Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Zoffany Wallpaper


Ever since I saw a post on Willow Decor about adding patina to your walls, I've wanted to strip the paint off the curved base moldings on my steps, I hope they look like just this.  I'd also be happy to have this Zoffany wallpaper.  The pattern is called Gustavus which I found curious because I associate the laurel wreath pattern with Napoleon and neoclassical design.  But, it turns out, Gustav spent a great deal of time in France so Gustavian design is highly inspired by the french neoclassical movement.  Who knew?  I guess that's what you learn in design school. 

But I've also become infatuated with this wallpaper called Medevi.  When I did the facelift in my master bedroom, I chose a gray and white damask wallpaper which I love to this day. It's completely vinyl and was about $8 a roll which was my budget after just buying the house.  When I renovate the master bathroom, I also plan to gut the master bedroom so I can insulate all of the walls and above the ceiling and I'd love to upgrade to something nicer like this. 

I think many of these Zoffany wallpapers are perfect for an old house.   Can't you almost see Thomas Jefferson sitting on one of these chairs putting on his boots....or his wig.

Or Martha Washington soaking in this tub knowing that the British would soon be coming.

Zoffany wallpaper is apparently only to the trade but I did find it on Wallpaper Direct out of the UK.  Just don't buy it all up, okay?  I'm saving my pennies.

But I think the room would look more like this.

I'd probably pair it up with some great chests from Lone Ranger Antiques like these.  I guess I should be saving nickels.

Here are few other interesting wallpapers.  This one is called Facade.

This one is called Rome.  I think these really busy patterns are best used in small spaces where there's just a little bit of it.  I think a powder room that had cream or gray wainscotting on the bottom half would be a perfect place to use it.

This one is called Pillar.  It appears like the column bases and capitals come in different pieces which makes sense.  The fluted part of the column is then cut to fit your wall.  I think it would be fun to cut the columns out and just put them, say, flanking a doorway. 

Zoffany also has some great fabrics.  This is an ocelot print in cut velvet.  It would go great with your Mary McDonald leopard drapes, right?

It seems like wallpaper is making a huge comeback.  What are your thoughts on it?

Love it?

Hate it?

Would try it but you don't know how to hang it?

Love it but you don't want to take it down in a few years when you're tired of it?


  1. I used to hate wallpaper, but I think that may have to do with having to remove it...layers and layers in one of the first houses we bought back in the 80's. Now I love it, but would be afraid to see it as a DIY's so expensive and i imagine there's little room for errors, like when painting.

    I love your selections, especially Medevi.

  2. The last one. I can't make a commitment like that, although I do really, really love the first and second wallpaper you showed.

    And I would love to see the paint stripped off of the stair molding. Goodness, that's gorgeous. I'm all about wood these days.

    Putting on his wig...that's a good one. I need to get back to Monticello. I'm pretty sure I'd view it through all new eyes. And how fun would it be to tour Monticello with a fellow design enthusiast? I bet you could spend hours and hours.

  3. All of the above. I love wallpaper but I just don't want it in my house anymore. Just one room left! If Stephen saw that pillar wallpaper that would be the end of me.

  4. I remember my parents wallpapering everywhere in the 70's. The striped hall paper was the best and we always found it such a rewarding surface to draw on. When we bought this place in the early 0's we pulled out the bedroom walls and replastered rather than try to remove the paper which seemed to have been attached with Bondcrete! I love seeing funky pictures of it in others' houses but fear there are too many wallpaper demons to overcome! Instead I have mounted some nice Porters wallpapers on canvases for the kids' rooms. That'll do.

    Annie 2

  5. Yes, it's beautiful! I love wallpaper and if I had the time and extra money, I'd go crazy!

    I love what you've done with wallpaper in your house - I say keep going!


  6. LOL! I'm laughing because both my sister and my best friend bought homes a couple of years ago and both are STILL trying to get all the old wallpaper off of almost every room in their homes!
    Personally, I love the photos HERE but I change my mind too much to commit to it. I would LOVE to have one bedroom done in something soft and dreamy but right now I'm painting them both white... I love white (including my moldings).
    :D - Cindi

  7. Have you seen the wall papers at the Emerson House in Concord and the Longfellow's house in Cambridge?
    Emerson's my favorite.

  8. Love it love it love it. Yes, I love wallpaper. The downside is the cost, but as I work with it everyday I can tell you that there is a huge difference in the quality and therefore the look of an expensive wallpaper on the wall. If you are going to take the plunge, I tell clients to buy the best you can afford. I guarantee you will love it more and for longer. I learned this the hard way. Without wanting to over splurge, I put an inexpensive ( ok really cheap) paper in my dining room 2 years ago. Still don't love it, and ended up hating it after I hung a gorgeous quality paper in my front hall. I say to clients who are thinking about it -- look at and feel the expensive stuff so you can compare and that paint is far more gorgeous than cheap paper. Don't mean to sound like a snob, I just believe that quality matters when it comes to getting a look you want to live with.

  9. When I was growing up, my mom changed the wallpaper in our home at least 3 times. I am talking every room. When I first moved into my home, I wallpapered my kitchen and living room. The sad thing is that I grew tired of the pattern rather quickly. I also had a nightmare of a time removing it. While I love the look, I tell myself I won't be using it any time soon. But I have learned to never say never. How wild is it that its coming back in a big way?

  10. I love it! There I have confessed. My suggestion is to pick a pattern that is not a floral but something timeless. I love Zoffany papers and especially the ones you showed.

  11. I am loving it again too! I love your first example, from the color to the pattern, I don't think it would get tired.

  12. Personally, I don't think a house is a home without wallpaper, it add so much warmth, texture and tells so much about the owner.

    I don't think it ever went away, at least not in the UK - there was that awful minimalist vogue a few years back but that was really for those who favour modernism.

    I really like the Zoffany, the colours are very Gustavian too - Gustavian influenced decor is one of my favourite styles.

  13. I have always loved wallpaper especially for bedrooms, makes the room feel cosy. I love the blue wallpaper you have chosen, think of it as an investment because I couldn't see anyone tiring of that :) x

  14. I love when I visit and you have a new post. And I LOVE the medevi paper! Your list of projects is amazing. I'll be tracking your progress all along the way.

  15. I'm starting to love it again to, however, I only like wallpaper with painted trimwork. As you know,I live in a sea of oak woodwork so I'm not putting it up in this house. Although I was thinking about putting it just in the window bench area.
    I say go for it...your guest room looks fabulous dressed in wallpaper.

  16. I am a wallpaper lover. And your choices are sublime. Of course.

    Is your weather as beautiful as ours this week?

    I wish this was my house so I could have all my blogger friends out for some fun and your pie.

    xo Jane

  17. The "Facade" paper is nice but I can't think where I would use it in my house. I like wallpaper when someone else deals with it--putting it up and taking it down.

  18. Wallpaper was never something that I was a fan of but after seeing the ones in this post, I have changed my mind. The pattern in the second one is my favorite! Thanks for the great post!!

    'Please visit our new website'

  19. Wallpaper looks very nice in photos but never seems so in real life. Perhaps I have never been around properly hung paper. I like subtle painted faux finishes or murals.

    The Zoffany wallpaper is lovely and I can picture it in your home.

  20. I'm not much on the use of wallpaper. I had a bad experience with 60 feet of magnolia border and a pair of sissors!
    But, the Gustavus pattern would be grand in your house. I like Facade, but it seems to hard edge for your place and don't you dare use something like Rome. It's my favorite city, but that's not my favorite wallpaper. And, don't you dare use Pillar! I'm totally stealing that pattern. I'll get over my wallpaper issues for that!

  21. I like wallpaper very much, especially in a bedroom, (where I've got William Morris) but often find it really difficult to find what it is that I have in mind. I looked for a couple of years for a vibrant deep emerald green paper for the dining room. The papers were dull in tone and I had to give in and use paint. Same problem in the sitting room looking for a clear yellow - painted it pale duck egg blue in the end! Another problem is that the best papers seem to have become horribly expensive.

  22. Looks like I am late to the game. I love the laurel leaf pattern, a favorite of mine. Of course Gustav was influenced by the French - he stole everything from them and for good reason. I love all your selections - I would die for a character home to make them all the more delicious. Your house will be splendid...

    I have stopped decor dreaming for a while as our attic needs some repairs which may cost $10,000. Unreal. We have people in to look this week - moisture issues and insulation problems - may require the whole half roof to be removed. What a crummy day but pretty over here....

    xo Terri

  23. I do like wallpaper even though I don't have a room in my house with it on the walls. I have always wanted to do my dining room in natural grass cloth.

  24. i love it, larry hates it. i wonder why? i love the first paper best. and i think it would look pretty fabo in your bedroom. or in my guest bedroom. whichever.

  25. This is log cabin woman, I'm still at it. I have not killed the contractor, yet but I did hire 3 more guys to jump start this project. Then I took another look at the picture I'm using as a model and I read the copy and found that those suckers used steel, you heard me STEEL. Yes sir, they put up a steel frame and cover it with logs hollowed out to fit so it looks like a log cabin! I called up a structural engineer, he said steel will be the only thing that will allow me to cantileve the log ridge pole over the last 15 feet of the cabin so I can have unobstructed views through the 12' x 24' butt glazed glass that will be the end wall in the gable of the cabin. Life is not easy.

    Like your wall papers. Do you think it would be too much to wall paper my logs? Probably, forget that I said that, I'm getting a little slap happy.


  26. Adore the newer wallpaper designs, and some of the past that have returned to favor.

    Zoffany I adore, and I have to say I swoon over the Laurel Wreath pattern. My favorite.

    Art by Karena

  27. beautiful choices! i love the chests - they are from Chelsea Editions. you might try to find a designer who can order them for you on a cost plus basis. it would be cheaper!!!

    thanks for your sweet comment today! i loved it. Pam's talent is huge I think. she just can buy or see the most wonderful things that others miss. she's fabulous and so is her daughter Shannon Bowers. Google her!


  28. Love your ideas. Yes, wall paper is making a come back. I love wall paper, but I hate taking it down!

  29. I love wall paper too - the price, not so much. The patterns that have the worn patina are gorgeous and would look perfect in an older home.

  30. I've posted my papers on Miss Cellany, for you to take a look at, Steve.

  31. S...great post. I love Zoffany too. I agree that the best use for busy papers are small rooms. I like a petite powder room with busy paper from floor to (and on) the ceiling. I've been doing a lot of wallpaper recently (especially with young people)....go figure...have a nice week...k

  32. I love wallpaper. It can add a lot to a room. I also really like your blog. I just signed up to follow. Hope you are having a great day!

  33. These are lovely! The wallpapers are definitely making a statement. Enjoy the beautiful day, Kellie xx

  34. I love wallpaper, especially large tone on tone prints. It adds such depth to a space. Love that Zoffany wp. You should go for it!

  35. Beautiful papers.. The Zoffany laurel wreath is classic.
    I love these patterns in a hallway or stairwell where you need an all-over print to give scale to the space. Those problem spots where you're wondering if you should hang pictures? There's nothing like a damask with a 27" repeat to deal with that issue!
    I'm also now convinced that I need a spiral vegetable cutter before summer is out! Thanks for nice ideas on lots of fronts. (I was turned onto your blog by the lovely Carol Beck, with whom I traded recipes and design ideas in her previous life...)