Posts Tagged ‘motif’

Welcoming Room for Mother-in-Law

August 24, 2022
This young couple hosts the mother / mother-in-law a few times a year, and are lucky enough to have a private spare bedroom for her. To make it special, they wanted to jazz up the area a little. Enter this fun and whimsical wallpaper pattern .
The room before was a pretty shade of murky teal – but needed personality and warmth.
The wall started out with a light orange peel texture . I skim-floated the wall, and then sanded it smooth .
Along the baseboard at the floor , here’s the dust from sanding , along with the sanding sponge I use – this is a modern take on the idea of wrapping sandpaper around a block of wood .
I tack painter’s plastic across the wall from ceiling to floor to prevent dust from getting into the room or onto the furniture .
Here’s the wall smooth and primed , ready for wallpaper .
Since this is a dark wallpaper and I want to be sure that the white wall does not peek out from behind the seams, I stripe dark paint along the wall under where the seams will fall. Because non-woven papers don’t expand when wet with paste , it’s simple to measure the width of your strips and plot out where each seam will fall. Use the laser level as your guide . Do a Search here (upper right hand corner) to read more about this technique.
I use craft paint from Texas Art Supply (or any hobby store ), diluted with water from a Gatorade bottle cap , and applied with a scrap of sponge .
Further insurance is taking a chalk pastel (never oil pastel – oil bleeds and will stain wallpaper) and running it along the edge of the wallpaper strip – from the backside to avoid staining the surface – to cover the white substrate the wallpaper is printed on. This is to prevent white from peeking out at the seams , which can happen with dark papers.
Centering the first strip in the middle of the wall, and using my laser level to ensure the strip is nice and straight and plumb .
Note: The strip is not centered on the wall. The dominant pattern element is. Notice that the center of the dominant pattern motif – the white circular flower – is 3.5″ to the right of the left edge. This means that I had to position the left edge of the wallpaper 3.5″ to the left of the center of the wall, in order to get the round white flower to fall down the center of the wall.
When you look again at the finished photo, you’ll notice that the white flower falls down the middle of the walls, and that it also appears at equal distance from both the right and left walls.
Most people wouldn’t be able to put their finger on this symmetry , but it is something they subconsciously notice , and it lends a feeling of orderliness to the room.
As orderly as you can be, that is, with pigs dancing around the meadow dandelions !
Finished accent wall . The three other walls painted in blue were a bit of a surprise, because one would think the more dominant color of green would be used. But with so much green in the wallpaper, green on the walls, too, would have been too much, perhaps. I like the cool feeling that the blue creates .
There is plenty of the exact same blue in the wallpaper pattern to tie the walls and wallpaper together.
Close up shows the stamped printing technique .
You’ve gotta love a frolicking pig in a hand-knitted sweater!
This pattern is called Hoppet Folk and is in the Wonderland line by Borastapeter , a Scandinavian company .
It’s a nice, sturdy but flexible non-woven material that can be hung via the paste the wall installation method .
In addition, this product will strip off the wall easily and in one piece , with no damage to your walls, when it’s time to redecorate.
This is a very popular pattern, and I’ve hung it more times than I can count, just in the last two or three years. It does come in other colors – but most people gravitate toward this black version.
The townhome is in the Rice Military area of central Houston .

Overscaled Tropical Mural Works Like Wallpaper

August 19, 2022
What an ultra-cool pattern ! And jungle foliage is a popular concept right now. This one really fills the space! What’s cool is that this accent wall is covered in a mural , rather than a traditional wallpaper pattern with repeating motifs .
But it’s being used like a wallpaper, by placing it on all four walls of this room .
This is in a new book by York , which is one of my favorite brands. It comes in a set of six panels.
I didn’t get to check if it’s a set size or if it can be custom-sized to fit different height walls. But it does continue from one mural to the next, meaning that you can place murals next to each other and have the pattern continue around the room.
Dorota at the Sherwin-Williams on University in the Rice Village has this product. (713) 529-6515
wallpaper installer houston

Retro Look in Kitchen

July 8, 2022
Breakfast area before
Breakfast area after … with my work table set-up still in the middle of the room.
Kitchen sink / window area before.
Finished
This fruit-and-floral motif is a very retro look, which was popular in the 1950’s – early 1970’s . The background looks like linoleum tiles – very period-appropriate.
Close-up.
Exclusive Wallcoverings saw the current interest in retro / vintage looks, and designed this very appropriate pattern.
This was a thin and very flexible non-woven material , and was a delight to work with.
As are all non-wovens, this is designed to strip off the wall easily and in one piece when it’s time to redecorate.
To install , you can paste the paper or paste the wall .
This home is in the Lexington Woods area of Spring , ( north Houston ).

Easing the Look of the Kill Point

May 10, 2020


When hanging wallpaper, the last corner (kill point) of a room virtually always ends in a pattern mis-match. That’s why you try to tuck it in an inconspicuous corner, like a short strip over a door.

In this case, I was going to end up with a medallion that got chopped in half vertically. Not horrible, because that is just the nature of the beast. But I had an idea to make it look better.

Using my straightedge, I sliced off the medallion. Then I found a scrap of wallpaper that was plain white (the background color) and trimmed that to fill the width where the medallion had been. Success!

But there was still a quarter medallion showing at the ceiling line on the adjacent wall.

My solution was to again take some left over wallpaper. I cut a shape that mimicked the motif on the wall, and pasted it on top. Nice!

Only problem is, the paper is somewhat translucent, and so a “ghost” of the image under the paper is showing through.

No problem. I cut another patch, just slightly larger to “feather out” the light bump from the difference in heights of the patches. Once it was pasted on top, it occluded the “shadow” of the medallion. From the floor, you can’t see a thing.

In the final photo, the distance between the medallions is wider than it “should” be – by maybe as much as 2.5″. But this is barely noticeable, and is way better than having a chopped-in-half medallion below plus a quarter medallion above.

Centering the Wallpaper Pattern Makes for a Balanced Look

April 8, 2020

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It takes a lot more work, time, plotting, and math, but centering the wallpaper pattern motif on a dominant element in the room (the sink faucet) is a nice touch. Once the mirror is in place, the effect will be even more important.

Often, it’s one of those things that people can’t put their finger on unless I point it out, but it makes the whole room look more balanced and it just feels right.

Hidden Image – What Do You See?

July 3, 2018

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I loved the way this pattern looks in the entry of this Katy-area home. It’s funny how your mind works. I took a close up photo of the pattern motif – and almost gasped when I saw it! There is an image hidden in this design. At least, I can see it. Can you?

Some people see a man, some see a woman. Clothing can vary, but all see the figure holding something. What do you see?

Here is what I see: A king wearing a crown and beard, with a hairy chest (or possibly armor), clutching dumbbells in each hand, sitting cross legged like a Buddha.

What do you see?

Transforming a Stark Hallway

October 7, 2017

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This young couple in the Garden Oaks neighborhood of Houston has a beautifully updated and furnished 1940 ranch style home. But they wanted to up the volume, so to speak, and thought that this hallway, which slices through the center of the home, would make a fine focal point.

I’ve hung this classic damask pattern twice before, and was carrying around a sample of it when I visited them for an initial consultation. They liked it immediately, and, after considering several other patterns, decided on the damask.

To make the area really special, they added a chair rail and crown molding.

It’s hard to get a good shot of a long, narrow hallway. But you can see how the color and pattern adds warmth and dimension to the space, and the lightly pearlized shimmer of the paper definitely adds a touch of understated glamor.

Since the chair rail was a main feature of the room, I positioned the pattern so that the bottom of the damask motif landed just above the chair rail. Likewise, the top of the motif sits just below the crown molding. This looks a lot better than having part of the design chopped off in mid-motif.

This wallpaper is by Designer Wallpapers, and was delightful to work with. It was bought at below retail price from 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.

In fact, the couple is going to meet with Dorota tomorrow, to choose a complimentary paint color for the bottom portion of the walls.

Clever Kill Point

January 1, 2017

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The “kill point” in a room is the last corner, where your last strip of wallpaper comes to meet up with the first strip. It almost always results in a pattern mis-match, so you try to hide it in an inconspicuous place.

All of the corners in this bedroom went floor-to-ceiling, and the eye would really notice a 10′ mis-match. So I put the kill point at the top of this corner, about 2′ of mismatch. Then I wrapped the rest of the paper around the corner as I normally do, ending up at the right edge of the door molding. This way, I was able to keep the pattern matching perfectly for the lower 8′ of the corner. Where the lower paper meets the strip above the bar of the rolling door, the thick bar hides the 3″ overlap and mis-matched design .

The pattern motif below the bar does not line up vertically with the motif over the bar, but who the heck is going to notice that? And even the 2′ of mis-matched design at the top of the corner is hardly noticeable, due to the busy pattern.

Beautiful Over Scaled Damask in a Bedroom

December 31, 2016

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Here is an example of a current trend in wallpaper designs – a traditional motif like this damask, but blown up to be very large, and in unexpected colors. This taupe-on-taupe goes amazingly well with the builder’s choice of color on the woodwork. A damask is a traditional design, but in this over scale size, it has a bit of sass, and works nicely with the room’s “modern rustic industrial” features, like the rolling wooden barn door.

The room was meant to be a home office, but this young family is using it for “Grandma’s room.” Grandma visits weekly, and the homeowner wanted her room to be inviting and spa-like. Accent colors will be a murky turquoise, with bits of lighter turquoise, which are superb spa colors.

The paper was bought from Walls Republic, and is a non-woven material and was installed with the paste-the-wall method. The house is in the far eastern edge of the Houston Heights.

Crooked Walls = Wrinkly Paper

December 3, 2016

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Walls in homes are usually never perfectly plumb, just as ceilings and floors are never perfectly level. Not a problem if you’re painting. But if you are hanging wallpaper, that wallpaper wants to hang straight, and so it wants a straight wall to hang on to.

All of which is a long-winded way of saying that if a wall is crooked, bowed, or off-plumb, wallpaper will have difficulty hanging butted up against it.

In this case, I had turned a strip of wallpaper around an outside corner – very tricky for several reasons, and more so because virtually no outside corner is perfectly plumb, which compounds the trickiness. If you wrap wallpaper around a wall / corner that is not plumb / straight, the far edge of the wallpaper will likewise become bowed or un-straight. So when you go to butt the next strip of wallpaper against this one, one straight edge will not be able to find another straight edge to “marry with,” and the strips will want to gap or overlap. Not good.

So what I did was, once I got around the outside corner, I made sure that the far edge of the strip of wallpaper was plumb and straight. I used a 6′ magnesium straightedge and a 4′ level as guides.

But making the far edge of the wallpaper strip comply to plumb caused the body, or central area, of the wallpaper strip to become wrinkled due to excess material. Thankfully, this was a forgiving pattern.

What I did was, I cut along some lines of the wallpaper design motif. This created some relief, so I could ease out the wrinkles and smooth the paper against the wall. VoilĂ ! The wrinkles and stress on the paper are gone; cuts, splices, and overlaps are invisible, and the the far edge of the paper is straight and ready to butt against the next strip of wallpaper.