Archive for October, 2015

“Whoot” Owls by Trustworth in a’30’s Heights Bungalow

October 2, 2015
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English designer CFA Voysey created wallpaper during the Arts & Crafts period of the 1920’s – 1930’s. Trustworth Studios produces renditions of his patterns that are historicaly accurate, yet suited for the modern American home. This owl-themed pattern is called “Whoot.”

I hung this in a 1930’s bungalow home in a historical district in the Houston neighborhood called the Heights. The homeowner loved it so much, and had such limited space, that she put it in her one unclaimed area – the bedroom hallway. Note the niche for the telephone. Back in those days, homes had ONE telephone (if they were lucky and had the means), and it was in an area accessable to all family members – which meant that there was little privacy while one was talking on the phone.

The paper has to be hand-pasted, and also hand-trimmed to remove the selvedge, which you see happening in the 2nd to last photo.

The ceilings in this room (as well as many / most of the physical elements) were very un-level and un-flat. So I knew I couldn’t plan to have a certain element (like the owl’s head) appear at the ceiling line, because I knew that the changing ceiling line would distort the pattern as it moved horizontally across the room. This also allowed me to plot the baby owls’ settings.

So, instead, I dropped the owls’ heads down to fall below the ceiling line. That way, no owls’ heads get cut off, and, if the ceiling line line moves up and down a little (It DOES!), no one will notice the difference between a half an orange flower at the top of the wall, and a three-quarters of an orange flower in the same. And both the owls and their babies in the nests are perfectly centered, vertically, over the doors.

Too technical?? Here it is, revised.
I also measured and plotted so that the adult owls, and the baby owls in their nests, would be centered vertically in the two short drops above the doors.

This wallpaper is by Trustworth Studios, and is printed to order. It comes with selvedge-edge, which has to be trimmed of by hand (see photo), making sure that the pattern will match one strip to the next.

I love working with Trustworth papers. The product is positively a dream to work with. It trims nicely, seams are invisible, it’s malleable enough to “moosh” it into place when needed, there is no staining, paste residue wipes off, theren’s no abrading or bleeding, although pricy, it’s customer-friendly and easy to purchase (no store or designer needed), and such beautiful patterns!

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Misty, Foggy Wall Transformation

October 1, 2015
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This is a really cool look that is getting a lot of attention these days. The color fades from light to dark as the pattern goes from ceiling to floor. What a surreal effect!

I hung this in the master bedroom of a renovated bungalow in the Houston Heights.

The homeowner originally wanted the “Graphite” color way, which is a misty grey. It was pretty, but I looked out her bedroom window to the beautiful, verdant back yard, and encouraged her to go with the green. A couple of her friends echoed the sentiment, so she ended up going with the green. I think it was just the right choice!

This product is packaged as a 4-panel mural, and the strips must be hung in sequence, from left to right. This wall took three of the 4-panel sets. I plotted so that three panels fell to the left of the windows, and then one whole set of four was used in the section over and under the windows (only a little is shown in the photos). The window area resulted in a lot of waste – all of the paper that fell in the 6′ high area of the windows). The other panel set was used on the wall to the right of the windows – I used three of the four panels on this wall.

I liked the way this worked out, because I was able to keep strips from the same bolts touching one another on each of these three wall sections, minimizing the possibility of paneling. In this way, also, I was able to use the 4-panel sets economically and with minimal waste or color difference.

Besides plotting the use of each panel, we had to plot where to place the pattern. We had 8′ high walls, but 9’6″ high panels. This meant throwing away approximately 22″ of length from each strip. Hmmm…. Do I take that from the top, from the bottom, or split the difference?

For decisions like this, it’s best to get the homeowner’s input. So I called her at work and had her come home to consult. We spread the paper out on my table, held it up to the wall, and butted strips next to one another. We decided that the white area was less important, so I could cut off more at the ceiling line. We also felt that it looked better to have the break line where the color division starts to fall about 1/3 of the way down the wall, but still not lining up with the top of the window molding. This meant I would cut off about 14″ from the top, and that left about 8″ to be trimmed off at the baseboard. As you can see, the balancing turned out very nicely.

This wallpaper is printed on a non-woven substrate, and is a paste-the-wall product. It is somewhat thick, it is stiff, and was a little difficult to work into corners and areas where it needed to be trimmed around window moldings. The seams show a little in the light colored areas, but that is pretty typical of thick non-woven papers. The seams are much less visible in the green sections. From a distance, you don’t notice any of this, and the overall look is fantastic. I would even say mystical.

This wallpaper is by Designers Guild, is called Saraille Grass, and was bought at a discounted price from Dorota Hartwig at Southwestern Paint on Bissonnet near Kirby. (713) 520-6262 or dorotasouthwestern@hotmail.com. Discuss your project and make an appointment before heading over to see her.