>> Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Lately I've been getting kind of obsessed with wallpaper. I've looked in paint & wallpaper shops, online and of course on ebay. I love vintage wallpaper but that's mainly because I love vintage design, not authentic old wallpaper specifically. Many of the modern designs these days are gorgeous and I do like those as well.

The main inspiration has been seeing wallpaper in magazines and decorating books. I was haunted by a magazine photo featuring Neisha Crosland's "anemone" paper and finally found out whose design it was. I also notice wallpaper in movies occasionally. I could not believe how gorgeous the silvery bird and branch wallpapered bedroom in Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day was. (Which incidentally was an adorable movie with many of my favourite actors.) And finally my friend Jaimie used an inspiringly gorgeous modern floral paper in her newly renovated kitchen, and another friend, Andrea, papered her bathroom in anthropologie "Blossom" paper and it looked so perfect.

While searching around I found a few sites I really like. Plus Jaimie (who works at Canadian House & Home) sent me some fab links, such as ferm living, walnut wallpaper, and Thibaut (very traditional). I found one site that will mail you samples and it seems like a very practical (and affordable) way to buy wallpaper. I bought a few samples and it really does make a difference if you can see them in person.

the secretaries with new (vintage) bentwood chair - needs repainting!

I'd love to paper some walls but I think wallpaper is more personal than paint, and it might be hard to leave behind if we sold the house (+ effort + expense). Which we might do in a few years. I keep flip-flopping on that, because the more work we do the more lovable our house becomes, but it does have certain aspects that are limiting - such as its size. So we probably won't be here for many years. But who knows. See? Flip-flopping.
So I decided the best way to indulge the wallpaper fixation was to decorate a cabinet. And I found some lovely vintage paper on ebay. It has a lattice pattern (which I love) and flowers (which I love) and the colour scheme is fresh with light green and lots of white. It's a bit on the sweet side but I'm ok with that. Luckily when it arrived it was even nicer than in the photos. Vintage paper is a bit fragile so when cutting it I recommend a fresh blade and doing the cuts slowly.
I was planning to line the inside of the fabric cabinet, and I still may but I'm not sure about painting it still.. In the meantime I was thinking that the secretary desks are just a bit too cluttered-looking for the front room (which serves so many purposes). So I've added the wallpaper to their doors and it's just what they needed. Well I think so anyway. Now if only I could wallpaper my ugly printer and scanner. I'll have to make some sort of enclosed shelf for those...


Nichole April 02, 2008  

Wow! They look so pretty! The wallpaper isn't something I would naturally gravitate for upon first sight, but seeing it the way you used it makes me love it.

Your secretaries are great by the way. Where did you get those?

Kumi April 02, 2008  

How pretty!!
Wonderful work!

Johanna Masko April 03, 2008  

Those cabinet doors look lovely! So picturesque! I need new paper behind the glass doors in my kitchen. It's just plain rice paper now. Maps perhaps?

Nanette Merrill April 03, 2008  

I love wallpaper too. Love it. I've had it in every house we've lived in but in the last 2 years have exterminated it. Paint is in. Now probably that I don't have any wallpaper will come back. I love the vintage look of it from the turn of the century 1900 look. I grew up in a home with 13 feet high ceilings and wallpaper in nearly every room. I loved it. Your cabinet is darling. What a great way to bring it into your home.

Anonymous,  April 03, 2008  

awww, thanks for the shout out, Claire! But looking at those ferm living and walnut links just makes me wish I had more rooms to paper. Sigh... I think wallpapering more than one room in a condo is probably overkill. Right? (can there really ever be too much of a good thing??).

Claire Louise Milne April 03, 2008  

I don't think another room would be too much wallpaper.. you have a nice spacious place. I suspect I'll be putting some more paper up..

Nichole: The first secretary desk was from a shop that no longer exists but was owned by the owners of Au Lit on Yonge St. The second was scooped up for $50 on craigslist and I refinished it myself to match the other one. It was in a disastrous state...

Diana Wolf April 03, 2008  

Oh, so pretty. I love secretary desks. I never would have thought of putting two in one room but as soon as I saw it I yelped! LOL
(Now I want a wall full)
BTW, I saw someone do an old refrigerator in wallpaper on Apartment Therapy.com I don't remember the designer but it looked great. ,aybe the scanner and printer?
Thanks for the inspiration.

pedalpower April 05, 2008  

It looks so pretty. Great way to get a little wallpaper beauty without having to cover the walls with it1

Junie Moon April 08, 2008  

Your wallpaper project is gorgeous. What a wonderful way to use it; the results are gorgeous.

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