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Special Effects with Wallpaper

Wallpaper not only adds color to a room but it can also create added interest and solve decorating dilemmas. Wallpaper can manipulate spaces, add or eliminate architectural detail, even be applied on objects besides walls! Here are some of our favorite tips, tricks and special wallpaper applications. (Watch this space, we come up with new ideas all the time!)

  • A proven method to decorate any room is to build the decor around wallpaper. Chose the wallpaper you like and borrow colors for the rest of the room; the background color could be used for woodwork, a medium range color for carpeting, unique accent colors for throw and pillows. A mix of colors can be incorporated into drapes and upholstery, following the pattern mix guideline earlier in this section.
  • Pick a pattern and play it off solid coordinating colors for sure-fire decorating success. This formula works particularly well in traditional homes.
  • Look at the whole picture when planning. If you are wallpapering a room that flows into another, make sure that the wallpapers in each room flow together. Borders can also help coordinate adjoining rooms.
  • Personalize small spaces with wallpaper. Border a mirror or window to give it visual importance. Extra wallpaper can be used to cover lampshades, pots, wood furniture, screens - the only limit is your imagination!
  • Raise a low ceiling. Vertical stripes with an upward thrust will make ceiling look higher. For an even more open look, keep the ceiling light-colored.
  • Lower a high ceiling. Dark colored wallpaper can make a room with a high ceiling feel more comfortable. A wide border around the top edge of the wall with horizontal striped wallpaper also is effective.
  • Make a small room bigger. To stretch the look of your living space use small and open patterns in light colors.
  • Make a small room look even bigger! Match the wallpaper and the fabric coordinate all over the room with one solid color anchor. For instance, wallpaper a bedroom and pick curtains and bedspreads identical to the wallpaper while adding a solid color rug. There is no such thing as too much of a good thing.
  • Make a large room more intimate. Rich, dark and large patterned papers will bring large rooms down to size.
  • Hide a bumpy wall. All over patterns, extroverted textures and matte wallpaper can minimize bumpy walls and architectural oddities.
  • Liven up a boring wall or room. Add architectural interest with wallpapers that look like wood or marble borders, mural wallpaper or add several patterns on one wall.
  • Remember the baby. Little ones are big on color and pattern. Wallpaper the room with a neutral pattern and add a "baby" border. When the child grows, change the border to correlate with their age and interests.
  • Add zest to a bookshelf. Wallpaper the inside of bookshelves in mini prints to show off collections.
  • Be an artist - the easy way. Trompe l'oeil wallpaper can create stunning patterns like creating "paintings", headboards, picture frames, flowered trellis. It's almost like it's really there!
  • Create paneling. Who said paneling had to be made of wood? Wallpapers and contrasting borders can create the most decorative wall panels and add architectural interest to flat walls.
  • Cover your furniture. Toy chests, cabinets, dressers, tables all get a lift from wallpaper.

Your only limit is your imagination (and your local wallcoverings retailer or designer can help you with that!).

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