Home Is Where the Art Is

Susan Troy turns fine art into home textiles with new business

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This fall, artist and designer Susan Troy decided to follow her passion and launch a business that brings living art into homes across the Ocean State. Her goal with Susan Troy Cloth is to take fine art out of the museum and embed it into home decor. Every pillow, baby blanket, and piece of cloth that she creates is hand-painted, thoughtfully designed, and one-of-a-kind. The final product is fine art that’s okay to snuggle with – what more can you ask for?

While Troy’s design work has been showcased by way of fashion in StyleWeek Northeast, over the past year, she has been preparing for the unveiling of her home textile business. After opening her online store in October, she now spends hours each day painting floral motifs and silk-screening images of plants onto beautifully dyed pieces of bamboo cotton and linen.

Troy’s creative process can be seen unfolding in her Pawtucket studio, which is engulfed in color: vases of flowers sit on window sills, paint smears run rampant on the tile floor, and her newest projects hang drying around the room. A new piece has just been finished: a long tan linen intended to reupholster an antique couch. She decorated the cloth with a series of mauve and green ranunculuses, a type of flower whose shape has found its way into a large part of her collection. Oval and multi-layered, the flower closely resembles a collapsed paper lantern.

When creating patterns, Troy utilizes what’s around her, finding inspira- tion in the everyday. For the round shapes, she grabs a Snapple bottle and cookie tin off a nearby table and uses them as guides, gently tossing purple around the outline they create. She explains that when she is painting, “It’s a very instinctual process. I’m not set on a shape coming out a certain way or putting an exact number of drops into a color. I’ve never been like that. That’s why I prefer hand painting over digital design, so that I never feel removed from the act of making art.”