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Dale Baldwin

Home Improvement : Decorated Tile Lends Individuality to Home

February 17, 1985|Dale Baldwin

Today's high-tech kitchens and bathrooms often need a softening touch and none is better than the personalized look obtained from hand-painted ceramic tiles.

That's the anything-but-unbiased view of Debbie Montrose, who has been painting tiles for about seven years, working with interior designers, architects, builders and anyone who can find her studio at 5622 Cahuenga Blvd., North Hollywood.

For $8 to $14 a tile, she'll paint your design on tiles you supply, glazing and firing them so that the tiles are safe to wash. Most customers want a multi-tile design like the two pictured above, but Montrose, who is also known as Debbie Munoz, will make just about anything that can be painted on a tile.

For an expensive speculative house in the Santa Monica Mountains, for instance, she designed a kitchen wall tile picture that features trompe l'oeil (French for trick of the eye or fool the eye) spice cabinets and flowers.

Since Montrose usually paints on tiles supplied by the client, you pay only for what you want. This is not always the case when the design is painted on tiles supplied by the artist, she explained.

The Owner Builder Center, 1516 5th St., Berkeley, Calif. 94710, will begin its Southland winter quarter on Tuesday, Feb. 25, according to Blair Abee, director. Classes will be held from 7 to 10 p.m. twice a week at community colleges including Los Angeles Mission College, San Fernando; L.A. Trade Tech, Los Angeles; Los Angeles City College, Los Angeles, Los Angeles Southwest College, Los Angeles; Los Angeles Pierce College, Woodland Hills; Los Angeles Harbor College, San Pedro and Glendale Community College, Glendale. More information can be obtained from the center at (818) 905-5075 or (213) 837-9601.

There are many times in do-it-yourself projects when you have to add numbers with fractions, particularly sixteenths. Try adding 11-13/16 and 13-11/16, to give an elementary problem.

The Jobber II, available from Calculated Industries Inc., 2010 N. Tustin Ave., Suite B, Orange 92665, for $74.95 plus applicable sales tax and $3 postage and handling, is just such a device. I tried one out and, after a brief period of acclimation, found it useful. It also functions as a regular calculator and a metric converter.

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