Wallpaper revival

Just about anything goes when it comes to embracing the current trends for papering your walls!

Wallpaper is enjoying something of a renaissance at the moment, in line with the current home design trend to mix it up, keep it eclectic and not too matchy matchy in your look.

So that means you’re not committing a design crime if you put flowers with stripes, or spots with geometrics. It’s about what works for you and makes you love your home.

That said there are a few rules when using wallpaper. Often, less is more, so start with just one or two walls in a room, painting the remaining walls in a colour that works in with the tones in your wallpaper.

In the larger open plan spaces so typical of many Australian homes where kitchen and living areas are one giant space, define one area of the space with paper and keep the rest of the walls plain. It’s even OK to stop the wallpaper half way along the wall if that’s all the space you want to define.

And, says Porter’s Paint’s Sarah Geha, it’s important to determine which mood you want to set when selecting a wallpaper. Cosy and warm, or bright and light? And how much lighting does the room have? These factors will steer you in the direction of colour and style. Take into account the room’s size – horizontal stripes will widen a room whilst vertical stripes and shapes will add volume to a room.

“There currently is a strong movement of texture and depth in interiors and this lends itself beautifully to the use of wallpaper,” Sarah said. “Porter’s Paints has a beautiful range of Grasscloth Wallpaper and also many designs which will give an extra dimension to a space.”

Remember though, that the palm trees or pale blue cloud paper you fell in love with on a hot Sydney day also needs to work on cold wintery mornings so ensure your choice works all year round, on both bright and dull days. Sample books brought home from the shop or posted to you from the supplier, and stuck to walls for a few weeks prior to buying, will prove invaluable in this decision making process.

Functionality will also determine if wallpaper is suitable and if so which colour – wallpaper in a busy hallway won’t cope with schoolbags, muddy wellies and greasy fingers being slung at it, whereas a bedroom won’t see all that wear and tear.

Some people are put off by worries wallpaper is high maintenance – but the care is relatively simple. Most wallpapers are finished with a clear low lustre varnish to give a general form of protection, but when marks appear, use a clean, lint-free cloth slightly dampened with warm, slightly soapy water and lightly wipe – no scrubbing.

It’s always advisable too, to keep a roll or two back after the papering is done, for accidents when the paper will need to be replaced.