Wallpaper is back and better than ever - here’s how to make it work in 2020

  • 14/08/2020
  • Sponsored by - Resene
Resene Lounge Wallpaper Collection 384504
Resene Lounge Wallpaper Collection 384504 Photo credit: Resene

If you’ve scrolled any interior blogs recently, you’ll have noticed that wallpaper is back in a big way. From oversized florals to tropical-print murals and graphic stripes, dramatic wall coverings are trending.

But this time around, instead of papering every wall, it’s all about mixing and matching, highlighting key details with wallpaper, and combining paint and wallpaper to tell a cohesive story.

This is great news for those worried about being too bold with their wallpaper choices - a feature wall can bring in pattern or texture in a way that is not overpowering.

Although bold is beautiful too - wall-to-wall statements are making waves overseas, with paint used on joinery, ceilings and in other rooms to tone down the effect.

Resene Farmhouse Living Wallpaper Collection FH37505
Resene Farmhouse Living Wallpaper Collection FH37505 Photo credit: Resene

Make a statement

"Over the last few years wallpaper has become a huge trend again," says Resene Colour Consultant Sarah Gregory, who works with homeowners and building owners in the Nelson region. "It enables you to create an atmosphere laying pattern and colour when used as a statement wall in any room of the home."

Sarah says popular places to incorporate a statement wall include lounges, dining areas, bedrooms, entranceways and guest toilets. An interesting wallpaper can transform a toilet into a powder room and conversation piece, she adds.

"Adding a feature wallpaper is the easiest way to change the look of any room. The finished result will bring a new dimension to your space."

"The best place for a feature wallpaper is the focal point of your space, so for instance, in a lounge, if you have a fireplace or wall-hung TV you would use this wall for a textured or patterned wallpaper. For a mural, a large wall in a dining room or entrance is perfect. In a bedroom, we generally use the wall behind the headboard for wallpaper."

Resene 1838 Wall Murals Collection 1905-123-02 Bellavista Azure
Resene 1838 Wall Murals Collection 1905-123-02 Bellavista Azure Photo credit: Resene

But how do you ensure the finish is professional when combining Resene wallpaper and Resene paint?

Sarah explains: "Paint the other walls before hanging the wallpaper and paint just around the corner of the wall so that when you hang the wallpaper the paint finish joins seamlessly."

Winning combinations

If you want to jump on board the maximalist trend, check out the Resene Glasshouse Wallpaper Collection, which includes beautiful nature prints and so many tropical and floral motifs you’ll think you’ve died and gone to botany heaven.

"The pretty botanicals on Resene Glasshouse Wallpaper Collection GLA701 would look beautiful teamed with a soft pink paint such as Resene Gelato, soft blue grey like Resene Casper or the deeper blue grey of Resene Neutral Bay," says Sarah.

For a graphic look, Sarah recommends the Resene Black and White Wallpaper Collection, which has a number of striking monochrome designs such as stripes, florals and checks.

"These make a fabulous contrast to a strong wall colour on other walls of the room or a white theme. I love to add a deep colour so that the paint and wallpaper are a statement in the space."

She suggests combining Resene Black and White Wallpaper Collection 530704, which features a quirky duck print, with the camel-brown coloured paint Resene Twine.

Also popular is the industrial look. Try out a New York-loft feel in your home with a brick print, or opt for wood, concrete or stone patterns as seen in the Resene Factory III Wallpaper Collection. There are also photographic murals which will lend a vintage cityscape effect to a room. The beautiful glass-roofed building depicted in Resene Factory III Wallpaper Collection 940923 can be offset with a soft grey paint on the other walls, such as Resene Quill Grey, suggests Sarah.

Resene Modern Art Wallpaper Collection -433227-610673-489828 ROOM
Resene Modern Art Wallpaper Collection -433227-610673-489828 ROOM Photo credit: Resene

Paint without priming

Another way to combine paint and wallpaper is to use paintable wallpaper such as the Resene Paintable or Resene Anaglypta Wallpaper Collections. Both of these collections include textured wallpapers ideal for walls with holes, cracks, lumps or other poor finishes. The thick paper and interesting designs will hide any defects.

"Textured wallpaper is a good option if your walls aren’t up to a paint finish," says Sarah.

There are a range of textures, including floral, striped and antique-look patterns. You don’t need to spend hours sanding and priming, just apply wallpaper, then paint over it in your favourite Resene colour.

"Any waterborne paint can be used to paint paintable wallpaper, we generally recommend using Resene SpaceCote Low Sheen."

Resene Lounge Wallpaper Collection 386503
Resene Lounge Wallpaper Collection 386503 Photo credit: Resene

Resene offers an extensive selection of wallpapers. Check out the latest collections here and visit your nearest ColorShop for personalised wallpaper advice.

This article is created for Resene.