Decorate from the walls in for a beautiful room.


Are you unsure how to begin your decorating project? One way is to decorate from the walls in. Start with one theme for the room-romantic or retro, country or cartoony, Victorian, sports, or maybe treehouse. Pick a color- it could be a favorite clothing color, or a color taken from a special picture, or a color you feel especially drawn to. It takes little effort to find coordinating wallpaper and borders in your chosen color or colors. Add bedding, something on the windows, and a few accessories and you have nicely turned-out room.

Along the same wallpaper-y lines, have you seen those vinyl wallpaper cutouts called Wallies? They are easy to apply and remove, don't mark up the walls, are inexpensive, and come in lots of styles and sizes. You really should check them out.

If you crave something a bit more unusual (and pretty dummy-proof as far as installation goes), try covering your walls with PaperIllusion. This wallpaper, which comes in many colors, is applied in irregularly torn pieces, overlapping one chunk over the others until the wall is covered. No patterns to match, no straight seams to worry about, and a wonderful mottled effect when you're done. I've seen this give walls a leathery-suede look which is quite beautiful. It comes in colors and certainly is worth a look.

If you have a yen for something unique, beautiful, easy to apply - and recycled! then don't miss this page on molded wall tiles.
Do you suffer from chemical sensitivities that make fresh paint a problem? Clay plaster is a non-toxic product that may provide the answer.

Did you notice I haven't mentioned paint? I didn't want to scare you with the idea of coloring your walls. So many people limit themselves to shades of white, beige and maybe very pastel tints, not necessarily because they like the colors (?!?) but because they fear stronger hues. A neutral room certainly can be striking with the right accessories and textures to provide interest, but honestly- are you going for plain vanilla walls as a special look or are you just afraid of making a mistake with color? Go ahead and yield to your yen for eggplant walls, or at least one focal wall. If the color turns out a tad too eggplanty, sponge one or more coats of a lighter shade or a glaze over the wall and see how that looks. You may decide to save the plain vanilla for ice cream.

Walls can also be covered in fabric, and not just wall-to-wall draperies, which can get expensive. Upholstered walls are an option when the walls are rough, irregular or simply ugly. This is not the cheapest choice, what with batting tacked to the wall, fabric stretched over the batting and stapled, and the staples covered with some sort of trim stapled or hot-glued on. It can be, however, something to consider if your room is basically good and just needs something to give it oomph.

Speaking of fabric on walls, did you know you can use fabric like wallpaper, using liquid starch instead of glue? Lightweight fabrics work best and if you choose a solid color, you won't have to worry about matching patterns. Buy the fabric at a discount and buy extra for curtains. You'll have a great look that is entirely removable if you change your mind a year later. Just wash the starch out of the fabric and save it for the next project.

And there's more. Wallpaper borders and murals, chair rails and other architectural moldings, combinations of treatments (wallpaper and paint, fabric and paint with a chair rail between) and items which aren't normally found on walls. Here I'm thinking of a use for all those gazillions of computer CDs that come in the mail. Can you imagine a wall covered entirely, floor to ceiling, with those round reflective circles? Not for everyone, sure, but for the right person, zowie!

I hope this has given you some ideas for wall treatments and, more than that, an urge to get busy and decorate.

If you want some specifics on different wall treatments, be sure to
take a look at these pages:

Cheap Paint? | Clay Plaster Walls | Color or No Color? | Color Tips | Fabric & Starch For Walls | Molded Wall Tiles | Molding and Other Trims | How to Buy a Paint Brush | Ragging Paint | Stencilling |Templates | Wallies

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