Simulated Wallpaper: A Damask, In Paint

ColorTherapy

One way to get the raised weave in a simulated silk damask wallpaper is to vary the finishes of your paints. File this under Flowers. The base coat is Clunch from Farrow&Ball in matte — a reliable all-purpose white...

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But the flower is Ralph Lauren Whitetail RM42, a Regent Metallic color and a favorite finish for decorative painting for just this reason: it’s quietly dazzling and otherworldly in terms of paint. The colors, as such, are close in hue and value. It’s the reflection of light that keeps it changing and keeps the eye darting for its source.

As to the pattern, I was inspired by a tear-sheet of something I hated, which is to say — I turned it into something else, mostly by removing its garish colors. I created a pattern of about 15 flowers at 22”x30”, and repeated it up and down and side to side. My individual brushstrokes and gestures are decidedly Fauvist and contemporary, but taken on the whole I think they suggest a tapestry that is slightly more elegant. I’m told people are looking constantly for wallpaper “seams.”

PAINTS USED: Farrow&Ball Clunch 2009, Ralph Lauren Whitetail RM42

- Mark Chamberlain, interior and decorative painter