Domingue Architectural Finishes is the result of a rare alchemy. A rich mix of deep experience, knowledge and creativity provides designers with the means to elevate and enrich their projects via timeless, beautiful materials.
Ruth Gay has always had a passion for natural materials that enhance life and grow only more beautiful with age. As proprietor of Houston-based Chateau Domingue, the leading source in the U.S. for monumental antiques and reclaimed materials, she has spent more than 15 years combing Europe for pieces with genuine character and rustic elegance.
In his three decades of practicing the art of architectural finishes Eddy Dankers has established a reputation as a master and an innovator. His most notable and frequent clients are the royal family of Belgium and the internationally-recognized interior designer Axel Vervoodt. Dankers’s work with plaster and paint lends depth and beauty to any space, producing interiors that are calm and luminous and exteriors that are humbly elegant.
Dankers’s and Gay’s shared love of timeless elements make them the perfect partners to introduce to the United States the fine all-natural plaster and paint materials that Dankers has long worked with. As old as time, the plaster, lime wash and mineral paint products work as a system to create surfaces that have natural dignity, pure and honest content, and an incomparable allure.
As proprietor of Houston-based Chateau Domingue, the leading source in the U.S. for monumental antiques and reclaimed materials, Ruth Gay has made dozens of buying pilgrimages to Europe, guided by an appreciation for materials that last and a taste for luxury that is warm, discreet and authentic.
Always ahead of the curve and responsive to her clients, she has recently expanded her offerings with new collections of wood and stone flooring and two new companies: Maison Domingue, a line of handsome bespoke doors made of reclaimed European oak and pine, and Atelier Domingue Architectural Metalcrafts, custom metal frame doors and windows that embody the slim profile, rigor and chic of European design.
With Domingue Architectural Finishes, Gay is both branching out and coming full circle. All-natural surfaces with substance and style are the perfect companions to both traditional settings and contemporary environments. Domingue Architectural Finishes is simply the latest expression of what has always driven Gay: a love in equal measure of quality and beauty.
We are discovering what Europeans have known for centuries…that mineral products are more beautiful and last longer than any other.
Eddy Dankers is exceptionally fluent with paint and plaster. For him they are not simply construction or decorative materials but a means of creating a harmonious, rich, and luminous atmosphere.
Descended from a long line of notable painters Dankers has been recognized for his exceptional talent with paint and plaster not only by royalty—as a purveyor for the Royal Family of Belgium—but by globally renowned master of interior design, Axel Vervoordt. For 30 years, in projects around the world, Dankers’ artistry has produced the surfaces that lend Vervoordt interiors their distinct depth and soul.
Dankers humbly refers to himself as “an artisan painter” but he is a rare master himself of any and all finishes, an alchemist and artist in one.
Lime paint is the mother of all paint…ancient yet so perfectly appropriate for our time.
Domingue Architectural Finishes plasters, lime wash and mineral paint deliver unadulterated finishes that have stood the test of time. These beautiful, rich and durable finishes have no synthetic ingredients or chemical additives. In addition to their naturally pure composition, they are earth-friendly in production and application, ensuring the health not only of personal living spaces but of our shared environment.
Slaked lime is the primary ingredient of our lime products. Limestone first goes through a process of calcination whereby pulverized lime is kiln-dried at a high temperature thereby removing moisture and calcium dioxide and resulting in quicklime, a caustic form of lime. To arrive at slaked lime, a form of lime safe to handle, quicklime is slowly rehydrated. The slaking process for our products is seven years, an exceptionally long time in the industry but a period that produces the strongest material that is the base for our lime plasters and lime wash. Slaked lime is a material that wants to, and actually does, return to a state of being limestone. It does so through contact with carbon dioxide and moisture. This process happens slowly but actively. Walls finished with lime materials act as natural air filters as they absorb the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. A limed surface is thus not only a surface superior in its bonding capacity and durability but also in maintaining cleaner air.
Our mineral paints are composed of three natural ingredients: liquid potassium silicate also known as “liquid glass”, mineral pigments and water. Together they constitute a paint that, aside from providing excellent coverage due to the density of pigment, penetrates and chemically bonds with the mineral substrate to which it is applied. Because the paint is an integral part of the surface, it will never peel, blister or fade. The breathable weatherproof surface it creates not only sheds water but allows walls to maintain an ideal moisture balance which combined with the high pH value of the minerals inhibits the growth of mold and mildew.
The time we are living in has seen an ever-growing awareness of the toxins in synthetic paint and the damaging effects they have on our environment, beginning with a single room and rippling out in ever wider circles to ultimately encompass our oceans and the very air we breathe. Of the 10,000 chemicals contained in standard household paint, 300 are known toxins. Among the most harmful are volatile organic compounds (VOC). The VOC content of paint is what causes chemicals to linger in our freshly-painted rooms not for days but years and what contributes on a much wider scale, to the destruction of the ozone layer. The character, purity and appearance of our products are unachievable in modern paint. Their integrity is unimpeachable.
Lime Wash & Mineral Paint
+ WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN LIME WASH AND MINERAL PAINT?
The high mineral content accounts for the superior light refraction and luminosity of both products. The binder in each product accounts for the difference between the finishes. The lime putty binder of Lime Wash renders a traditional matte finish that captures the elegant and subtle variations for which Lime Wash has been long prized. Lime Wash is a finish that very gradually softens over time as the lime in the wash surfaces in a barely perceptible bloom.
The binder for Mineral Paint is liquid potassium silicate or “liquid glass”, an impressively strong and immutable substance. Because of the strength of its binder, Mineral Paint will not fade, making it especially well-suited to exterior applications (over mineral substrates such as stone, concrete, brick or lime mortar) and applications where the preference is for a uniform rather than aged finish.
+ WHAT ARE THE ADVANTAGES OF USING LIME WASH AND MINERAL PAINT?
Lime Wash and Mineral Paint are simply the healthiest “paint” finishes you can buy. They are both composed of all-natural materials, including mineral pigments that are the colorants for the 55 colors in our palette. They both bond to a substrate through a natural process resulting in a durable, breathable coating. They are both hypoallergenic, non-flammable, and free of odor and VOCs (volatile organic compounds).
+ Are lime wash/mineral paint durable?
In general, Lime Wash and Mineral Paint are durable but they are not “wipeable” like some latex paint, so they should be handled with care. Mineral Paint, due to its “liquid glass” binder, is more durable than Lime Wash, particularly when applied over a natural substrate, such as stone, concrete, brick, or lime mortar. Through a natural chemical process, Mineral Paint permanently bonds to a mineral substrate, thus avoiding the delamination that can occur with synthetic paint.
Both Lime Wash & Mineral Paint finishes can be damaged by nicks and scrapes as well as by abrasives and other harsh cleansers. Whether a wall requires a touchup or a re-coating depends on the extent of the damage and the rendering of the finish. (Touchups disappear more easily in a more visually “active” finish.)
+ How do I care for a lime wash/mineral paint finish?
Just as with standard paint, applying a new coat of the same color is the best way to freshen dirty walls. With Lime Wash & Mineral Paint, the coat can be diluted, thereby increasing the yield from a single bucket (a 20% dilution is recommended). In areas subject to splatters (backsplashes, bathroom areas) or steady contact with water (showers, sinks, counters), we recommend applying a waterproof sealer.
+ Are your products warrantied?
Because our products are all-natural, they have tremendous stability. We are confident that they will perform as promised, provided that they are properly installed. Given the variation in installation environment and installer capabilities, we do not offer a product warranty.
+ Do you offer color matching?
Our range of 55 colors, created for us by color specialist Eve Ashcraft, is a palette unlike any other available in the U.S. All of our colors are derived from natural mineral pigments that lend our painted finishes a richness and luminosity unachievable in standard paint. If livable, natural, beautiful colors are what you are after, we are confident you will find what you are looking for in our palette.
“Color matching” is not an exact science, given the natural ingredients and the handmade process. We can attempt to “match” a color in either or Lime Wash or Mineral Paint, but there is no guarantee. There is a $50 fee to begin the color matching process. Please consult with our technical department for more information on this service.
+ How does your lime wash compare to others on the market?
Lime Wash is a finish well known to Europeans and relatively unfamiliar to Americans. While there are a few other small U.S. companies that offer lime wash, Domingue Architectural Finishes is unique in providing not only a palette of 55 colors created by noted colorist Eve Ashcraft but also a reservoir of deep experience with the materials and their application, thanks to our partner Eddy Dankers, a Belgian artisan painter who has worked all over the world, most notably on projects by the renowned designer Axel Vervoordt.
All true lime wash has slaked lime as a primary ingredient. Our Lime Wash uses lime from a quarry in the Dolomite Mountains of northern Italy that is put through a slaking process of seven years. This is an exceptionally long slaking period in the industry but one that produces the strongest material for our Lime Wash and Lime Plasters, resulting in surfaces superior in their bonding capacity and durability
+ How does your lime wash/mineral paint compare in price to conventional paint?
Lime Wash and Mineral Paint are as different from “regular” paint as apples from oranges. But we realize the need, in budgeting and estimating, for cost comparisons. Our Lime Wash and Mineral Paint are equivalent in price to Farrow & Ball and Fine Paints of Europe. Due to the density of pigment in our products, they achieve very good coverage. Note also that Lime Wash is a 100% dilutable product. Depending on desired finish, it can be applied anywhere from full-strength to highly-diluted to a glaze.
A five-liter container of Lime Wash which covers +/- 430 sq. ft. costs $130. A five-liter container of Mineral Paint which covers +/- 650 sq. ft. costs $120.
Orders & Special Requests
+ What is your lead time for in-stock items?
Our standard lead time for in-stock products, including Lime Wash and Mineral Paint in the 55 colors, is three business days (excluding shipping).
+ What is your lead time for special orders?
Our standard lead time for special order products, air-freighted from our supplier(s), is 10-20 business days, depending on the scope of the order. For items not in stock and for exceptionally large orders, shipped via sea freight, lead time is 8-12 weeks. Expedited shipping may be possible. Please contact us with any questions or concerns.
+ How can I sample the colors of Lime Wash and Mineral Paint?
Our small (4”x6”) hand-painted chips are available in all 55 colors, in Mineral Paint. If clients would like a bigger sample, we have found that large (8.5”x 11”) hand-painted sheets offer an accurate representation of both the color and finish of the Lime Wash and Mineral Paint. The sample sheets provide the flexibility of examining colors in different parts of the room and in different light. Each large sample is finished with two coats of Mineral Paint or Lime Wash.
In most cases, Lime Wash and Mineral Paint require a first coat of Bonding Primer prior to the application of the wash. If you would like your installer to test the actual materials, please let us know and we can arrange to send you the Mineralized Primer and Lime Wash and/or Mineral Paint. (Please note that non-mineral substrates such as wallboard MUST be coated with Bonding Primer before Lime Wash or Mineral Pint is applied in order to achieve an accurate color sample.)
+ WHAT IS THE LEAD TIME FOR PAINTED SAMPLE SHEETS?
Our small (4”x6”) chips are a stocked item. Order processing typically takes one–two days (excluding shipping).
Our large samples (8.5”x11”) are made to order. They are finished with two coats of Lime Wash or Mineral Paint. Due to the natural mineral nature of our products, they require proper drying time between coats. Rushing the process may compromise the sample. Our lead time for large samples is three business days (excluding shipping).
+ how do i order samples?
If your primary concern is a color determination, we recommend ordering our hand-painted color chips. These are 4”x6” chips that have been finished with two coats of Lime Wash or Mineral Paint.
If your primary interest is in testing the materials themselves, we can supply a Lime Wash or Mineral Paint Sample kit. Each kit contains a 0.5L Paint + required Bonding Primer.
Alternatively, we offer 1-liter containers of the Bonding Primer and color/s of the Lime Wash and Mineral Paint. Cost can vary slightly, depending on color selection.
You can download a detailed product and samples price list here.
To order please contact Domingue Finishes:
Phone: (713) 961 5270 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
History of Paint
Domingue Architectural Finishes are all-natural products that stray little from the original early formulations for plaster and paint. For testament to the beauty and durability of such products one need look no further than the Pont du Gard aqueduct built with lime mortar by the Romans in the 1st century A.D. or to Renaissance Palladian villas plastered with lime and embellished with frescoes or to 19th century buildings in Switzerland and Germany painted with mineral paint that is as vibrant today as when it was applied.
The staying power of these examples speaks for itself but the why of it is worth understanding. If the 20th century was about scientific discoveries trumping time-honored ways, with the synthetic replacing the natural, the 21st is about rediscovering the materials and methods of old. What we now call natural foods used to be known simply as food, before chemicals and technology intervened. For millennia, paint was similarly straightforward, a simple mixture of three things—a binder, pigments, and a solvent (often water)—all of them natural ingredients. As recently as the first half of the 20th century, no homeowner painted his own house; he or she hired a painter who was skilled at mixing the ingredients to arrive at the right color and viscosity. In other words, all paint was custom.
The 1950s saw the introduction of the first synthetic petrochemical paint which, during the postwar building boom, swept the old ways aside and took hold of the market so firmly that, especially in the United States, it has never lost its grip. The development of synthetic paints and pigments put painting in the hands of the do-it-yourselfer for the first time. Our optimism and faith in science carried these products forward unchallenged for decades. Modern paint ingredients are designed to make painting a fast, easy endeavor by creating essentially a uniform plastic coating that applies easily, covers well and dries quickly. What such a coating cannot do is breathe. Painting a house in modern commercial paint is akin to dipping a body in wax; in both cases, the coating seals off air, causing suffocation.
With Domingue Architectural Finishes we are circling back to the origins of paint and embracing the profoundly beneficial characteristics of the natural ingredients that are the sole ingredients of our products.