Bohemian Chic in a Master Bedroom

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

The walls in this 2nd floor addition to a 1950 ranch style home in west end of the Houston Heights started with a heavy texture and gloss paint.  The project was an 18′ wide accent wall in a master bedroom.

I skim-floated to smooth the wall, and it took a full day of multiple fans blowing at high speed, hitting areas with the heat gun, and alternating between cold air-conditioning and warm forced-air heat to get them to dry.

The third photo shows how they looked after sanding and priming.

The homeowners have a real eclectic taste in decorating, with lots of furnishings and accessories that are vintage, worn, quirky, repurposed, colorful, and the like.  I love this medallion pattern because it goes with the home’s aesthetic… and just look at how it matches the bedspread!

Keeping the medallions straight at the top of the wall took some tweaking, because the walls were not plumb, nor was the crown molding level.  In the end it looks great.

The wallpaper is a non-woven material and a paste-the-wall installation.  The seams were positively invisible.  The paper is by A Street Prints, by Brewster, and came from the U.K.  It was bought at below retail price from Dorota Hartwig at Southwestern Paint on Bissonnet near Kirby. (713) 520-6262 or She is great at helping you find just the perfect paper! Discuss your project and make an appointment before heading over to see her.


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

10 Responses to “Bohemian Chic in a Master Bedroom”

  1. curious_gal Says:

    Hi, would like to ask if maybe because the wallpaper has a light background color that make the seams positively invisible? Thanks!

    • thewallpaperlady Says:

      Hi, thanks for reading my blog. The main reason the seams are nearly invisible is the type of paper this is printed on. It is a thickish non-woven substrate. Non-woven is a newish material that is being used more and more in the wallpaper industry. It is similar to those white envelopes that you cannot tear, and the Ty-Vek that you see wrapping around new homes under construction. But this particular version is thicker and spongier. Plus, the manufacturer did a good job of cutting the material perfectly straight, so there are no “gaps and overlaps” at the seams.
      And you are right – if the pattern was dark and was printed on a white non-woven substrate, it would be much more likely that the seams would show.

      • curious_gal Says:

        Thank you for your response! Your blog is very helpful 🙂 We bought a wallpaper from Brewster A Street Prints from Symetrie book. The installer painted the walls with the matching color of the wallpaper which is dark gray. He thought that might make the seams invisible but sadly, the seams are still visible. Maybe he should have painted the roll while still in bolt with acrylic paint? Could that solve the problem?

  2. thewallpaperlady Says:

    Funnily enough, I hung some A Street Prints just yesterday.
    Here are a few things to know …
    Painting the walls a matching color is a good idea … but … wallpaper is meant to stick to wallpaper primer, not to paint. The surface of primer has crystals that the wallpaper paste can grab ahold of and stick tightly to. The surface of paint is made to be attractive and cleanable. So it’s possible that by painting the wall, he created a surface that is a little less inclined to hold the paper. Once the paper dries, it may shrink a little, and if it’s on a surface that does not provide a good grab, the seams may open up little.
    I would not put paint on the edges of a bolt of wallpaper. Too likely that the paint will seep onto the surface, or dry and stick the edges together. A better option would be to take chalk and run it along the edges of each strip, from the back, so as not to get any on the front. Use artist’s chalk or pastels, but not anything with oil in it – oil can stain wallpaper. Never use Sharpies or any ink (water-based ink is OK).
    The A Street Prints is on a thick, somewhat spongy backing. Because it’s so think, you always have the potential for seams to show. Especially on a dark paper.
    Also, the manufacturers don’t always get perfect cuts when they trim their paper. If the round wheel blade they use to trim the paper is dull, or is wobbly, it will give imperfect cuts. These can show up on the wall as slight gaps. The one I hung yesterday did that … the slight gap showed up at the same point in every pattern repeat.
    These things you can’t fight … you just have to accept some imperfections. Wallpaper DOES have seams, after all. 🙂
    What paste did your installer use? Non-wovens are known for “blushing” or “staining” when hung with certain pastes (Roman’s 880 is the big one for staining). this shows up as blotchy areas that look wet, but never dry out.
    It’s also possible that some paste got on the edges of the paper and got wicked into the seam. This could result in dark seams. If the installer wiped the seams, this could have introduced paste or water into the seams. I have a friend who uses distilled water, for the purpose of not having any chemicals or contaminates that could react negatively with inks or substrates. Many of us have learned to “work clean,” which is to not get any paste on the surface, so you never have to wipe the surface, keeping everything clean.
    Did the installer paste the paper or paste the wall? When pasting the paper, you have to be careful not to slop any paste onto the edges. And when pasting the wall (which is how Brewster says to hang this product), you have to be careful as you position the paper to not slide it into the paste on the wall, which would push paste into the cut edge of the paper.
    Probably, what you have is a dark paper printed on a light substrate. In these cases, the seams will show a bit. That’s why they take photos of wallpapered rooms from a distance. 🙂

    • curious_gal Says:

      Wow you are so accurate! Your questions are so on point. My installer used an adhesive called Metylan (purple) by Henkel. I’m not sure if you’re familiar with that. Where I live, only this product is available for wallpaper adhesive. He used paste the paper because he said if he uses paste the wall technique, there are a lot bubbles or bubbling. He is an experienced installer but for this particular design from Brewster, he had a hard time. Also on the corners, he said the wallpaper won’t bend or follow. I hope you can do youtube videos so we can see you installing diff. kinds of wallpaper 🙂

  3. thewallpaperlady Says:

    That paper IS stiff and difficult to turn outside corners, and it creases when you try to work it into tight spots, like detailed moldings. Personally, I wish they would get rid of that stuff and go back to nice, thin, pliable paper. I hope you will contact Brewster and tell them your experiences. I can tell you that they will immediately say that “it’s the installer’s fault,” which is every manufacturer’s knee-jerk reaction. But I believe that manufacturers should receive feedback on their products. Maybe because you’re a home owner, not the installer, they will listen more carefully.

  4. thewallpaperlady Says:

    Where do you live? Do you have photos? Please send to my e-mail, I’m just curious about what happened. You can prevent something happening if you understand why it happened in the first place. You might invite your installer to join our paperhanger Facebook page – we discuss all kinds of things, including exactly this. Go to Facebook, find the National Guild of Professional Paperhangers, and there is a link to click to request to join the page, wait a few days for approval, and he can join us. Very educational.

    • curious_gal Says:

      I’ll send the photos so you can see. It’s in a new house and I’ll go there later. We haven’t moved in yet. Thanks for the advice regarding NGPP 🙂 Just a question, in case we can’t find a color match with the chalk pastel, what can we do to lessen the seams that are visible?

  5. thewallpaperlady Says:

    The chalk goes on the edges of the paper BEFORE it’s hung on the wall. Now that it’s up, you are pretty well stuck with what you have . It doesn’t always work great, anyway.
    There are some other tricks that can be used once the paper is up (coloring with water color or acrylic craft paint) but I would NOT do that with a non-woven paper. The surface is rough and porous and the paint would probably soak into the paper and you’d have a wide blotchy area down each strip. I had one client who insisted I do that, and it looked good while it was wet from my wiping the seam, but I know that as soon as it dried, she was left with a haze down every seam.
    At this point, I think you are best off just enjoying the beautiful pattern and your nice home, and stop focusing on the seams. Some jobs / papers, just look like that. In the grand scheme of things, it’s relatively minor.

    • curious_gal Says:

      The installer bought a gouache set and i think he tried it in a coated vinyl paper (not nonwoven). He said it lessened the visible seams. Thanks for all your advice. I will try to do the chalk pastel on our other room. We’re planning to put dark blue wallpaper.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: