Archive for June, 2010

Long Distance Wallpaper

June 29, 2010

The Internet sure has opened a world of opportunities, in many fields.

I got a call from an interior designer in Hollywood, who is working with a client here in Houston.

She has seen the home one time in person. But, with the reality of the Internet, she is able to find wallcoverings (and the home’s other furnishings) on-line.

She has been able to send me stats on the products, info on the rooms, measurements, and photos, all via the computer!

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Wallpaper & Autism

June 25, 2010

The primer I like to use to prepare walls for wallpaper is KILZ. It’s a superb product, but has strong – and I mean STRONG – fumes. I use a chemical respirator mask to prevent inhaling the fumes while working with it.

The product dries fast, though. But the smell can often be detected in the home for a while.

I try to warn my clients ahead of these points.

This week, my client asked if I could use a substitute primer that did not have a strong odor. The reason was that she was concerned for her two children. One has allergies and one has autism, and she worried that the odor would cause a negative reaction.

Defects in Wallpaper!

June 17, 2010

I prepped a bathroom yesterday, and this morning got set up to install some beautiful chocolate brown paper with a mottled silver lattice-and-fleur-de-lis pattern.

While rolling it out on my table, I noticed a small-but-noticeable flaw. There a very slight abraision all along most of the left edge of most of the double rolls, leaving a white edge showing. This happens from time to time, and it’s not usually such a big deal. But on a dark paper like that rich brown, the exposed white on the left edge of each strip butted up against the dark brown on the right edge of the next strip would be very visible, in my opinion, catching your eye every 27″ (the width of the paper) down the entire length of each strip.

This is a high-end Thibaut paper, and generally a dependable brand of good quality. But
I have been encountering problems with this brand more and more recently, and that’s a shame. It stresses the client, delays the job, and messes up the installation schedule for other clients.

People pay a lot for the paper, and for labor, and they’re going to live with the finished room for many years, so they should have as perfect a job as possible. When I detect defects, I usually won’t put it up.

I recommended that the designer return the paper, and have Thibaut replace it with a different run. Workers at the company should HAND CHECK the new paper before sending it out. They should roll out several yards from several different rolls and butt them against each other, to be sure the new run is free of the same defect.

Jazzing it Up

June 5, 2010

I had an e-mail from a gal today (see previous post) who wants to do something contempory and bold, and is moving toward a large-scale damask pattern in bold black. She wants to use this paper on an accdent wall, and do the same treatment in both the living room and the bedroom.

Great idea.

But I asked if she planned to use the same paper in both rooms, and she said, “Yes.” “Boring,” I replied, and besides, it de-emphasises the hipness of such a daring idea, to have the same treatment in two different spaces.

But she really likes the idea, and still wants to go with it.

So I suggested going ahead and using the same pattern in both rooms, but to use a different color way in each room. That way she will have the continuity of the bold look throughout the house, but can tailor the color to match the color scheme of each room.

She loved the idea!

Wallpaper & the Old San Franscisco Steakhouse

June 4, 2010

This week I’m working on an entry way, in a ranch-style home built in the ’60’s.

Under the existing wallpaper, I discovered remnants of the original wallpaper. It was the old “flocked” style, which was popular back then. The pattern was almost always a fleur-de-lis design, and was embellished by a raised “felt” or “velvet” flocking – an actual 3-D papper.

Two drawbacks to those papers – they are the Devil to remove, and … they collect dust!

As they say, everything old is new again… I was just contacted by a gal who is going for the “loft look” and is seeking some bold patterns and colors, like a damask in a huge scale. AND she said she would even consider a flocked paper.

She will have an easy time finding one, since the manufacturers are once again putting such textural styles front and center in their offerings.

Looks like I’ll get my chance after all

June 1, 2010

Related to my previous post…. After the husband came home that night, he looked into the two bathrooms and declared that they looked small and boring, and that they really SHOULD go ahead and re wallpaper the rooms!