Creating Unique Details With
Decorating With Wallpaper
By Jaima Brown
(ARA) - True decorating distinction lies in
details -- little finishing touches and unusual twists that make a room entirely
unique. To put your personal mark of creativity in your home, do what many
professional interior designers do: Head for the border.
Wallpaper borders are among the most
versatile of decorating tools. Furthermore, they are affordable and easy to
install. Nearly any wall takes on a more finished look with the addition of a
border. But to achieve real distinction, think beyond merely adding a border
along the top of the wall. For new ideas, look up and look down.
Consider, for example, placing a decorative
border on the ceiling itself, connecting that often-ignored overhead expanse to
the walls. Decorators often refer to the ceiling as "the fifth wall," another
palette on which to apply their art. By surrounding a room, at the ceiling, with
a continuous, unobstructed border, you create a "tray" effect that visually
holds the room together.
Nowhere is this technique more useful than
in the kitchen. Kitchens typically contain permanent appliances and cabinets
that separate wall space. By installing this elegant leopard print border above
the crown molding, the overall space has been unified while also giving the room
greater depth and height.
The border also provides a visual transition
between the kitchen and the living room beyond it. Both the leopard border and
the banana leaf wallpaper are from the Winnetka collection from S. A. Maxwell
Co. Like all Maxwell collections, Winnetka is arranged in groups according to
color. This assures easy coordination among patterns within the same room and
from one room to another. All design groups in collections by S.A. Maxwell
contain several borders in different widths.
Double-bordering more than doubles your
creativity. By combining two borders from the Winnetka collection, we created a
truly custom border in the living room. The four-inch leopard border, placed
along the outside perimeter of the ceiling, is the "anchor." Banana leaves on
the die-cut border repeat the theme of the wallpaper pattern, while their
sculptured, outlined edges reach into the room.
Die-cut borders provide sculptured-edge
detailing that was once only achieved by tedious hand-trimming around a pattern.
To install a double custom border, combine the two patterns on a table,
positioning them exactly the way you want them to overlap and join. Measure
their combined width. Beginning at the point where the ceiling meets the wall,
make a light pencil mark on the ceiling to show how far your custom double
border will extend onto the ceiling. Install the straight border first, then
overlap it with the sculptured design. This idea works equally well along the
bottom of walls, at chair rail height, or wherever else you want to surprise the
eye with something special.
Double borders don't have to be joined
together to give a room a lift. In a guest room, we ran two different,
sculptured ivy patterns parallel to each other, 20 inches apart. Both are from
S.A. Maxwell's Wicker Park collection. The large basket and ivy border runs just
beneath the crown molding at the ceiling, and the diminutive die-cut ivy border
"underlines" it 20 inches below. Even more layering is possible. You might add a
vertical stripe wallpaper between the two borders and even place the
coordinating ivy trail wallpaper from the same collection under all these
Now you're on a roll. So why not use your
border leftovers to decorate a hat box or a group of shoe boxes and make the
inside of your guest room closet as appealing -- and unique -- as the room
For more border ideas, locate a retailer
near you that carries coordinated wallpaper and border collections from S.A.
Maxwell Co. by calling (847) 932-3700 or visiting www.samaxwell.com.
Courtesy of ARA Content