Tuesday, 25 May 2010

365 Patterns: Wallpaper

So, wallpaper.

The perfect way for me to adorn my home with patterns. Or so you'd think.

But, despite being an out-and-out pattern-lover I have only one [+ a tiny bit] walls covered in patterned wallpaper in the entire house. I think it's mainly due to liking so many designs that having to decide upon a single one to feature in a prominent place in my house is almost too much to ask! Also, my near-daily ogling and handling of 12x12 scrapbooking papers pretty much fulfils the desire for a frequent pattern fix.

Which is why I fully understood and completely fell in love with Lisa Whiteing's ingenious use of sheets of Studio Calico paper .... on her toilet wall:

Yes the paper is yellow and yes, I have it too so I'm bound to love it. But really, much respect to Lisa for putting into reality what most of us patterned-paper freaks have only ever drooled over at the thought of casually contemplated doing. Check out this post on Lisa's 'Inky Fingers' blog for the full toilet paper story...[you know what I mean!].

So, which is the singular lucky design made it on to the one patterned wall of the house then? It's this one; row 2, column 3, a simple grey and silver disc design at the top of the stairs:

365Patterns: Wallpaper Archeology

[For further details click on the image]

Most of the other photos above are fragments of wallpapers which we found beneath the paper we stripped when we redecorated. Then, bottom left, there's the strip of 70s graphic design which James found in his first venture into the loft. It may only be a sheet of paper, but in my eyes, he'd found hidden retro treasure!

The top left design is a 1950s wallpaper in the V&A musuem which, now I've seen it inproximity to my landing wallpaper, comes as no surprise that I liked it enough to photograph it! I most certainly have a penchant for circular designs ... but I guess that can wait for its own dedicated 'circle pattern week' post.

Until then ... when we visited Belsay Hall this month I was somewhat taken with how, while much of the original house has been gutted, there remains wallpaper on some of the walls, so a few photos were in order:

131/365 - Vintage wallpaper in Belsay Hall

130/365 - Vintage wallpaper in Belsay Hall

Lovely aren't they? I especially like the little house which someone has drawn on the one above in pencil [on top of the cream flower in the middle]. Belsay Hall was lived in from 1817 to the 1960s so I wonder how long that rather sweet graffiti has been there!

Finally, while I've been surrounding myself and filling my 365 Patterns Flickr set with wallpaper, I remembered I still had a few wallpaper samples from Gauche Alchemy tucked away:

132/365 Wallpaper samples

They're so lovely, the faux bamboo in particular, I've been keeping them for 'something special' like a mini-book cover ... but I'm not sure which, what or when .... yet.

Even before this post I've had my eye on one of the dining room walls as a good place to maybe start adding in a few additional patterns to the house - I'll let you know what / if I decide!

Ok then, onto the musical interlude with which I generally accompany the pattern onslaught. But, let me tell you, finding a song to compliment this post which wasn't from Pink Floyd's 'The Wall' wasn't easy. In fact, it wasn't actually possible.

The only song I could actually think of which mentions a wall in the lyrics - without Googling for others - was Vampire Weekend's 'Oxford Comma'. A song I completely love but, as its 4th word is a 'big swear' I opted not to play it for you right now. So, if you're offended by that kind of thing I suggest that you don't click here and you don't accept a lift in my car [that album lives in my CD changer....sorry].

Instead, for now, sit back and enjoy another Summery little ditty form Vampire Weekend which, as it's called Mansard Roof is almost, kid of, sort of, related to today's wall theme .... nearly... well, you couldn't have roof if there were no walls .... anyway ... enjoy:

Thanks for staring at my walls.

Now feel free to share photos of your own pattern bedecked ones to tempt/confuse me further.

See you soon.



  1. You've got me thinking now. Songs with walls in them? Mmm..I might be back..

  2. We've no patterned wallpaper in our house, just loads of scary 90's vivid purples & burnt oranges. I'm slowly replacing them all with calming magnolia, which I guess is a bit weird cos I too am a pattern freak in all other areas.

    *Love* Vampire Weekend. My fave track is Walcott & although I don't play, I've very nearly taught myself that end piano riff.

  3. I love looking through the wallpaper books whenever I visit John Lewis but I still haven't found anything as amazing(ingly disgusting) as the upside down floral that adorned my living room walls when I moved into my little home. Um. Lovely.

  4. Gorgeous mosaic, and I adore the Studio Calico wall, too - you know I want to C+P it!

    I've been half-heartedly searching for the perfect roll to go on our chimney breast ever since we moved in. I want something faintly bonkers but that Steve won't gag over. Hmmm...

    (I'm also desperate to afford a few rolls of Orla Keily for the kitchen, but that's a whole other story. Sigh...)



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