Posts Tagged ‘toile’

Soft Seafoam Toile in a River Oaks Powder Room

September 6, 2018


I loves me a vintage home! The sink and black & white tile floor in this under-the-stairs powder room were original to the 1945 home in the River Oaks subdivision of Houston. The homeowner appreciates traditional style, and fell in love with this soft charcoal-on-seafoam toile wallpaper pattern by Stroheim & Roman. I think it’s a perfect choice!

The walls were textured and had to be smoothed before the new paper could go up. (See other posts.) The wallpaper was thicker and stiffer than most, and so the seams showed more than I would have liked. Dim lighting in the room helped with that. 🙂 It also has no protective coating, so the family will have to be careful not to touch the wallpaper (such as when clicking the light switch) and not to splash water on it (such as when reaching for a hand towel).

The homeowner held the wallpaper for a long time before contacting me to “finally” get the room decorated and the paper up. Once the paper was up, both the wife and the husband exclaimed how much they loved the look, and that they needed to find more rooms to wallpaper!

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Wallpaper – From Pastoral Toile to Jailhouse Brick

April 2, 2017

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This powder room started out with a classic French toile in yellow-on-red, on all four walls. It was a popular look – for the mid-Century. The homeowner wanted something both updated and rustic, with a little texture tossed into the mix.

I love the shot of the two patterns next to each other, with the new brick slowly eating up the tired, outdated French toile.

This paper came as a sort of a mural, with three 9’10” panels per bolt. It was intended to not be repetitive, so it had a long pattern repeat and a multiple-drop pattern match. (MDPMs are way too complicated to discuss here.) The look is attractive, because it minimizes the repetitiveness of a design popping up in the same place on every strip. On the other hand, MDPMs are the Devil to figure out, and they eat up a lot of paper, too.

Some of the photos show off the realistic pattern and feelable texture. To be honest, I really liked the product. Well, at least while I was working with the first bolt. It stuck nicely to the wall, turned corners tightly, and the seams were all but invisible. The rustic b5rick pattern looks super behind the dark oil-rubbed-bronze light fixture and faucets.

Then I needed to open a new bolt of paper for my next strips. The packages were not marked as to run or batch numbers. Interestingly enough, there was a slight color difference between “Bolt A” and “Bolt B.” Surprisingly, the color difference was not easy to spot, once the paper was on the wall.

Even with careful packaging, there had been damage to some of the edges of the wallpaper. Besides the banged edges, and paper backing showing white at the edges so I had to take an oil pastel artist’s material to color the edges of each strp. In addition, there was a tad bit of curl in the vinyl at the edges of the bolts of wallpaper. What this translates to is, many of the seams in the room did not lie down as tight and flat to the wall as I would have liked. See photos. I would have been happier with tighter seam joins, but the homeowners thought it all looked lovely.

This wallpaper pattern is by Debbie McKeegan for Digetix, a British company, and was bought on-line directly from England.

Sweet Fairy Tale for a Baby Girl’s Bathroom

November 26, 2016
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This mother is crazy about her just-learning-to-walk daughter, and wanted to do something special for the little girl’s room, starting with the bathroom.

Originally, the mother was pretty sure she wanted pink and white stripes. On our initial consultation, I assured her that stripes are classic and safe. Then I encouraged her to explore more options – there is a whole world out there of wallpaper patterns suitable for children, from sweet little girls to raucous boys to patterns that will remain appropriate from toddlerhood through the teen years.

I am glad that she took my advice. And she is, too. In fact, she is positively thrilled with the soft color and sweet charm of this storybook wallpaper pattern. Look closely, and you will love it, too!

This wallpaper is in the Jane Churchill line, by Cowtan & Tout, a British company. The design features Winnie the Pooh and friends, and is called “One Hundred Acre Wood.” It comes in several colors, it is positively adorable, and, in fact, I have another client who is planning to use this same paper and colorway in a few weeks.

This wallpaper pattern is printed on what we call a British “pulp paper” stock, and will stay nice and tight to the wall, even under humid conditions. There is no vinyl coating, though, as with many American alternatives, so staining is a possablity. To prevent this, the homeowners must be careful not to touch the paper with their hands or splash water onto the paper while using the sink.

I hung this cute story book toile pattern in pink-on-white in a little girls’ bathroom in a newish home in River Oaks. This wallpaper is by Cowtan & Tout, and was bought at a discounted 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.

From Country Child’s Room to Cozy Guest Room

September 12, 2016
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With it’s bold brown color, contrasting horizontal band, and stenciled pattern, the original treatment of this room had taken a lot of planning and careful execution. To me, it had a country look, but I am told that the room sported a “cars & trucks” theme, and was used by a little boy. See first photo.

The new homeowners plan to use the room as a guest bedroom, though, and wanted something more grown up and more soothing. This neutral-toned Chinoiserie (Oriental-themed) toile (two-color pen-and-ink type drawing of daily life scenics) perfectly transformed the room.

The walls had a fairly heavy texture, which I skim-floated the first day, then sanded smooth and primed the second day. I love the second photo, with the new paper juxtaposed against the freshly-prepped walls.

The second-to-last photo shows my kill point, where the last strip meets up to the first strip, which virtually always ends in a mis-match. I pulled a few tricks out of my hat, and I think I disguised this mis-matched corner nicely.

This wallpaper is on a non-woven substrate, and is by Brewster. It was more pliable than many non-wovens, and was pretty nice to work with. The seams were practically invisible, and even going around corners and windows, the paper performed well. It was bought below retail price from Sherwin-Williams, at the Durham & Washington store, in Houston.

Someone Had Fun Putting This Paper Up!

July 27, 2016
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I stripped this wallpaper off a powder room in River Oaks (Houston) today. It wasn’t the new homeowners’ taste, and I can pretty well understand why they wanted it gone, but, as a paperhanger, I had to admire the planning and plotting and math and workmanship that went into laying this out and putting it up.

Someone cut all those strips to the appropriate widths, perfectly centered both the striped and the toile patterns, and precisely mitered the corners. Some of the paper was overlayed and some was inlaid (double cut).

It was expertly hung and took a lot of patience and planning and precision. It was a treat for me to see this!

Transforming a City Home Into a British Pub

April 9, 2015

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This Memorial-area couple had a vision, and, boy, did they make it happen. This is the dining room of a ’60’s ranch-style home. But they wanted to use it as a pool room / man cave / pub. Friends kept telling them to make it sleek and contemporary, as is in vogue right now. But the homeowners followed their hearts, and created this very unique and authentic room.

That is real brick applied to the far wall. There is a dark, rustic wooden floor, and dark brown crown molding that resembles old wooden beams. The same dark paint covers a chair rail. Below the chair rail is a thick texture that resembles the stucco on homes in 1500’s Sherwood Forest.

Next came the wallpaper – a classic toile of a hunt scene, in a reddish brown on cream, which perfectly compliments both the paint color and the brick wall. I totally love the way this room is coming together – all they need to do is add the pool table, maybe some tarnished brash light fixtures, haul in some comfy leather chairs, and then light the cigars!

This wallpaper is printed on a pulp stock, and is by the British company Sanderson, from the Toile Collection (“Toile” means a line drawing in one color on a plain background, usually depicting blissful scenes from rural life in Jolly Ole England.), pattern # 47-63268 “Fox Hunting.”

Beautiful Classic Toile in a Breakfast Room

December 11, 2014

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Here are “before” and “in-progress” shots of a breakfast room in a ’60’s ranch house in Pasadena (Houston). Originally, there was dark brown paneling with thick grooves between panels. The homeowner “always wanted a wonderful kitchen,” and, after living there nearly three decades, had the kitchen redone – and it’s really nice, with good choices and great workmanship.

Then I came in and hung this beautiful classic and cheery blue-on-yellow toile pattern in the adjoining breakfast area. Someone told me that a true toile will always have some people playing, and some people working. In the last photo, I’d say that counts as “play.” 🙂

I was originally going to prep the paneling for wallpaper, but the homeowner had the contractor tear out the paneling and install new Sheetrock (first two photos), which was more expensive, but a much better option. An interesting side note is that the money she saved because I did not have to prep the paneling, was re-directed to repapering the master bathroom – which still had the original wallpaper from the 1960’s.

This wallpaper is by Thibaut Designs, and was a pre-pasted pattern. It was bought through Sherwin-Williams, and shipped directly to their home. The homeowners chose to paint the bottom 1/3 of the wall below the chair rail with a solid yellow, in a tone slightly darker than the wallpaper. I like this, because, since it’s on the bottom of the wall, the darker color adds visual weight, and helps balance the wall / room.

More Pics – Dormer Windows are Finished

September 12, 2014

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Digital ImageHere are more photos of this week’s project. It took me nine hours to get the three dormer windows papered. I don’t usually love the thick non-woven wallpapers, but on this job, the nearly indestructible quality of the paper and the paste-the-wall feature helped greatly.

Note that with a room like this with so many odd angles, there will be MANY mis-matched areas. I discussed this with the homeowner during our first meeting. I engineered carefully before starting, to put the mismatches in the least-visible spots, and to disguise the junctions where the pattern did not match. Really, this toile is the perfect pattern for this room, not only for it’s romantic feel, but because the busyness of it hides most of the mis-matches.

Unusual Toile Going Up

September 10, 2014

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WP_20140909_0021 (2)“Toile” is a French word for a pattern that usually is a sort of pen-and-ink drawing on a plain background, typically 1700’s ladies on swings being serenaded by handsome shepherds, while hunters shoot rabbits in the background. But toiles can depict other scenes, too, like shipyards, or even fairy tales or animals.  They are almost always a very sweet look.  This one is unusual because it looks more like a black & white photograph, than the typical line drawing.

Here I am, working a 14′ long strip around an outside corner in an attic bedroom with VERY unplumb walls. Luckily, the homeowner said, “I am not picky, and I know there will be mismatches and imperfect areas.” That is true… this room has devilishly high ceilings, calling for my 16′ extension ladder and a lot of careful balancing, unplumb walls that require losing a significant portion of the pattern in order to hang the paper plumb, and vaulted ceilings plus three dormer windows, all of which will cause multiple mis-matches around the room.

Oh, and let’s not forget the FIFTY ONE stairs that must be climbed to get from the street to the job site. Try doing THAT with a 50lb bucket of wallpaper paste! (I was lucky – the contractor and his helper were on-site this morning, and carried all my heavy stuff up the stairs for me.)  🙂

This job was originally scheduled for November, but I had another job postpone, due to delays in construction, so I was able to move this nice lady up.  Her home remodel has been dragging on for months, due to all sorts of unexpected and unexplainable delays.  The homeowner remarked, “Thanks so much.  You are the most dependable person on my job!”  🙂

This wallpaper is printed on what’s called “non-woven” stock, and is by Cole & Son, a British company, 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.

 

 

I Got Out My Paper-Stretcher ;)

May 17, 2014

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Digital ImageWhen wallpapering a room, the last corner is usually going to be a mis-match. Usually it’s put behind a door, or somewhere where the drop (length) is short, so you don’t see much of it.

In this powder room in Missouri City, the last corner was a full-length drop, and very visible. Even though this toile pattern is pretty busy and the mis-match would have been a little obscured, I wanted all four corners to have the proper pattern. So I did something different.

Instead of putting the mis-matched spot in the corner, I opted to put it over the door (top photo). The mis-match would only be about a foot tall, as opposed to eight feet. And, really, how many people look up over the door when they’re in a bathroom, anyway? still, a mis-match smack in the middle of a space is much more obvious than one in a corner. But I figured that with the busy toile, I could disguise it well enough.

I was really lucky this time, because, coming around the room from the right, the pattern almost matched up with the pattern on the left. But there was still a gap of about 2″.

What I did was … see how there are two stripes, a light one and a dark one, that are slightly wider than the others? I carefully spliced pieces together, widening two stripes ever so slightly, to help fill that gap. Because of this, the pattern also repeated itself – Look very closely and you’ll see how the castle in the middle of the photo has double elements, and how the goat has two butts.

I used a pencil to doctor the lines on the castle, so it would look less repetitive. The goat’s hiney I left alone. I mean, who’s looking a that?

Now look to the right, and you’ll see that a portion of the fence in the design at the upper right repeats itself. What I did was, I split the strip of wallpaper between a light and a dark stripe, then took another, identical, strip, and from the same design, cut out a chunk with a light and a dark stripe. On the wall, I pasted this thin strip in between the original split strip.

In the finished header (the strip over the door), you can barely notice the repeated design elements, nor the slightly wider stripes. This looks much better than the alternative – a full-length mis-match in a very visible corner of the room.

Nothing special going on in the bottom picture; it’s just showing the pretty pattern. This wallpaper is by WallQuest