Thursday, June 23, 2011

Loving Graphic Wall Treatments

So, you may have noticed that stencils are kind of a trend.  Probably because wallpaper is "back in a big way" but not super affordable.  (I'm not quoting anyone directly there, by the way, it just feels like I've heard or read that phrase a gazillion times in the past year.)

I have two big walls that offer up molto opportunities for some creative stenciling--the laundry room upstairs and the back wall of the office--and I'm just now discovering a trend in the designs I'm drawn to.  Okay, sort of two trends.

It kind of all started with this image, seen in a sneak peek on design sponge and ohdeedoh (which came first?  Who can say).

[here and here]

I love the effect of the overall triangle pattern, which the homeowner drew and painted by hand.  And I found myself having the urge to do something similar with a hexagon shape, like the bigger, more colorful cousin of the backsplash we added to our kitchen.  Kind of like a painted version of this.

I love the more limited color palette in this one, and the way it is so hand made yet almost feels digital in the color gradients.  I also like that the pattern does not go all the way to the edges.  Cool, right?

This next one uses simple squares, but ramps up the interest by using gradient colors.

So pretty.  This is from Dwell Studio, and I am remembering a similar wall treatment in a loft that, I believe, belongs to Christiane Lemieux, though I could be wrong.  I can picture the living space perfectly--maybe it was in Elle Decor?  Anyone?  (But I digress.)  Also, I wish I could be okay with this bed being nowhere near centered on the wall treatment, but I'm not.  Call me rigid.  I won't argue.

Anyway.  Then I saw this one on Apartment Therapy last week, in a house tour.

Which feels really hand made, and also does the work of a wallpaper while celebrating its stencil-ness by stopping short of the edges of the wall.  Here's a detail.

And then today on Apartment Therapy I saw this fabric stencil project, which similarly shows its hand.  I would love this on a wall.

And just to throw something vintage in there, because you know I love to look on back to the good old days, I found this.

This treatment is made from wood, which is awesome, but I can also see painting a tone on tone pattern to create a similar optical illusion.  I love the geometry of this, but the overall effect is kind of quiet.  Which might be a good thing.

Or, how about doing the opposite, and going kind of loud?

Did you ever play that drawing game where you create a shape, draw a point in the corner of the paper, then draw lines from every corner of your shape to the point, to create a 3-d object?  No?  It's fun.  This painting kind of reminds me of that.

So it appears that I need to tackle the office and/or the laundry room with a large-scale, overall graphic pattern that feels hand-made, whether hand painted, stenciled, or block-printed, and that it should perhaps use gradient or tone on tone color.  Sound good?

So that narrows it down.  Guess I'll get designing!

Oh, but there was that other trend emerging in my inspiration files.  Come on back tomorrow and I'll round it up.


  1. Wow. I love them all - especially the first triangle one (looks like a quilt!) and the yellow linear one from Apartment Therapy. But you mentioned in your "ta da" post that you usually didn't embark on projects that take so long! These look like they would take forever! But what a payoff. Go for it! As usual, I will enjoy following your work in progress . . .

  2. I'm loving triangles and prisms right now, they bring an edgy feel and a lot of energy.. would love to see a wall of hexagons - hope you do one! i'mnot sure I have the patience for the structure of these, I'd end up with some swirls of color breaking free :)

  3. Heather, it looks like you are referring to this article with Lemieux's loft space. (I can't resist a citing challenge). It's from Domino. I like the gradiant color schemes best. My eyes can't handle a hundred disparate spots of color.

  4. Yeah, I forgot the link:


Let me know what you think. I love hearing from you!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...