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coffee + cre8tive {sept 7 ’06}

In my opinion, wallpaper is only as amazing as the person installing it. If good taste isn’t exercised, it can induce vomiting and scare the children. If you want to wallpaper but don’t know where to begin, refer to a trusty friend with great design sense, or hire someone with exceptional style for a quick and painless consultation.
Many decorators and designers are happy to spend a day helping you locate the best supplier, pattern, and installation crew for the job. Most importantly, they can also help you with placement and color. The thought of sugar coating an entire wall with something beautiful, like these beech leaves from House Couturier, totally thrills me. Most other Americans aren’t sold on the trend yet, many complain that we spent the entire 1990’s to get rid of it, and to see it return somewhat defeats the purpose. Given the popular selections of times past, I can see why they’re moaning. Some of it was insane.

The most common complaint from readers and clients pertains to the actual removal of it more than the installation process or costs involved. Others struggle to see past images of oversized cabbage roses or folksy prints with roosters or jumping dolphins on bathroom borders. Flashbacks of tacky 1970’s paper in their childhood home is incentive enough to step away from the wallpaper trend.

We had wallpaper in our home but my mother was smart enough to hire an interior designer when she got stuck on paper selection. The designer, an Italian with exquisite taste, transformed several rooms in our home into a papered paradise. The rooms could have graced the pages of any design magazine back in the day, at least a 1970’s magazine with all it’s gold, orange, green, yellow, blue and white splendor. My great-grandparents on the other hand, that’s another story. They had wallpaper that would induce nightmares. Flowers so bold and out of scale that you envisioned they’d jump out and eat you in the night. Their gigantic floral wallpaper combined with floral linoleum floors (that ultra thick kind), huge oriental carpets and mahogany antiques embellished with lion’s heads and paw feet supporting hand-carved credenzas, was way over the top for a Rhode Island farmhouse. Gladly, I didn’t inherit any of their design genes and I have not once ever slept over at their home. I preferred my grandmothers flower-free abode across the street. She had subtle wallpaper, the kind that won’t eat you in your sleep.

Next enter the renters, those who would consider wallpaper but are prohibited by the landlord to install it. That is where I see myself.

Renters and haters and traumatized children aside, there exist others that can and do wallpaper their homes, taking delight in using decorative papers to breathe fresh life into their space.

Where do you stand? To paper or not to paper, that is the question.

note: fabulous wallpaper link via print + pattern

(images from house couturier)

Posted by decor8 in walls on September 07, 2006

Your comments...

  1. Mama Chilanga commented
    September 7th, 2006 at 5:07pm

    Stop tempting me with such beautiful papers or I will end up risking my landlord’s rage and wallpapering my rental! You don’t want to see me and my daughter thrown out into the street, do you?

    These are seriously beautiful.

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  2. .:soplador:. commented
    September 7th, 2006 at 5:19pm

    que lindas paredes

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  3. Maryam in Marrakesh commented
    September 7th, 2006 at 5:39pm

    Wow! These, are seriously amazing! I have never EVER considered wallpaper before. But you are starting to make me see the error of my ways. And with a whole house and guest house to decorate, maybe I can start with one wall. INCREDIBLE.

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  4. h commented
    September 7th, 2006 at 5:41pm

    trends come and go. what looks great now is going to look ugly to our grandkids…and then become popular again (flared pants, platform shoes).

    those branches are so wonderful. if i had the funds, even though i’m a renter, i’d still buy the wallpaper and then just hang it like panels instead. too bad i’m almost 30 and still have a college kid’s budget. sniff sniff.

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  5. NutmegNine commented
    September 8th, 2006 at 8:49pm

    Those are amazing papers. Will you convince my landlord to replace the country-cutesy paper he sticks in all the master baths in our complex with any of these? Pretty please? It is much easier to commit sins of cheesiness with wallpaper than with paint. You should have to pass a test before being allowed to buy it.

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  6. Carmen_N commented
    September 8th, 2006 at 11:04pm

    If you are renting and can’t paper the walls with traditional paper you might want to consider this alternative: http://www.whatisblik.com/ – I am researching using them for a client project. She doesn’t want to commit to papering her livingroom and after some research I found the above company (Via StyleHive). When you visit their site click on the photoshoot image on the lower right hand side of the page. They have a slide show of all their new patterns. I fell in love with the “vines”.

    Anyhow, hope that helps. I love your site and I look forward to coming back here often. It’s beautiful and inspiring.

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  7. decor8 commented
    September 8th, 2006 at 11:19pm

    carmen i love blik – have you ever read their blog? it’s fun.
    http://whatisblik.blogspot.com/

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  8. decor8 commented
    September 8th, 2006 at 11:20pm

    nutmeg and mama – i know what you mean about landlords, sheesh, some just don’t get it do they?

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