Wallpaper!! I love wallpaper – always have. My mum, Pearl, was a self-taught genius at paperhanging, and as a child I used to gaze in awe as she manhandled huge, pasted-up sheets without so much as a tear or even a crumple. I have yet to try my hand at the art, but when the time comes I will attempt it with optimism and industrial strength wallpaper paste, hoping that some of her skills have been passed down the line to me.
This may not of course be the case. Mum was a tightrope walker and juggler in Bertram Mills Circus before she settled down and had four little Peasgoods, and I have inherited none of her bravery on a high wire or indeed any of her juggling ability (unless you count juggling my diary to squeeze in everything I want to do).
But I digress…I have witnessed some wonderful wallpaper examples recently – most notably in hotels, and especially in their loos. In fact, I have been so struck by a couple that I’ve spent ages photographing them from different angles, leaving whoever is waiting for me outside assuming I have a problem with my bladder.
I think the collage-like effect of these latest wallpapers is what makes them so attractive to me. Years ago I loved a Laura Ashley blue stripey paper so much that when they discontinued it I painted a room white and created my own fat blue stripes, and I have a lovely roller that creates a lacy stencil in long bands of colour too.
I have also used ‘Tema E Variazioni’ (not stripes, but the amazing ‘faces’ paper – see pic below) at our Crafty Beggars HQ in Brighton. It’s one of the most famous designs by iconic Italian designer Piero Fornasetti, but it’s no longer produced and therefore now considered a rare collector’s item. (Note to self: buy more than one roll in future.)
My husband, Patrick, finds the Fornasetti a tiny bit busy, but it’s nothing compared to a ditzy-print flower paper from Cath Kidston that hangs in our spare bedroom. Normally I love 99% of everything Cath Kidston sells – I am a huge fan of her style (take a look below at her fab circus paper, which Mum would have liked) but the spare room one is so busy I start reaching for the Anadin. It was very difficult to tell from the tiny sample what the overall effect would be like, but I have learnt my lesson as no guest ever wants to stay more than one night in there.
I am now on a mission to reproduce my own jaw-dropping wallcovering. It obviously won’t be on a roll, more likely panels that I design myself for our small loo at home. But I am so inspired by the samples I’ve posted here and my long-term passion for paper, that now I have the brush between my teeth. Watch this wall…
P.S. If you have any fantastic wallpapers (or wallcoverings of a different kind) to share – or have even created your own, please send pics of them to us at www.craftybeggars.tv and we’ll be delighted to post them up for you!