- Beauty & Style
- Contact Us
Like Us, Follow Us
Your lifestyle, your quirk
Love the look of wallpaper but not the commitment, work, mess, and expense? Maybe you’re renting and you don’t have the landlord’s permission to glue paper all over your wall, but you want a little pizzazz in your bland space. Maybe you saw a cool paint effect but haven’t had much luck with taping off graphic designs. There’s a simple, sticky solution. Contact paper or colored tape can give you the looks you want and are easily removable.
Contact paper is for so much more than your grandmother’s shelves! Now you can use it in place of wallpaper to cover an entire wall or to create design elements. Contact paper is designed to be removed and replaced every few years from shelves, so removing it is not as difficult as wallpaper (though you may need some Goo Gone to get some of the residue off). From the comments on Honey & Fitz’s post about contact paper, it seems that contact paper can last on walls, but it can also start to peel on textured surfaces. To ensure that your paper stays put, use some Mod Podge on the edges to give it some extra staying power. Mod Podge is water soluble, so removal won’t be a problem. If you’re applying contact paper over an entire wall like wallpaper, be sure to remove air bubbles as you go with a squeegee or credit card.
One of the nice things about plain contact paper is that it is inexpensive and readily available (some of the wallpaper-worthy patterns can be pricey – up to $20 per roll – and only available online). You can use plain black or white contact paper (or a pattern if you’re bold) to add some graphic stripes, polka dots, or chevrons to your walls. Plan your design in advance and measure your pieces carefully before cutting the pieces out of contact paper and applying them to your wall. To make perfect circles for polka dots, trace a glass or other circular object. Using a tape measure and a pencil, mark where you want to place each of your pieces of contact paper. You may want to use a level for horizontal stripes or chevrons just so that you don’t feel that your house is slanting every time you look at it.
Have a geometric design that you’d love on a wall? To create it without wallpaper, use masking or washi tape. Washi tape originated in Japan and is similar to masking tape. It is made out of paper and comes in a wide variety of colors and patterns. You can find it in the perfect color for your room’s décor, then attach it to a wall to create a design. Rachel from Pencil Shavings Studio created some elegant frame-like designs in her home office using 30mm washi tape; Jenny Komenda of Little Green Notebook created a diamond-patterned wallpaper effect using a smaller half-inch variety of washi tape. You could also create thin chevrons or geometric shapes. Plan your design ahead of time: Rachel sketched out her possible options before choosing her favorite and coming up with exact measurements, while Komenda tried out different sizes of diamonds before finding one that was the proper scale for her entryway. To create the diamond pattern, space diagonal strips of tape evenly in one direction, then do the same diagonally in the opposite direction. Use an Exacto knife to trim excess tape and leave clean edges. To create squares, you may want to use a level to make sure your lines aren’t on an angle.
Now fear of commitment and your landlord’s rules don’t have to stop you from having patterned walls. Tape has so many more décor possibilities than simply holding up posters of teen idols and contact paper is useful outside of your kitchen cabinets. Get to creating a stylish but temporary wall today!