I’ve had some requests to talk about wallcovering.
And I have talked about wallcovering before which you can read about here, here, here and here and then also inter-woven in other blog posts.
If you are ever looking for anything on the blog. Just put the search term in the search box, right under my little bio in the sidebar and the posts will all pop up. I use that feature all the time; I’d be dead without it!
But Wallcovering Is A Massive Subject!
A wallpaper remnant via the
It’s been around for ages, but I’m sure only for the well-heeled back when this beauty was created, some 200 years ago, most likely.
And then there are the myriad of applications for wallcovering.
- The whole room.
Typically, wallcovering is on all four walls. As a rule the bolder the wallpaper, the smaller the space.
- One wall
Right. Most of us know that I am not fond of accent walls. I’m not fond of them when they make no sense or when they are a copout for not using a paint color all the way around. But one wall of wallcovering
in a dining room or an entry and other rooms, often makes a lot of sense.
- In a wall panel
This is a great way to use an expensive paper and get away with a lot less. And it’s also great if it’s a design that could use some rest areas.
- Above the Chair rail
- Below the Chair rail
- On the ceiling.
- With Art
Indeed. I love wallpaper that’s layered with art and/or mirrors, lighting, etc.
This takes a lot of planning.
And then all of the different types of wallcovering
Oh my, I don’t know where to begin.
I really don’t.
I mean, people have written entire books about wallpaper.
So, what I think I’m going to do is give a very general overview today and then in the comments, if you guys like, please let me know specifically about any areas you’d like me to cover.
One example would be natural wovens and grass cloth and its applications.
I am definitely going to do another post about Chinoiserie wallpaper, but this time, I have a whole slew of sources for panels and I’d love to have them all in one place.
A Few Of My Favorite Wallpapers and Wallcovering Sources
Mirabelle Suites and Cafe via Rethink Design Studio
I’ve seen this paper – EVERYWHERE. Mostly in bedrooms and even in a nursery, but I love this unexpected application in a restaurant with exposed brick.
Mirabelle Suites and Cafe via Rethink Design Studio
WE INTERRUPT OUR WALLCOVERING STORY FOR A BREAKING NEWS BULLETIN
FROM THE OFFICE OF LAUREL HOME SECURITY
Well, you know that I have vowed that if I see something, I need to say something…
Here’s what I saw.
I happen to know that this wallpaper is manufactured by Cole and Sons.
It is also available retail at Decorator’s Best.
If in the trade, you can go directly to your trade source. (In the USA it’s Lee Jofa who reps Cole and Son) and it will be a far better deal than the not-very-good discount Decorator’s Best gives to designers.
By the way, that is the primary purpose of Laurel’s Rolodex. I do not ever divulge net prices, but I do tell designers the best designer-friendly trade sources for home furnishings. And I also point out a few to look out for. Remember these folks?
For design enthusiasts who purchase the rolodex, I always recommend hiring a professional designer for a million reasons. But they will learn of 100s of sources they’ve never heard of before and most have retail divisions.
We will now return back to our regularly scheduled program
Wallcovering Favorites and Tips already in progress.
Another wallcovering from a very cool English brand, House of Hackney. But this one is also sold at Anthropologie. It’s quite traditional and yet has a fresh look to me. I love art hung over wallpaper.
I had this up not too long ago, but adore this fabulous Chinoiserie print wallpaper,
Brighton Pavillion by Miles Redd for Schumacher
I just had to include this one because isn’t that table almost an exact clone of Maura Endres’ console table?
House Beautiful – Designer – Charles O. Schwarz III – photo Mick Hales
The Ringwold Pattern at Farrow and Ball is one of my favorites and I’ve done it a number of times for clients in different colorways.
I seem to be in a tropical mood today. Maybe it’s the thunderstorm we had earlier. I could see being enveloped in this paper with lots of mirrors and art.
Baldwin Bamboo from Scalamandre
Fabulous vignette by Megan Rice Yager. Please check out the entire home.(link below image) It’s quite stunning!
Designer Lulu Powers’ home with another paper by
House of Hackneye –Palmereal
It’s interesting how she used the paper inside the panels to make them almost disappear.
People often ask me about the source of the wallcovering. Alas, it has been discontinued. :[
This paper has become an internet favorite the last few years.
It is by a Swedish company called Sandberg and the pattern is Raphael.
It is repped by Old World Weavers in the USA.
This is a very strong pattern that is based on a Swedish or French design. That’s cool. I love it, but for me, only in a small space and even then, broken up with art and mirrors or in a wall panel.
I love the blue trim and I think that overall, the room is fine, but it doesn’t look finished. It needs art and a better piece next to the window. I’m also not crazy about the shade and the pendant isn’t up to the level of the rest of the room. It just seems like the room wasn’t ready for the photographer and they faked it.
But this is an example where I might have just papered the fireplace wall. Maybe.
I love this for a small entry. I don’t know what the rest looks like. But when one has something this dramatic, I’d probably keep the adjoining rooms very quiet and pale as you see here. This is credited to the Remodelista – Lou Archell’s Home, but I couldn’t find it.
Thank you for this wallpaper post! I love all the wallpaper examples here. Question for you…I’m thinking about installing wallpaper in my dining room above my tall wainscoting (4 and 1/2 feet tall). There is a bay window in the DR. Would you wallpaper the ceiling of that bay area for continuity? Or would you leave it white like the rest of the ceiling? The bay area is about 27″ deep and 114″ wide. Look forward to your response!
No idea Katherine as I’m not standing in your room. But usually, the ceiling of the bay is the same as the main ceiling. Usually. But of course, there are exceptions.
I love all these examples. It just goes to show how one nicely designed wallpaper can make such a difference in a home- especially when it is paired with the decor around it (or the other way and design your wallpaper around your decor!). It doesn’t have to be used in every room…just a nice accent wall to draw focus in a room. Thank you very much for sharing!
Thank you Rita.
On the subject of toile wallpaper, I just papered an accent wall in my bedroom with Thibaut’s (Resort Collection) South Sea wallpaper in the color Tangerine. It’s wonderful!! I am making curtains today in the matching fabric, then will send a photo.
Also, this pattern comes in a number of very current colors, making it a “now” toile.
That sounds very beautiful Sheila. Thanks for sharing that!
My husband despises wallpaper. Growing up in the 70’s with the tripadelic stuff in avocado green and orange. aaack. So I got around this by using cutting edge stencils. They really have some hip designs. And when i tire of the pattern I can just paint over it. woo hoo!
That’s a win/win because hand-stenciled walls always look so wonderful and custom!
Good morning Laurel,
I’m sitting with a hot cup of tea on a cold New England morning catching up on some of your posts (surrounded by walls and trim in Cottonballs, love! Thank you!!)
I’m curious, did you decide to use the Anthropology mural style paper in your hallway?
Thanks for all your wonderfully informative updates,
Still mulling it over… I’ve been preparing for this talk intensely, the last few weeks. It has been a lot of work, because I also created a 54 page guide for the attendees!
In addition, before the paper would go up, I have to think about a few other things like possibly changing the baseboard mouldings which are pretty gunky. I should’ve done a little reno before I moved in, but at the time, wasn’t in a position to do it.
How wonderful for your audience! I hope you have a fabulous trip.
Thanks so much Julia!
I grew up in a house that was entirely wallpapered. My mom was total English country traditional, or something like that (emphasis on traditional). She now has all painted walls (every room was scraped and painted…no she didn’t move :)), and I have eschewed wallpaper b/c I associated it with a staid traditional look and like things more updated and modern. Traditional or classic bones, but neutral lighter painted rooms. Anyway, last year I fell in love with Hygge and West Oh Joy! wallpaper in a room on Pinterest. I waited for a sale and bought one roll for above my wainscoting in my kitchen. I absolutely love it. It makes me smile whenever I walk in the room! It’s obviously more modern, but so funny that I ended up back here! My mom was so excited to see wallpaper again! And I am so surprised at how much I love it now! There are a bunch on Anthropolgie I would love to have!
I think if things are kept over-all lighter, that even a wallpaper that seems very traditional will look fresh and modern.
I love that you found your way back home but with your own unique interpretation!
Oops, I forgot to add – your paint color guide and palettes have been invaluable! If only I’d purchased them sooner, it would have saved the Ben Moore guys a lot of funny looks and me a lot of sample pots.
Haha! Thanks so much Mary! I’m very proud of my products and love it when others are enjoying them too!
And yes, it’s been a while, but 21 years ago, I was “that lady” foaming at the mouth at the paint store with the paint store dude giving me “the look.” haha.
Thank you, Laurel! I’ve been staying up till the wee hours reading your blog, and your work has inspired me to fall in love with my new house – it’s taken a long time, because it’s a different style home for me and I’ve not known how to decorate it. Just putting a little love and a few new ideas into it has helped greatly! Do you think wallpaper would look strange just inside dormer windows? This is the last struggle for me – a long rectangle bedroom with 3 dormer windows and a sloped ceiling. Getting the paint right took forever, and I’m not sure how to handle dormer space. Different color paint? Wallpaper? Small art? It just looks like so much unbroken wall in there, even with my art up! Thanks again for brightening my days.
Sorry, I wish I could say for sure, but I’m not there to see the situation. It is possible to paper just the dormers, but a lot depends on configuration and the pattern in the paper. If you do so, It’s nice to paint the walls the background color of the paper. But again, not sure since I can’t see anything.
Laurel, as a design junkie, I read several design blogs, but yours is my favorite blog. My sister and I will see something and say, “Laurel would love this” or “Laurel would have a lot to say about this”. OR WWLD – what would Laurel do?I always say that your latest post is my favorite, but this one really hit home. I’ve used wallpaper with great success and received tons of compliments on my finished rooms. One thing has always confounded me. Why is it sold by the double roll but priced per roll? It’s confusing. Why can’t the double roll be one roll? See my dilemma?
First of all, thank you so much for your kind words! As for the wallpaper roll size. I was just talking about that in the comment before yours. Ack! It truly is CONfusing and I know that there are many who’ve been caught with nearly double the paper they needed as a result and you cannot return wallpaper. Ever!
From a marketing standpoint, it sounds better to say that something is 90/roll than 180 for a double roll. And then, there’s the issue as I said of “double roll size.” Not all double rolls are created equal. Or equally, it should be. American rolls are 27″ wide and 5.5 yds long and Euro rolls are 21″ and 11 yds long, approximately. It’s almost double, but not quite.
Ok, 2 wallpaper questions:
1. What if you are NOT a professional designer, but you are someone who fancies herself to be pretty damn good at decorating? I am in a smaller city, and the decorators here are just not up to par, so i’ve given up using them. Soooo…I’ve picked out a wallpaper to paper a powder room (https://www.cole-and-son.com/en/collection-contemporary-restyled/wallpaper-95/3016/), and the local fabric shop wants to charge about $300 per double roll, BUT I can get it at the horrible place you mentioned for $123 per roll. Are you saying that I should not?? I want your honest opinion…
2. You have chosen some beautiful papers for this post, but they are all on the floral side. What about modern or more graphic papers? Not classic enough? I am currently obsessed with this one: https://www.decorpad.com/photo.htm?photoId=124712. For my entry way or dining room. Thoughts? Or a graphic with a Kelly Wearstler Trellis vibe?
ok, and 3. What about grass cloth? I have always loved it, but then it became the “in” thing – which gives me pause. I love the depth and texture it provides. It’s my other thought for entry or dining. But I don’t want to be a trend-chaser. (I love-hate it when my life-long loves become a trend – suddenly easier to find, but then you see yourself everywhere). I know – #firstworldproblems
First of all, we need to be sure if we are comparing the same size “double roll” when comparing prices.
Cole and Son’s “double roll” is actually a Euro roll which usually covers about 55 sq feet. (not including repeats). And american roll covers about 37 sq. feet.
However, if one has found a paper in a store and taken the shop keeper’s time and/or advice, I would get the paper there.
It is absolutely fine to tell her that you found the paper for less but want to get it from her. Can she do a price match? No, she won’t be thrilled, but if she has half a brain in her head, she’ll take the deal instead of losing the sale altogether. If she says no, then you have my blessing to walk out of the shop and never go back.
But seriously, you need to consult with your paper installer for the correct amount giving him the roll size/repeat. Also, this is an expensive English paper. Please be sure that he has experience with this type of paper. You don’t want it falling off the wall.
Perhaps you missed the part that said that I would be discussing other kinds of wallpaper and applications. Maybe not right away, but fairly soon.
Thanks for the feedback – good call on checking the measurement differences. And I agree on using the shop if you have used their time/advice – that is another great point. Thanks for the wise and honest feedback!
I guess I did miss that other kinds of wallpaper posts would be coming – I’ll be patient and look forward to them!!
NP if you missed the info. I’m the worst reader ever which has had some not-so-great consequences!
I don’t know why, but your comments are not showing up. I enjoy seeing other peoples comments. I’m viewing your site from a computer so its not a phone issue.
OK, so now I can see the comments. They showed up after I left a comment. Just seems weird.
Yes, that’s odd, but glad that you can see them now. I have comment moderation turned on so if you comment right after I’ve published, there might not be any comments posted yet. I don’t think that’s what happened in this case, though.
Can’t say either. Everything’s working fine here and no one else has reported an issue. Is there another computer you could try?
There’s actually only about 3 actual manufacturing mills for wallpaper in the entire United States and they are the ones who make the wallpaper for literally every distributing company you can think of (Cole and Son, MDC, York, etc..) a lot of companies reuse prints from other “manufacturers” and market them with another pattern number and name. There is a lot of intersharing going on that people don’t realize.
Where are you getting this information? Some of it is not accurate.
Cole and Son is manufactured exclusively in the UK according to their website.
As for open stock patterns manufactured in the USA, it’s not anything anyone is trying to hide. But we are not talking about the lower-end papers. My feeling is if one is going to paper the walls, it should be a work of art.
Hi…what are your thoughts/experiences with choosing toile wallpaper?
As always, love your insight!
I’ve done toiles a few times. A few years ago, I had clients who wanted to recreate a Paris Hotel feel and we papered their entire bedroom with a toile. It was quite cool as the room wasn’t large and had some angles in the ceiling.
I had to visit the Anthropology web site just to drool. I found another mural. I think I short circuited my device drooling.
haha! Glad you enjoyed Barbara!
Then, there is Thibaut’s, which I have used many times. I love it in every colorway.
Yes, a very similar pattern! Love Thibaut!
oh thank you for this beautiful post Laurel
I’m so, so fond of wallpaper..and yes, there is wallpaper and Wallpaper.
I collect it on my Pinterest..since I’m a chicken to go for such a commitment..because mine would be a Wallpaper
Pinterest is a great money-saver:)
I can’t tell you how much I’m into this Artemis pattern..dream to use it somewhere..if not wallpaper than in upholstery(so expensive though!)..or ok to make it cheaper yet still enjoy it-at least a pillow.
But I have many, many favorite ones
interestingly I grew with wallpaper, at least for half of my younger years. My Grandma wallpapered the ceilings as well. And had borders done, etc. Very easy to get it wrong..yet she was very talented lady, in that regard. It’s a pity she was already in her late seventies, when she got to decorate her place, because beforehand it was a communal flat for us, as many others. So I’m happy she got to do it, better late than never..she had a blast, I’m sure.
If you see this, please give me your pinterest user name. I’d love to see your boards!
I love sweet stories like you shared about your granny. Yes, better late than never and I always say it’s never too late as long as you have a pulse. :]
With pleasure:) I’m aprilneverends there.
I just came across this One Kings Lane video that shows how to use fabric and liquid starch to make a removable wallpaper:
Oh wow Sheila, that is seriously cool! I love One King’s Lane. They have wonderful articles and beautiful products beautifully curated.
I think you are right about the room with the blue trim. It would look so much prettier if only one wall was papered. Interesting post.
Either that or lots and lots of breaks like an armoire or bookcase instead of the whatever that thing is by the window and art. It’s a busy look, but some like that. I like it but not so much in a bedroom.
Great post, Laurel. Wallpaper is a wonderful thing, and I love it that you posted a few sources. Can’t wait for your chinoiserie musings.
Thanks so much Cynthia!
In that last room, I just can’t stand it… what is with that itty-bitty chair in the corner?! My eye goes right to it and objects.
I enjoy your blog, you style and candor – thank you!
I’m telling you. The room was not finished. The stylist probably had these chairs on the truck from the last shoot. lol And that thing next to the window with the cheap task lamp next to it.
The room has so much potential. The shade has to go. But it’s black-out and outside mount when it could’ve been an inside mount. The people are probably neurotic about any small amount of light coming in the room. Fine. They should’ve done drapes and a much lighter shade. I might’ve done a woven wood shade and picked up the green in the paper for the drapes with a darker blue trim. Cream is risky for drapes unless with blackout since it can go yellow. But I think the drapes need to have some oomph since the trim is dark blue.
I would’ve added a shelf to the fireplave mantel and it’s crying out for a beautiful old oil painting or a large ornate mirror and sconces.
And a gorgeous French Flea market chandelier. Something like that.
Patti Memsic..sending absolute love & prayers, from the Uk.
Laurel, decorating isn’t just let-them-eat-cake, frivolity, is it ? it’s about creating Havens
from daily life, bringing people with a shared passion, together…and with your take on
everything, having a laugh, too !
You are obviously reaching the parts others fail to reach.
Puncturing a day with happiness is your special skill, & cherished, obviously, by those
experiencing challenges, elsewhere in their life.
Thank you for such a sweet comment! And yes, laughter is is God’s gift to us silly humanoids.
Laurel I truly, truly love your posts and blog and rolodex and personality, but dare I say it? I still cannot be a fan of wallpaper. I’m not sure if it comes from growing up in the late 70’s and 80’s (NB Yes I’m old, but am great if people lie to me about it as well.) or stripping so much of the watered silk, pepto bismol and robin’s egg colored wallpaper from my last home. I keep reading your post on the dark wood and am still fantasizing of throwing caution to the wind and painting all of mine white. I’ve eradicated much of it with white paint, but feel 80’s called and want the rest of my dark wood trim back. Any who, many thanks and keep writing! Thank you, Melanie
I admire people who can take a stand because that’s what they believe.
But there’s wallpaper and then there’s WALLPAPER. This stuff is more like art. But to be honest, I’ve never had wallpaper in either of my homes. I’ve thought about it for this one, but it hasn’t happened yet.
Hi Laurel-as always your timing is amazing. I just got back from the wallpaper store, ordering a couple of Schumacher samples. I love them already. But, what I really want to tell you, is how important you, and your personality, your knowledge, and your attitude about life, is to so many people. I haven’t told you this before, and have wanted to say this, for quite some time. You have helped me get through some very “hairy” stuff these last several months. Stuff that I never thought we, as a family would have to face….you know, like child (yes, a 35 year old child) with a rare and scary disease with a sudden onset. Yes, Laurel, you helped me through that. And I can’t thank you enough. We don’t
always share these things with each other, and we should. If I were there, I would hug you. In addition, we are in the midst of building our LAST custom home. We have built way too many. And, you have helped me with that too. And it has been more fun than a barrel of monkeys. So, have fun in California, my native state. And please keep blessing us all with more Laurel.
This is one for the special, special file. I’m really crying.
I hope your child is doing much better and is out of danger. I will pray for that.
Great post Laurel, and btw …. you look so much younger than you actually are! Have a great time in LA.
Thanks so much!
But… you haven’t seen me up close. (I don’t think.) ;] They just sent me a video of the panel I was on at KBIS. I watched about 15 seconds of myself and couldn’t bear it any more!
I was definitely not ready for my close-up Mr. DeMille! lol
Oooh. I do love wallpaper.
I mentioned it once here before but my grandma had really lovely cloth on her walls. I’ve never seen that anywhere else. It matched the drapes. Which sounds busy but wasn’t. It was a lovely and tranquil room.
Oh yes. It’s not widely known, I don’t think, but fabric can be paper-backed and then applied just like wallpaper.
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