Posts Tagged ‘design’

A Classic “Necessary Room” Paper

October 9, 2020

OK, so sometimes you need to spend a little time in the “necessary room.” And what better way to pass the time than by reading a newspaper?

Patterns like this hung in bathrooms have been a running joke for decades. But still fun!

What’s cool is that this beautifully renovated home in the historic Woodland Heights neighborhood of Houston dates to 1910, and the “newspaper” design is pretty period-correct to the era of the home.

There are notes about Prohibition, Anheuser Busch, sewing machines, the lowest price grocery store, vehicle repairs, and all sorts of goods and services – as well as the unique language used in back in that day.

This went in an under-the-stairs powder room. The wallpaper is in the Sure Strip line, in the Magnolia Home collection (Joanna Gaines), and is made by York. It is a very flexible non-woven material, and is pre-pasted. I like working with this material a lot. It will hold up for years, and is designed to strip off the wall easily when it’s time to redecorate.

The interior designer is Stacie Cokinos of Cokinos Design. She works mainly in the Heights area, and mostly on new builds or whole-house renovations.

Old World Look for a Long Master Bedroom Accent Wall

September 27, 2020


Originally, the homeowner wasn’t “really” thinking about adding wallpaper to her master bedroom. But, in the back of her mind, she must have been “kinda” thinking about it, because, after I finished measuring several bathrooms in the home and was poised to leave, she hauled me into the bedroom and asked what could be done to create more of a haven.

I pulled out some samples of patterns I have hung in other homes, and she immediately zeroed in on this one. My sample was the navy blue colorway, but she grasped that wallpaper comes in different color options, and was able to envision this in a softer color to coordinate with the rest of the walls. (Note that that hot pink is a protective plastic sheet – not the color of the headboard!)

To me, the pattern looks like architectural details from old Roman ruins. The distant photos distort the design a bit, so please look at the close up to get a better idea.

Usually I will place a design like this in the middle of the wall. But in the case of this 18′ wide wall, the bed was not centered on the wall, nor was the chandelier. In addition, there curtains on either side of the wall that obscured the corners.

So I opted to center the circular design motif on the chandelier. This meant the bed had to be moved to the right … a whole 3″. This way, as you walk out of the master bathroom, you see the chandelier, the headboard, and the wallpaper design all synced up vertically.

The pattern doesn’t hit the wall uniformly on the right and left sides of the wall, but the drapes cover that. And, on a wall this wide with lots of furniture in front of it, who cares, anyway?!

The wallpaper is by Designer Wallpapers, one of my favorite companies, and was bought at Southwestern Paint. See link on the right for where to purchase wallpaper in Houston. This home is in Katy.

Invisible Kill Point

September 2, 2020


When you hang wallpaper around a room, the point where your last strip meets up with your first strip virtually always results in a patter mis-match, because that last strip is going to have to be cut vertically where it meets up with the first strip – and that means that pattern motifs are going to be sliced in half, leaving you with an abrupt break in the design.

This could mean a 9′ or more length of cut-off design elements. Not very cool, but often it is unavoidable.

But … sometimes it is possible to “kill” the pattern in a less noticeable place. The 1′ or so height over a door is a good option. That’s what I did today.

Bringing the strip on the right to meet with the existing strip on the left was going to leave me with an animal getting chopped in half vertically.

Instead, I cut a wavy vertical line following some of the vine foliage in the pattern. Then I overlapped this onto the existing strip. Once it was all smoothed into place, everything just looked like leaves, and no suspicions that the pattern wasn’t how the artist had originally plotted it out.

Black & White Trees in New Remodel Pantry

August 20, 2020


This 1910 home in the Woodland Heights neighborhood of Houston has been renovated and updated beautifully.

I love the way this active and cheery black-on-white tree pattern compliments the view of trees and greenery outside the window.

This wallpaper pattern is by Anderson Prints. It is a traditional paper material.

The interior designer is Stacie Cokinos of Cokinos Design. She works mainly in the Heights area, and mostly on new builds or whole-house renovations.

Wonderful Stringcloth Alternative to Grasscloth

July 23, 2020

Candice Olson Goes Earthy In The Heights

May 1, 2020

Usually, you expect Candice Olson wallpaper designs to be full of glitz and shimmer and glamour. In both theme and sheen, this one is much more earthy.

This is the main living area of a beautifully and respectfully renovated 1895 home in the Woodland Heights neighborhood of Houston. Like most contemporary re-dos, the walls in this home are mostly white. The original-to-the-house fireplace was getting lost in that sea of white.

To the rescue comes this chocolate-brown wallpaper pattern with 3-D raised-ink impressions of Queen Ann’s Lace flowers. To keep with Candice Olson’s “glam” vibe, the stems are printed in gold ink. The dimensional quality of the ink syncs with today’s trend toward textured materials.

The dark hue really makes the fireplace stand out, yet the white flowers keep the look from being foreboding, and tie into the white used in the rest of the room.

I love the way the nature design and earthy color add an organic element to the room.

This wallpaper is made from a very sturdy non-woven material, which has a high fiberglass content. In fact, you could readily see the fibers, especially when the material was torn. Which was quite hard to do, because one selling point of the non-woven materials is their strength and durability.

These papers are made to stay intact and strip off the wall easily and in one piece, when it’s time to redecorate. They also do not expand when wet with paste, which means there is no booking time or delay between pasting and hanging. And your measurements will be accurate.

Non-wovens also offer the option to paste the wall instead of the paper. Although, in most circumstances, I prefer to paste the paper, for many reasons. Although this material is thick and stiff, it was not difficult to wrap it around the corner to the right in the photo.

The interior designer for this job is Stacie Cokinos, of Cokinos Design, and her jobs are mostly in the Heights area.

The wallpaper manufacturer is York.

Classic Look in Historic Home in the Woodland Heights

April 23, 2020


This large 2-story home was built way back in 1985 – a whole 12 years before the Woodland Heights (Houston) neighborhood in which it sits was platted and developed. It just underwent a major renovation, but retains most of its original details, such as floor plan, windows, moldings, flooring, pocket doors, and much more. There are several large, regal live oak trees on the property.

The homeowner chose this classic damask pattern with a weathered look for all four walls of the dining room. It perfectly suits the room.

It took me about two hours of measuring, plotting, engineering, hanging, removing, re-hanging, yada, to get the design to perfectly flank either side of the window. All that work was worth it, to have the design fall symmetrically. But the real show-stopper is the view of those oak trees through the window!

This wallpaper is by Designer Wallpapers, and is lovely to work with. The interior designer for the job is Stacie Cokinos of Cokinos Design. She is the go-to designer in the Heights for whole-house remodels and new builds.

I threw in a photo of my work table, just for fun.

Tune in tomorrow, to see the finished room!

Girl’s Nursery – Last Job Before CoronaVirus Shut Down

March 25, 2020


Most work in the Houston area shutters at midnight. I was delighted that I was able to squeeze in this one accent wall, for a baby girl who is to arrive soon.

Top pic shows the room in its original all gray state. The walls were textured, so I troweled on a layer of skim-coat to smooth them. In the second picture you see my three fans (plus the ceiling fan and the home’s A/C system cranking away), working to dry the smoothing compound.

I killed a whole Texas Highways magazine while it was drying. Once dry, I sanded the wall smooth, vacuumed up dust, wiped dust off the wall with a damp sponge, and primed.

This wallpaper was a non-woven material, and could be hung via the paste-the-wall method. I usually prefer to past the paper, for many reasons, but in the case of a simple accent wall like this (and because it was easier than lugging my 7′ long work table and trestles up the curved staircase), pasting the wall was a better option.

Once the strips are cut, I roll them up backwards and secure with an elastic hairband. See photo. This helps get rid of the “memory” of the paper, so it does not want to stay tightly curled up. It also keeps the front of the paper away from the paste on the wall, which helps keep everything clean during installation.

The walls in this room (in the whole house, the husband tells me) are pretty darned off-plumb. I used a few tricks and kept the pattern straight along the ceiling line. But, since I started by hanging my strips true to plumb, by the time the paper reached the corners and the adjoining un-plumb walls, there was no way to avoid the pattern being uneven from ceiling to floor. Kinda hard to see in the photo, but there is about 3/4″ difference in width from top to bottom.

Luckily, once you stand back, that crookedness is not all that noticeable.

Although the paper is mildly pink, the muted color and more sophisticated geometric design don’t scream “baby’s room.” This is a look that will grow with the little girl into her teen years.

This wallpaper pattern is by Engblad & Co., a Scandinavian company, and was bought from my favorite source for good quality, product knowledge, expert service, and competitive price – Dorota Hartwig at Southwestern Paint on Bissonnet near Kirby. (713) 520-6262 or dorotasouthwestern@hotmail.com. She is great at helping you find just the perfect paper! Discuss your project and make an appointment before heading over to see her.

The home is in the Oak Forest neighborhood of Houston.

Powerful Storm Clouds – Cole & Son Nuvolette

March 14, 2020


“Nuvolette” by the British manufacturer Cole & Son is a very popular pattern – but not every room can handle such a strong design. This bedroom in a new townhome on the far west side of Houston is large enough to contain the storm clouds – which will cover all four walls. Talk about drama!

The dark floor and dark woodwork help ground the pattern. The homeowner has a background in interior design, and I can’t wait to see what furniture, bedding, window coverings, and accessories she outfits the room with.

The pattern match is very tricky, and you have to plot everything carefully and confidently before you cut anything. The product comes packaged as an A-B 2-bolt set. On the label it’s noted that one pattern match is straight across, while the next strip is a drop match.

So, essentially, this has a multiple-drop pattern match , played out across four strips of paper – but with even more complicating factors tossed in. It’s a real brain-banger to plot out! I’ve hung it twice, and both times was lucky enough to have a large open area where I could spread out the A and B bolts, and then plenty of time and a distraction-free environment to get my head around the pattern match.

In the picture, you just see a nicely fit-together set of panels. But getting them to that point did take a good bit of engineering! (Especially since “someone” opened the shipping box and removed several of the bolts from their original packaging, so there was no way to tell the A bolts from the B bolts.)

Like most of Cole & Son’s wallpaper, this was a non-woven material. This stuff has a high-fiberglass content, and thus does not expand when it gets wet with paste. This allows you to get accurate measurements that won’t change when the paper is pasted. It also allows you to paste a strip and hang it immediately (no booking time), and takes the pressure off of having a booked strip over-expanding while you fiddle with hanging a difficult strip.

It went up pretty nicely. Tomorrow I will hang the remaining two walls.

The pattern is in the Fornasetti line by Cole & Son, and was bought from my favorite source for good quality, product knowledge, expert service, and competitive price – Dorota Hartwig at Southwestern Paint on Bissonnet near Kirby. (713) 520-6262 or dorotasouthwestern@hotmail.com. She is great at helping you find just the perfect paper! Discuss your project and make an appointment before heading over to see her.

Purple & Silver Transformation for Gal’s Bedroom

February 29, 2020


This 20-something gal’s bedroom is filled with glitter, sparkle, and mirrored furniture. She wanted to pull in the color purple, and, with help of my suggested source below, she found the perfect pattern, and it incorporated her favorite color, plus a bit of silver sheen thrown in!

This wallpaper went on one accent wall, behind the large, tufted headboard.

The photos are throwing off the perspective a bit. In person, you notice the circular and diamond design motifs much more than the vertical swipes. It’s a super look to finish this room.

This wallpaper pattern is by Wallquest, a good company, and was bought from my favorite source for good quality, product knowledge, expert service, and competitive price – Dorota Hartwig at Southwestern Paint on Bissonnet near Kirby. (713) 520-6262 or dorotasouthwestern@hotmail.com. She is great at helping you find just the perfect paper! Discuss your project and make an appointment before heading over to see her.

The home is in the Towne Lake neighborhood of northwest Houston.