Monday, December 20, 2010

Wallpaper Offers Consumers More Bang for Their Buck

MOSAIC Group Guest Blogger: Diane Capuano, executive editor, Paint & Decorating Retailer Magazine

In this uncertain economic times when consumers are searching for ways to make their decorating dollars go farther, wallpaper stands out as an effective and affordable way to add pattern and color to any room d├ęcor.
Consumers can certainly use wallpaper on all four walls. However, an ongoing trend is to feature wallpaper on a single wall to create a dramatic focal point for the room.

“With fewer expendable dollars, homeowners are finding ways to spruce up and make their homes more inviting with wallpaper by covering one feature wall or the ceiling for a major statement that completely updates the room,” said Suzanne Ashley, director of marketing and product development, Seabrook Wallcoverings.

Malcolm Cooper, creative director for Blue Mountain Wallcoverings, concurred that the feature wall is a great way to ensure that the consumer gets more bang for their buck. “Because only one wall is involved, the consumer can step up to a stylish higher price point—one with all the ‘bells and whistles.’ In many cases, this feature wall becomes the backdrop or artwork for the space.”

One of the most dramatic ways to create a feature wall is to use a wallpaper mural, with designs ranging from panoramic nature shots to a depiction of the New York skyline. This instantly creates a powerful focal point for the room, according to Gina Shaw, vice president—new product development for York Wallcoverings. “It’s great for people who want to create a lifestyle or environment in a den, office, dining room or kids’ room.”

The versatility of wallpaper also encompasses a great range of design themes, ranging from traditional to contemporary. “Style-wise, we are developing wallpapers with design motifs to include Jacobeans, damasks, scrolls, medallions and leaves, which have roots in traditional design but with a twist for today’s market,” stated Paula Berberian, creative services manager at Brewster Home Fashions.

Ashley also identified a trend toward more luxury and “bling.” As she reported, “Wallcoverings are moving toward a more understated sparkle. This includes softer, more subtle metallic treatments, the continued use of glass beads and the strategic placement of crystals to accent printed designs.”