Tips for Making Bold Wallpaper Less Scary

Tips for Making Bold Wallpaper Less Scary

Sarah Rae Smith
Oct 13, 2010

Wallpaper, although trendy with it's recent surge of fabulous prints and designs, can still be a little scary. The idea of spending a hundred bucks on one wall and then hating it is enough to make any stomach churn. So how do you tell if you'll like that crazy bright flower print all over your living room? Here's a few pointers!

Unsure about the latest wallpaper trends? Scared that you'll spend all the time and money and end up ripping it off the walls in a few days? Here's how to get past it:

• Live With It: All new changes to your home can feel a little shocking. Three months is the amount of time we say to live with a design choice before you ditch it. The first month you spend your whole time rearranging and picking up accent pieces to try to make it work. The next month you sit around and stare at the walls and by the third month, you've really had a chance to live with your work and decide if it's the right fit for your space.

• Sample, Sample, Sample: Most wallpaper sources will let you order samples before you buy. Even if you have to buy an entire single roll, it's better than buying 6 rolls and then finding out you hate it or the color is off just enough to be wrong. You can always resell a single roll on Craigslist or eBay or use it to line your dresser drawers if it comes to that, just make sure you have enough to make an educated decision. One little 8"x10" square isn't going to cut it.

• Add a Complement: So you just bought green and white wallpaper. It's on your wall and you're still on the fence about things. Resist the temptation to pick up coordinating colors like the same green and white and instead, try a color that would complement it nicely, like a pretty yellow, teal or orange. Even if it takes your room in a new direction, it can be a fun one!

• Lighting & Reflections: It has been said time and time again here on Apartment Therapy, but the easiest way to change the mood and entire look of a room is with lighting. Mirrors can go a long way to helping them out, but for the most part, the lighting you choose (even if it needs to be changed up) will make a big difference. Add a few uplights to show off your new wall, try some spot lighting on the artwork you hung on it. Try warming things up or cooling them down with your choice of lightbulbs even! It will make all the difference in the world.

Have you had a wallpaper experience that ended poorly? How did you learn to live with it? Let us know below!

Image: Living Etc.

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