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Is Wallpaper 'Out'?

artlover13060
15 years ago

I have a very small powder room that is the only bathroom on the main floor. It is really blahsville: 3' X 7', no windows or architectural interest. I can't afford a new vanity/sink but I want to spruce it up with new mirror, light, towel rings, etc. I'm thinking of wallpaper and found a great pattern that I love that repeats the colors in the foyer and front hall. The bathroom is off the front hall. Is wallpaper out of style?

Comments (67)

  • pattiem93
    15 years ago

    Thank you Deborah and acountryfarm! Here's the kicker-that powder room cost us $3.00 to paper! LOL Lowes recently ran a clearance of all wallpaper since they will no longer be stocking it in the store. ALL rolls (double rolls) were a dollar each! That was originally 72.00 a roll and we paid 1.00. Have to love that! The ceiling is a bronzey greenish gold

  • 2ajsmama
    15 years ago

    artlover - your PR sounds like mine!

    pattie - I love your PR - never would have thought of tying tassel on towel (not that it would stay) or hanging fine art. Of course we have a farmhouse with an old washstand as vanity (if I can ever get a sink put in) so that won't work. But I just have to go to Lowes and look at the WP now! Maybe for master...

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  • artlover13060
    Original Author
    15 years ago

    Thanks to everyone for their great ideas and thoughts. I never thought I would put wallpaper up again. IÂve been in my house for 20+ years and when we built it I had wallpaper in the kitchen and all three bathrooms. And yes, it was the 80s stuff. My color scheme for the whole house was soldier blue and dusty rose. When I finally got all that stuff off the walls I said never again. It took me a year to get the wallpaper off the walls in the master bath due to an incredibly STUPID DIY mistake. (Scored 1" diamonds with an X-acto knife instead of going to Home Depot to buy a wallpaper scorer.) I guess decorating DIY must be like childbirth. After a while you forget the pain and are ready to do it again.

    High end designer is exactly what I have in mind for this little room. I love modern takes on classic patterns, like the new damasks.

    Pattiem93: I LOVE your powder room. You have created exactly the effect IÂm going for. ItÂs even the color IÂm going with! Do you mind sharing the pattern name? Was the wainscoting their before? Is it also in the hall outside the bath.

    I want to make a statement in this little room, and I generally donÂt care whatÂs in style, but I donÂt want it to be so out of sync with fashion that guests are wondering, "What was she thinking?"

  • Sueb20
    15 years ago

    I'm generally in the "I hate wallpaper" camp too, but sometimes I see a pattern and think, "well, maybe..." I think powder rooms are great spaces to use wallpaper. Pattiem93's room is a great example. We have a very small mudroom and the walls, which are painted beige now, are getting pretty beaten up. I'm considering a wallpaper there. I just need to find something I love. Then convince DH to put it up!

  • palimpsest
    15 years ago

    If you look at magazines for the consumer that tend to be less trend specific, e.g. Architectural Digest, and Southern Accents, wallpaper has never stopped being a part of either their editorial or advertising content. Similarly with trades such as Interior Design magazine (which is some ways very trend - focused) wallcoverings are notable in their advertising presence through the years.

    Interestingly enough, someone brought up venetian plaster, and on this point we will just have to agree to disagree. If one looks at one of the early reintroductions of venetian plaster (one of Martha Stewart's NY apts) the uniform marble-like finish is classicand beautiful but hard to achieve. I think the current fad in DIY venetian plaster bears little resemblance to this, is not easy to do well ( I think most people do a lousy job, sorry,) is Very trend specific and faddish, and will leave people scratching their heads as to how to paint over bee's wax or other waxes.

  • THOR, Son of ODIN
    15 years ago

    Just remember: You can take the maxim:
    "look in your closet to find your decorating style" too far.

    hth, Lena

  • pattiem93
    15 years ago

    Here you go-I even found it on sale (though a bit more than a dollar!) My husband put up the wainscotting and did a wonderful job. Thank you!

    Here is a link that might be useful: Link

  • susieq07
    15 years ago

    Bought my wallpaper at the link above and love it not only does it look like stone it feels like stone, and Yes wallpaper is definitely still and always in..

  • Oakley
    15 years ago

    No.way. First, don't let others tell you what's in and out, if you like it, get it!

    I'm getting ready to put in a gorgeous, drop dead wallpaper on one wall in the DR. I will always have wall paper in the bathroom. Something about it that gives the old charm look.

    My son's house has a beautiful gold and black diamond wallpaper in his powder room, with a contrasting pattern on another wall.

    His whole DR is toile with antique furniture in there. WP is never out. And will never be out, either.

  • Happyladi
    15 years ago

    I think Wallpaper can really make a room special, but I wouldn't wallpaper unless I was planning on staying in the house for a while since it's such a personal choice. If you are planning on living some place for at least 5 years, go for it!

    Also, having stripped wallpaper several times, sometimes it was extremely easy and sometimes it was horrible. What is the best way to put up wallpaper so that it will be easy to remove in the future.

  • acountryfarm
    15 years ago

    Deee -- That Thibaut paper is one of my favs. Just beautiful !!

  • tfm1134
    15 years ago

    It's out in my house! I just got thru taking my DD's baby border off in her room and it was a very unpleasant experience and one I do not plan on doing ever again. Don't get me wrong, there is a lot of wallpaper that I like but not in my house...

  • igloochic
    15 years ago

    LOL Chris don't take it too seriously..this is only decorating, not brain surgery. And I answered the way I did because this question comes up monthly and gets almost boring if someone dosen't stick up for the no wallpaper camp :oP So I decided to do it.

    Mind you, I have hand made wall paper in two rooms :oP and I'm gettting ready to buy a house that will bankrupt me as I need to wallpaper in gad....15 or 16 rooms LOL But since the house is out of fashion anyhoo (over 100 years old) I don't have to worry about decorating trends (or at least current ones).

    No very high end wallpaper has always been in. Mass produced stuff off the rack...not so much :oP

    And on the VP, palimp I think we can actually agree on that one. The current DIY venetian plaster made from sillica and applied with a heavy hand is horrible. Really really horrible. But real VP made from marble or VP with marble and lime (marrimiso...which I'm spelling wrong) applied correctly, ending up looking like silk on the wall, is another never go out of style type finish.

    I shudder when I see that rough finish on walls that the sillica stuff produces. My plaster guy says that the rough walls are taught to people at the DIY stores because it's easy, but it's so inappropriate in a modern home. It can look cute in the right cabin type home, but not in a 1980's ranch :)

    I personally don't think plastering is hard at all if you use real VP. It goes on like butter. I've taught people a few times and the major error all new folks make is to put it on too thick. It can't dry and your wall will have an alligator finish that is not pleasing. A real wall should take at least 3 layers of VP if not 4 or 5. If it's done right, you don't need the wax finish...you can instead just burnish it to the correct silky finish, but in a powder room or wet room I'd use a commercial quality wax over marmarrino (the lime inhibits mold).

    Horrible:
    {{!gwi}}

    {{!gwi}}

    I like this stuff:
    (Back wall)
    {{!gwi}}

    {{!gwi}}

    VP is hard to photograph because the sheen catches the camera wrong so these walls are silkier in appearance than they appear on the screen.
    {{!gwi}}

    {{gwi:1386939}}

    Those walls are smooth and if you slide your hands over them they have a silky/buttery feel. I encourage that because the natural oils in people's skin just enhances it more over time :)

  • palimpsest
    15 years ago

    Borders in painted rooms are a different story IMO.

    One of the things that people hate about wallpaper is taking it down when it hasn't been installed properly. The wall should be well primed and sized prior to hanging paper. Properly hung wallpaper should practically fall off the wall when steamed or treated with stripper.

    Very expensive wallpapers are often hung "archivally" (deGournay, Zuber, Paul Montgomery Studio): This involves muslin, lining paper, and then the paper--this way it can acually be removed intact, say, if the ceiling leaks, or you are moving and want to take it with you, or to sell it.

  • xamsx
    15 years ago

    If you feel the need to wallpaper, get cloth-backed wallpaper. Regardless of who (pro or DIY) does the hanging, removal will be a breeze and your walls will not have to be skim coated (or replaced) at removal. It is the removal that makes people say "never again".

  • 2ajsmama
    15 years ago

    My aunt suggested that I wallpaper under/over/between the windows in my bay (3 separate windows - not a bay window). I shuddered at wallpapering just one end of a 13'x37' room. But I could do a powder room if I could find the right WP. Actually, I'm thinking about beadboard in the PR since it's a farmhouse.

    Don't jump on me, but I'm one of those people who likes border in painted rooms. I think it looks cute in kids' rooms, and I even found a laser-cut one (I know, horrible to repaint unless you take the border off) I think will look nice in MBR. It hides bad cutting-in at ceiling w/o expense of crown molding. I've even used it in bathrooms and made a "backsplash" with same border (in my old house). I forget who, but someone has beautiful toile border on this forum. I'd love to find something like that for my LR.

    I agree you have to have proper prep. I've never had a problem with border, but our first place was a condo we bought at auction in 1992 and the kitchen was wallpapered. It was a greasy mess! Even though it was a tiny galley kitchen, it was such a pain to strip (even with a steam stripper) and then try to repair the walls and paint (lots of Kilz!) I swore never to use wallpaper in any home after that (though this thread is convincing me otherwise).

  • User
    15 years ago

    Oh Igloo, that first pic you labeled "Horrible" would have been my dream bedroom. In 1986. In fact, that overall floral theme reminds me eerily of the look I attempted to create in the house I moved into in '88. My comforter and dust ruffle and flounced (matching, natch) curtains were all nearly identical to the pattern in your pic. I painted my walls pinky-mauve (again, natch), draped every conceivable surface with great swaths of lace, and thought it was the greatest look ever.

    Thank goodness that some things are history ...

    Anyway -- thanks for that little trip down memory lane.
    ;-D

  • igloochic
    15 years ago

    LMAO Jen, that room was probably done somewhere between 83 and 86.

    I have to confess, I once used a border both around the room, and around the window frames (barf) but it was in the 1980's as well (dusty rose and blue hearts and flowers, double barf) and given that everyone was on cocaine in the 80's I confess to that disaster of a room only when I also claim I was high :oP (I never did cocaine mind you...but it's a hell of an excuse for bad decor) LOL

    I had a flowered couch that would be camo in that first room as well LOL

  • acountryfarm
    15 years ago

    Speaking of Venetian Plaster, the real thing is stunning. We really wanted it in new home. Vasari Plaster (Alex Conrad) did the bid which was about $120,000. for entire home. no way could we do it. His work is fabulous though. He goes all over the U.S. & is also the manufacturer. For those of you who don't know, take a look at his website if you want to know more about it.

    Here is a link that might be useful: Vasari Plaster

  • deborahnj
    15 years ago

    Pattiem, do you know if the sale is still going on at Lowes? I may take a trip over tomorrow and check out what they have left.

    Deb

  • pattiem93
    15 years ago

    Hi Deb,
    I honestly don't know about up north. My girlfriend in Long Island asked the same thing and will be running out tomorrow also. Here in NC, I think they're pretty much done
    It's funny, but we always seem to have similar taste, don't we? LOL Great minds think alike!
    Pattie

  • dorothy9_gw
    15 years ago

    pattiem93 your powder room is beautiful. I thought the paper looked very familiar but decided that beautiful room coouldn't have come from Lowes. Our Lowes had it for $3.00 per double roll, I even brought it home but PO put in tile that is a strange color so the paper did not work. Darn that tile otherwise I could have had a beautiful guest bath. The paper that is in there had a border that I for sure did not like so I started pulling it down and the guy painted the paper under the border and his seams are not done professionaly either so it has to go. I did not think of putting up chair rail and painting the bottom part like you did. Wonderful idea, our bath is really small. Wonder if that paper comes in other colors.
    Dorothy

  • chloe_s_mom
    15 years ago

    Gosh, I hope that it is not out, as I've hung wall paper (accent wall) in my kitchen nook, diningroom, hallway, all of Chloe's room, one wall in the masterbed...you get the idea. I've gone crazy and been bitten by the wallpaper bug. Love it. Even trades people and pizza delivery guys have commented on how nice the wallpaper is....though the flooring installer pointed out that in the hallway, it wasn't glued on well, and offer to nail it onto the wall :) I can happily say that I have never considered wallpaper as an option before, and in fact cursed those that have applied wallpaper borders above my kitchen cabinets (wow, warm up near the ceiling). Now I'm thrilled with it! I have some progress pics on this site - I'll hunt for the link.

  • deborahnj
    15 years ago

    Pattiem, definitely! There is a Lowes right next door to my work location, I'll swing by and check it out tomorrow. Thanks for the tip. I was planning on doing something similar with paint but if I can get the look with wallpaper, hey why not!

  • pattiem93
    15 years ago

    Dorothy, it also came in a distressed green that was just a bit brighter. I'm seriously considering a Thibaut or Scalamanmdre for my dining room. Have to convince hubby

  • artlover13060
    Original Author
    15 years ago

    I just picked up a copy of the March issue of Veranda. There is a 50 page section on a designer show house in California - The Great House at Historic Greystone Estate. It is full of wallpaper and lots of other luscious things.

  • oceanna
    15 years ago

    Pattiem, you should be SO proud of your new bath! It's simply stunning. Great work!

    Artlover, funny you should ask as I've been pouring over wallpaper online all day. If I had about $1K laying around I would do my bath in lincrusta. Yummm!!!

    I'm thinking about trying to do this on paintable wallpaper.

    Of course, the other side of my head is screaming, "Do you really want to sand the texture off the walls, and be crawling around like a contortionist behind the toilet? Are you nuts?!"

  • oceanna
    15 years ago

    You wanna see something really neat? There is one company in the whole world, in England, that makes these lincrusta dados. Well, there was. Now there are none. Their antique (about 1900) machine broke, and they've been trying unsuccessfully for a year to fix it. Sad!

    This is one of their only four genuine original turn of the (last) century patterns -- and the only art nouveau one -- with a faux copper finish applied by a real pro...

    .
    .

    Okay, you asked if it's in... here are some (not dados) that are...

  • 2ajsmama
    15 years ago

    Oceana - oh, no, I had actually been looking at those dados since someone mentioned lincrusta! I was thinking of a backsplash, but that could also work in bathroom or maybe even my bay as wainscoting. Of the other 4 you posted, I could really only see #3 in my house - the others seem to modern and too busy for my eye.

    What do you think of #3 in my bay area (maybe I should wait and post pics after trim and blinds are up - blinds are vertical stripe so maybe not). My aunt suggested wallpapering just that end of the room (doing floor-to-ceiling bookcases on the short walls to the sides) but I just can't see wallpaper. We're not doing windowseat at this time b/c we've moved the loveseat there from its Xmas position in front of slider. But I'm afraid to install WP and then strip later!

    {{gwi:1448174}}

  • black-thumb
    15 years ago

    Leave it to designers and those powers that be to put it out there that wallpaper is just not done anymore only to bring it back and make it all the rage at a super increased price to get it.

    Genuis just genius!

    It's your house do what you want.

  • igloochic
    15 years ago

    ajsmomma, I belive number 3 is a wallpaper made out of very thin wood veneer (I could be wrong but I've seen it elsewhere and I think that's the same pattern and color). It's gorgeous stuff but danged pricy. Vern Yip likes to use it a lot.

    That wall does need something. Initially I'd start by painting it a lovely color, like a rust or deep olive green. I think that would make a huge impact and be a really quick and cheap change :)

  • sarahandbray
    15 years ago

    Having a 150-year-old house that I have partially stripped of 8 or 9 layers of paint-encrusted wallpaper, I have to add myself into the "no wallpaper ever again!" camp. Just a miserable job. Feels liberating getting it all off those beautiful, original plaster walls, but what a tedious job!! Uggh!!!

    (obviously, this doesn't sound like the OP's problem--so one layer of wallpaper is no big deal--and no, I think it's actually coming back in fashion, from what I've seen in the magazines)

    However, our dining room in the old farmhouse, has really pretty original dark wainscoting and floor-to-ceiling built-in cabinets on one whole wall. That room, the PO took the time to strip all the wallpaper off and re-papered--it's absolutely perfect with all the dark wood--a creamy background with those antique swirls of beige (quite similar to that Thibeaut stuff everyone was raving about). I absolutely LOVE it and it really dresses the room up nicely. It's peeling now in some spots and looks a bit shabby, but that is one room I think begs for wallpaper.

    So for me, I guess I vote formal dining room as most-likely-to-get-wallpapered...

    Other than that, it can stay in the high-end homes where they can hire people to strip it when they get sick of it!!
    :)
    -Sarah

  • Bumblebeez SC Zone 7
    15 years ago

    Can anyone show me some nice papers under $40 a roll? Do they exist yet?

  • patty_cakes
    15 years ago

    I like wallpaper, have always liked wallpaper, and will continue to like wallpaper, no matter what the 'trend'. Having looked at model homes from coast-to-coast, it seems the more expensive homes always have wallpaper in the powder room, bathrooms, and dining room~you especially see this in the south~IMO, women in the south seem to take their decorating very seriously.

    I will definitely be wallpapering the powder room, and bathrooms in my new home. ;o)

  • Circus Peanut
    15 years ago

    I'm a huge fan of Bradbury & Brabury papers. Done properly, a border can be magnificent:

    Nothing says these schemes couldn't be reproduced with cheaper wallpapers, with a little creativity. I could link Bradbury pics all day, *sigh*, but will send you to the website instead. :)

    Here is a link that might be useful: Bradbury & Bradbury Art Wallpapers

  • debbimc
    15 years ago

    It is funny how some folks seem to know what is "in" & what is "out" Most of us know what is out without asking...like guys in double knit leisure suits with white buckle shoes. LOL. I saw some gorgeous paper in a friends new home--she papered the master bath, the dining --not a high end home but very tasteful--classic--yes she will get tired of it in a few years but it is subtle & classic.

  • patricianat
    15 years ago

    Oceanna, if you are still interested in doing your room with painted wallpaper, you can use one of the anaglypta's at the box stores and paint it a lighter color than you want it to turn out to be (use latex paint just like you would for your drywalls). Once it has dried, get a pot of stain (water soluble) like is used for crafts projects at Michaels, etc., and paint over it applying a thin coat. It will be a bit darker than you want at this point and will be dull looking. Use finest grade steel wool and buff it, which will give it a shine and take some of the darkness off the color, plus give it that aged, dimensional look. I had that as a backsplash in one house, used it in a bathroom in another house. I did not put any sealer over it as a backsplash because the stain that I had on it worked fine and it was a water soluble stain. Lasted many years. I suppose if you do it in a bathroom where it gets lots of moisture, you could use one of the sealer coats in a water soluble product as well as what I did. It really has a beautiful look, looks to be more expensive than it really is. I used red once (a chinese red) and put a walnut stain over it and buffed it and it looked like tooled leather.

  • artlover13060
    Original Author
    15 years ago

    Hi. I'm the OP. Funny that Debbi resurrected this thread. I just finished papering the room that prompted my question about wallpaper. I love the room and the wallpaper and will post pictures when I get the lights, etc. hung.

  • fauxchick56
    15 years ago

    I papered our tiny powder room ceiling.

  • oceanna
    15 years ago

    Fauxchick, that looks really good.

    Artlover, did you ever post your pictures?

  • artlover13060
    Original Author
    15 years ago

    Oceanna, yes, I did. Here's the link.

    Here is a link that might be useful: Artlover's Powder Room Makeover

  • artlover13060
    Original Author
    15 years ago

    I moved those pictures to an album, tried to move them back and now I can't get the right names on them. Here they are:

    Before:
    {{!gwi}}

    {{!gwi}}

    {{!gwi}}

    {{!gwi}}

    {{!gwi}}

    After: I haven't decorated yet.

    {{!gwi}}

    {{!gwi}}

    {{!gwi}}

    {{!gwi}}

    {{!gwi}}

    {{!gwi}}

  • Vivian Kaufman
    15 years ago

    Under $30 roll is not difficult to find. There are some very nice papers available in that price range. Have a small space? Try eBay. Many times you can get high-end wallpapers in small quantities for only a little $$. I did that with a Thibault paper not too long ago (although I don't have it hung yet...LOL).

    If I were trying to stay in the under $30 camp, I'd go with traditional designs--damasks, toile, stripes...things that don't go out of style. Anaglypta and lincrusta papers are always interesting and not necessarily expensive--although hanging them can be a challenge!

    I am a HUGE fan of Bradbury papers. There's absolutely nothing more beautiful that a room full of their wallpaper. I have several friends who have used it and it's FABULOUS although pricey. They are now starting to manufacture some mid-century design papers that are way cool, too... Most notably, I love some of their new kitchen designs:

    They're just fantastic.

    I used a less expensive paper in my laundry/mud room. It's a toile and I only used it on one wall. It's much more fun that just a painted wall and adds so MUCH character to this old house (which originally had EVERY room papered).

    Wallpaper is great stuff. There's nothing like it for adding texture or interest to a room.

  • bostoned
    15 years ago

    Artlover,

    Very nicely done. Great transformation of a small bath, particularly judging from the "before" pics. Good choice of wallpaper, fixtures and even your cabinet paint.
    Well done!

    eroz

  • artlover13060
    Original Author
    15 years ago

    Thanks, eroz. I actually put new doors and panel on the existing cabinet - a cheapy DIY refacing. The old ones were so out of date, with lots of the cabinet face showing. The new doors cover almost all of the face. Technically they are oversized but they look great closed.

  • jejvtr
    15 years ago

    artlover
    YUMMY job
    Good for you!

  • bostoned
    15 years ago

    Also, I think the crown molding makes a huge difference!

  • kateskouros
    15 years ago

    i have a pretty fabulous master closet in my future. part of it will be sort of wall papered. i say "sort of" since the very fab wallcovering i would like to use is catastrophically expensive. i will use some kind of fabric on the walls instead. (amy butler has some great looking patterns). i plan to do a seating area which will house a couple of chairs (maybe in the same fabric) as well as mirrored chest ...and let's not forget the chandelier and outstanding leaner mirror. also want to throw the fabric/pattern up behind the shoe shelves. if you think it's out of style now you may feel differently after seeing my closet.
    we're doing an entire build and i'm spending just as much time on my closet as i am the kitchen!

  • bostoned
    15 years ago

    I'm eager to see the results on that closet Kate. It sounds like a knockout. Chandelier and all!

  • Bunny
    15 years ago

    In my house it is. But I'm fine with it in yours.