For years, homeowners shuddered at the thought of wallpaper.
They stripped the faded pastel flowers and applied a fresh coat of paint, admiring the crisp, modern look.
But trends have a tendency to reappear.
Wallpaper has made a comeback in the last few years — this isn’t news.
But today, a mix of bold, bright and vintage are in vogue.
With ’50s, ’60s, and ’70s inspired wallpaper at the forefront, mid-century modern is quickly making its way into 2014. Think vibrant patterns and tone-on-tone textures.
And as usual, homeowners are putting a 21st century swing on their home decor.
No need to replicate the retro look exactly. For instance, bright orange flowers, a signature flare of mid-century modern furnishings, are optional.
Playing with other colours instead –including cobalt, aquamarine, violet and olive – can easily give you that vintage feel.
“Wallpaper is like a piece of art. It has to fit the feel of the home,” says Joan Walker, owner and principal designer of The Curtain Call Custom Interiors in South Surrey.
“If it’s for a feature wall, don’t be afraid of adding a bit of ‘wow’ in the wallpaper with bolder patterns.”
Leading this nostalgic trend are period TV series – such as Mad Men and Bomb Girls – as well as social media, Walker says. Photo-sharing website Pinterest, for instance, has thousands of ideas on how to give a house that perfect mid-century ambiance. Instead of painting one prominent wall in a room, Walker has recently seen more wallpaper being used for a dramatic effect.
If you’re looking for a more muted vibe, she suggests trying wallpaper with texture or tone-on-tone design to “easily cozy-up a space.”
Switch on vintage
Lamps of today are also getting a retro touch with clean, sleek lines and minimalistic designs. Circular drum shades, in particular, are popping up in interior decorating.
“With lighting, what goes around, comes around,” says Ron Steele, showroom manager of Ocean Pacific Lighting in Surrey.
As with wallpaper, the trend is shifting towards the quintessential mid-century modern look.
Steele says bright orange lamps, which had their heyday in the 1970s, are popular once again. For the less adventurous, an art-deco feel can be achieved with a simple drum shade adorning a candelabra, chandelier or table light.