• Wallpaper Types and Ideas

    Wallpaper can set the mood for a room more effectively than a mere coat of paint. It can form part of the artwork of your home rather than simply furnishing a background on which to hang the art. Light, cheerful prints can brighten a room while darker designs can immediately add some drama and formality. Wallpaper can turn a room into a flowery meadow or a plaza lined by Roman columns. Many other transformations can be accomplished with wallpaper.

    When considering wallpaper, remember that dark colors can make large rooms seem smaller and light colors can make small rooms seem larger. So if you have a large room that you'd like to make seem a little cozier, choose a darker wallpaper with rich, intense colors to bring the walls a little closer in and surround your guests with artistic design. On the other hand, if the room is already "cozy," you can make it seem a little large with light, airy colors and designs.

    This same principle can be used with ceilings that are a little too low or a little too high. Dark colors will bring a high ceiling down. Light colors will raise a low ceiling a bit.

    Another thing that can affect the perceived size of the room is the size of the design. If you get wallpaper with a large design, it can make the room seem smaller and cozier. If your goal is to make the room seem larger, choose a smaller, more intricate design. Lots of little flowers will make the room seem larger than several oversized blooms.

    As you choose colors, remember that reds, oranges, and yellows can make a room seem sunny and warm. Yellows especially can make a room seem cheerful whereas reds can make it seem passionate. If you prefer the room to seem more cool and aloof, choose blues and greens. If you want the room to seem simple and "down to earth," then earth tones are the right way to go.

    For a formal look that is still light you can try damask wallpaper. Damask is a woven material that was popular in the 15th century and still conveys an old world charm. The wallpaper can be decorated with acanthus leaves or some other design to give it some charm and depth.

    Another type of wallpaper you might like uses crewel designs which look as though the wallpaper has been painstakingly covered with embroidery. These designs can be in the form of flowers or birds or whatever else you can find. The look is taken from Victorian England and from India (when the English were there) as well.

    For a more mysterious, richer look, try wallpaper in an Oriental pattern from China or another country of the Far East. Birds and flowers make nice motifs on richly colored backgrounds. Pagodas and dragons can add a formality and elegance to the scene.

    Paisley patterns can also look nice on wallpaper. The paisley pattern, drawn from organic shapes, first appeared on woven shawls in Kashmir in the 17th century. The pattern is still popular today and conveys a look of refinement and pleasing complexity.

    Simple geometric patterns such as diamonds, lines, checks, dots, and plaids are popular today as well and may be just the right look for you.