes for the weekend schedule.

for details on how to book onto the long weekend course programme go to courses - how to book.

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programmes
programmes


include key elements from the popular Step by Step, Decorative Walls & Furniture Painting formerly held at the London Paintworks studio, as well as pebble mosaic design and application, inspired by the intricate mosaic patterns at the Alhambra Palace in Granada.

long weekend programmes are held in the Autumn & Spring.

courses are both practical and fun, with free time between sessions for students to relax, take a walk or swim at Piedras Enciso, a mountain cottage hideaway with a pool and four poster day bed, featured in the photo gallery.

DAY 1 - FRIDAY
12 noon Welcome and lunch
2 - 6 pm Introduction
7 pm Dinner at Piedras Enciso

DAY 2 - SATURDAY
10 - 2 pm Morning session
2 - 3 pm Lunch
3 - 6 pm Afternoon session
7 pm Dinner at Vina y Rosales

DAY 3 - SUNDAY
10 - 2 pm Morning session
2 - 3 pm Lunch
3 - 5 pm Afternoon session

all inclusive course price per person €595

for details on booking and accommodation please go to courses.

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how to book
how to book


email us at elcorraldesign@gmail.com

PRICE
€595 per person includes the course programme, materials, accommodation, breakfast, lunch, dinner, and local transfers.

price excludes flights & airport transfers.

FLIGHTS
are available to Almeria from London with Easyjet or Ryanair, and from Birmingham with Monarch. Car hire is available at the airport. Alternatively, airport collections can be arranged.

ACCOMMODATION
is offered at Piedras Enciso (mountain cottage) & at Viña y Rosales or Las Chimeneas (Mairena village). Please specify preference when booking.

for course programme dates, accommodation and to make a booking, please email us at:

elcorraldesign@gmail.com









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where to stay - cottage
where to stay - cottage


piedras enciso is a secluded mountain stone cottage in the Sierra Nevada Natural Park in Andalucia, Spain, offering a tranquil haven from the stresses of daily life. From the terrace or natural spring fed pool, guests can enjoy superb panoramic views of the mountains and valleys. Once a derelict ruin inhabited by goats, piedras enciso has been carefully restored with natural slate floors and chestnut beams.

situated among traditional Moorish terraces in the Alpujarras, it is a short drive to the mountain peak for winter skiing and an hour to the coast. It is an ideal setting for those wishing to get away from it all.

the cottage has two bedrooms (one double & one double or twin) sleeping 4/5 persons. It is available for exclusive rental during holiday seasons & for students attending the el corral long weekend course programme. Rooms are available as single occupancy for a maximum of two students, or shared occupancy for a maximum of three students.

for full details on holiday rental of piedras enciso visit www.ownersdirect.co.uk/spainb/ S13853.htm

for details on how to book, please go to courses - how to book.


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where to stay - village
where to stay - village


viña y rosales in Mairena village is a late 19th century mansion house with a wonderful organic garden designed by landscape gardener, Marjet Maks.

dinner will be held on the garden terrace for students on Saturday, day 2 of the weekend programme.

bed & breakfast accommodation is offered for students within the course price

for more information and to make a booking, please go to courses, how to book

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colour schemes
colour schemes


service offering ideas, advice, support and cost estimates for colour schemes.

• colour boards of paint & fabrics

• sample boards for wall finishes

• tile boards & pattern drawings for floors

PHILOSOPHY
el corral design's philosophy is based on working with clients to enable them to achieve their own vision for their home. A starting point is usually a favourite colour, piece of furniture or painting, around which a scheme is worked.

natural light plays a role in determining the strength, weakness and position in a room of the colour tones for the scheme.

CHARGES
design services are charged by the hour, with an estimate of time provided at the outset.

el corral design has an open accounting policy, enabling a trust relationship essential to the success of a project.

CREATE A SCHEME
create a collection of favourite images from this site by clicking on the heart symbol in the top left corner of the photo

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decorative walls
decorative walls


in subtle or colourful layered finishes add essential warmth to the home. From cool contemporary shades to colourful vibrant hues.

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inspiration
inspiration


andalucian skies

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paint
paint


designing the new malabar paintworks collection took several months to complete.

the original range, while bright and colourful, was in need of more subtle shades.

although strong and vivid colour is still present in the new palette, it has been softened as well as balanced with neutral, calmer tones.

the challenge was both how to create a balanced range across the colour spectrum, and ensure that each colour stood alone.

a favourite pigment, raw umber was a dominant influence, taking out the intensity but preserving the integrity of each colour.

another influence was the soft whitening effect of lime to be found in pigmented lime washes in Andalucia, weathered by sun and rain over time.

the outcome is a paint collection which has the look and feel of antiqued limewash in 90 subtle shades.

an option to lighten some of the stronger tones by up to two shades is offered by Malabar. 20 shades can be created in 3 strengths: full strength, as shown in the chart or up to two shades lighter.

the new collection can be purchased at

www.malabar.co.uk

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project - casa el corral
project - casa el corral


nicky's home in Mairena has been carefully restored using reclaimed and natural materials.

living in Andalucia has given Nicky the much needed space to think and create new ideas.

years of collecting magazine cuttings on room schemes, and taking inspiration from these and Taschen's book on Moroccan Interiors have helped her to create a mix of contemporary chic with traditional Moorish design.

featured recently in Period Living magazine, casa el corral was Nicky's first major house project in Spain. With a limited budget, most of the floors, walls and gesso plastered units were designed and built by Nicky with the help of local experts.

athough a lot has been achieved, the house still has many stables to convert. Traditionally these were ground floor dwellings for mules and chickens.

one of the stables has been converted to a cool summer bedroom with courtyard garden, featuring colours which are the hallmark of el corral design - creams, browns & bright pinks (walls are in Malabar Chicory & Hemp), with natural slate floors, pebble mosaic, beams and lush green plants.

another stable adjacent to the courtyard garden has been converted into the el corral studio, where paint courses are held.





mark scott, a UK based photographer took most of the pictures of Casa el Corral featured in the gallery. a big thank you goes to him, for a valuable record of the house.

see more of Mark's work at www.markscottphotography.co.uk

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project -  casa san anton
project - casa san anton


a three storey house in Mairena village was virtually rebuilt, with only the external walls, the original internal walls, good beams and interior features preserved.

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projects - floors
projects - floors


designs have been inspired by the intricate mosaic and traditional patterned floors to be found at the Alhambra Palace and the Albaicin, the old Arabic quarter in Granada.

• reclaimed terracotta & plain or patterned hydraulic (encaustic) tiles are worked in together

• new terracotta is antiqued with tinted varnish & grout

• white cement is mixed with new pine antiqued to create old oak

• pebbles from the beach are used to create mosaic patterns in natural slate floors


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magazines 2013
magazines 2013


featuring the new malabar paint range, designed by Nicky during 2012.

go to design & projects, paint to view the new range.

paint can be purchased direct at www.malabar.co.uk

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period living magazine
period living magazine


featuring casa el corral in July 2013 issue

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malabar photo shoot
malabar photo shoot


with fabrics from faraway places being the essence of Malabar, it was fitting that the photo shoot for the new fabric and paint collections took place in Andalucia.

a colourful array of plains in Hamma linen, Gisha silks & Buckra cotton were displayed amongst the lovely Andamooka, a cotton with taped linen fringe, Cocomaloo and Chimichanga.

two locals volunteered to be dressed in Chimichanga, Jose & Elissa the mule, Antonio & Juan, the dancing Andaluz.

mairena proudly offered it's narrow streets to show off the glorious Antilia silks, as did piedras enciso with the pool bed displaying Taka stripes, and viña y rosales garden allowing Kikili to hang from it's branches.

thanks go to Gail Abbott - journalist, writer and stylist for her great eye, and Mark Scott the photographer who abandoned his studio lighting in favour of natural Andalucian light.



to see the full range of fabric and paint collections, visit

www.malabar.co.uk


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where to find
where to find


people, places & things listed on el corral website:

PEOPLE
elcorraldesign@gmail.com
www.malabar.co.uk for paint
www.markscottphotography.co.uk
www.gailabbot.co.uk
www.periodliving.co.uk


PLACES
www.ownersdirect.co.uk for piedras enciso
www.raya.org for viña y rosales



..through courses, design & project management

© el corral design