By Bianca Rico
I’m Bianka Rico. I’m a creative, free spirit, animal lover, treasure hunter, extraordinaire, and nature lover. I’m a mom to a wonderful young man that daily reminds me of what is important in life.
Paint is therapy for me, and over the last few years, I had a longing to get back to doing things I love. I have a sentimentality for so many things that I find on my jaunts, whether it is an old copper container with wood handles used to store wood, a beautiful piece of glass, or a wonderful piece of furniture that has been discarded and needs someone, that being me, to breathe new life to it.
There are so many wonderfully made pieces of days old that can be repurposed into something beautiful. You can’t compare the modern technology of today’s newly made furniture with how things were done in the days of old. They just do not make things the way they used to.
Furniture today is mostly pressed board with veneers, made shabbily and not for the long haul. I love pieces that can be passed down from generation to generation. The creative process soothes my soul, allows me to take a breath, focus on the task at hand, and shuts out the noise from a normally chaotic life.
During the past three years, I spent time and energy redoing a beautiful old building, the former Asteroga House on Burwell Street in Little Falls, into an Airbnb boutique hotel. I loved the creative process that unfolded during a time that affected our lives and put us all to the test. That was the birth of Redefined Alchemy LLC….REDEFINED: to define again or differently ALCHEMY: a seemingly magical process of transformation, creation, or combination.
Not only was the building undergoing a transformation so was I after losing a career I’d had for just about 40 years.
Redefined Alchemy LLC and Redefined Alchemy Home was born from a desire to create more than just wonderful spaces for people to stay. I want to create furniture and more. To take discarded or rejected items and use quality materials, imagination, and simple techniques to re-imagine them as items that can be treasured in a unique home setting. Like yours.
Because I find such joy in creating, I want to share this with anyone who wants to learn. I believe everyone is creative at their core, and I want to encourage you to look with new eyes at what’s around you and imagine ways to change and beautify your surroundings because it’s fun. Because it’s empowering. Because it’s good for the soul and the planet to RE-USE and RE-imagine and, of course, to Redefine. To know the value of good stuff and breathe life into what’s old and dusty. To create from simple materials. To create from your very own hands.
I use Wise Owl Chalk paint on my treasures and feature it in Redefined Alchemy Home. The reason I chose Wise Owl Paint is to Redefine my found treasures…. Wise Owl Paint is made in the USA and is a woman-owned and run company. Its focus is on creating something beneficial to the environment and making the earth a better place.
Wise Owl Paint is made from scratch. Many furniture paints are made using box-store latex paint with minerals added. This poses health risks regarding inhaling crystalline silicates but also affects performance. Paint made from scratch has the minerals and chalk added in the beginning and is “part of the grind,” so they are fully incorporated into the paint. This greatly increases the paint’s lifespan and ensures the minerals won’t settle at the bottom of the can, affecting adhesion. You will also experience a much smoother self-leveling finish because of this.
Wise Owl Paint stays very connected to both customers and retailers alike. Karen Chouinard, the owner, is an Environmental Scientist, and it’s important to her that she truly “walk the talk” when innovating the safest products that will not negatively impact our environment.
Wise Owl Paint remains grassroots and plans to stay that way to help ensure hands-on quality control & safety.
Quality is of the utmost importance to the creators of Wise Owl paint and products. They choose quality over profit, which is why I chose to carry their line and use it on the furniture pieces that I Redefine.
Wise Owl Chalk Synthesis is zero VOC, and Wise Owl One Hour Enamel paint is very low VOC. Volatile organic compounds are off-gassed into our environment and your home; compromising your health or the environment is not something we would ever consider.
Wise Owl Paint is committed to protecting the environment & reducing its carbon footprint and takes serious & deliberate action to reduce waste through manufacturing & shipping, but also sponsors projects to benefit wildlife & the environment. Integrity is a huge part of their mission, guiding every part of their business from start to finish.
I have a website that presents my curated market wherein I offer for sale ALL of the amazing decor transfers, stencils, stamps, & molds created by Redesign by Prima, also a woman-owned business, and of course the full line of Wise Owl along with a selection of quality paint brushes and the most fabulous furniture salve that can be used on almost anything, including your skin. I will expand offerings as we grow together but rest assured, only the very best tools & materials will make the grade.
I also carry Mint by Michelle decoupage papers, which is in Australia, yet another woman-owned business that has an extensive line of DIY products to Redefine whatever treasure you might have in mind to do yourself.
I hope to bring something special to you and to engage others to get involved with creating for themselves. Classes are in the range of goals I want to get involved with. Decoupage, as well as layering paints, creating textures on furniture or even smalls like boring plant pots or old vases that need a new life, making them look like ancient stone, finishing kitchen cabinets, or applying some beautiful transfers on top of a specially finished piece, are some of the ideas I would like to teach.
I will also be available for custom work if someone doesn’t want to do the work themselves, but if they have a piece of furniture that they are tired of and want to transform into something they will love, I will do that.
With a bit of imagination, we can make the world more beautiful with our hands.
The store is located at 616 E Main St in Little Falls and will be open Thursday through Saturday from 11 am until 3 pm and by appointment. You can find out more by visiting www.redefinedalchemyhome.com or emailing email@example.com.
A soft opening is planned for Friday, May 12, 2023, and the grand opening will be the next day, Saturday, May 13, 2023.