One of my regular posters, mrsben, brought up her love of wallpaper on the previous post.
Well, I share that love. I can get lost looking at wallpaper books. See, this is one of the many geek moments that run through my daily life. If you ever doubt the geekness, all you need is to picture me leafing through stacks on dusty wallpaper books at a little paper haven in North Hollywood, Ca.
A few years ago I the wallpaper "mecca moment" when I was given a tour of YORK wall coverings in York, Pennsylvania. The place and the people that work there are amazing. They do everything from original designs, print & produce all the papers they sell there along with having an incredible room that is filled with catalogued vintage papers that are museum quality papers. I was generously allowed access to everything they do and I can tell you it was one of my design geekiest moments. I still talk about it to all my friends and they roll their eyes and are scratch their heads as to how my extreme uncoolness has wound up on TV. I wonder too.
So, which paper is right?
There are SO many.
The decision making process is pretty much the same for the paper of the wall as it is for paint color, light fixture or a drawer pull:
1) What type of style and look are you going for?
2) Can you live with the bold print that you love in the book, on your whole wall(s)?
3) Do you want to add texture through a grass cloth or a bit of glamour by adding an updated damask?
Wallpaper is a classic look and being used more and more by decorators and designers all over the world in some incredibly well designed and high profile projects. The running theme for a long lasting classic look is to go with a choice that does the same exact thing you look for in a paint color. You use it to create a mood and tell a story.
Proceed with caution with some of the great looking "hot new trend" papers. Trends in decorating are no different than trends in fashion. They're trends and the law of the land means they will be out of fashion at some point. If you want to add a bit of excitement with pattern, you can look to pure classics like pinstripes, damasks & florals that feel updated and fresh by the use of new muted colors, or a slight original spin on the old design. Sometimes, just by a designer minimally tweaking a traditional pattern like a damask with a new flourish or more negative space in the layout can give this classic a crisp & updated perspective.
You can go simple and soothing with a single color and slight texture to add interest. This gives your room the same effect as paint would but with the added texture it goes a step further and can make a boxy, uninteresting room come alive.
Going with a bold print or color will surprise you. What may seem "busy" in a sample book can actually feel "just right" in your room up against the beige microfiber couch and the solid linen slip-covered chairs. This is a great way to add interest, but beware, prints can be tricky. If you're the type who gets bored with certain styles easily and are always changing out the throw pillows because they feel outdated to you, going with a print may not be your calling.
If you need another reason to look at the new papers, they are easier than ever to install and remove when you are ready for a change-AND-they've gone green! Walnut Wallpaper has a gorgeous and modern eco-friendly line of papers that are like works of art.
Choosing the wallpaper that is perfect for your room, like anything else, is about figuring out your lifestyle and how you really want to live. Knowing who you are when it comes to designing your home is always one of the biggest key elements.