While putting paint or wallpaper onto walls is commonplace, it is becoming more and more popular to add fabric to walls in an attempt to add not only interesting colours and designs but also texture and depth.
In the past, it was common to use tapestries or luxurious fabrics to cover walls. It was a way of adding artwork to the walls while adding warmth and colour to the room. Nowadays all sorts of fabrics are used on walls to achieve the same results.
The most popular choices are fabrics that are hard-wearing and are less likely to show dirt or marks. Leather is one of the more expensive options but can add a sumptuous but masculine look to any room. Due to the fact it can be wiped clean, this type of wall covering is very practical.
Hessian or raffia both add a very natural look to the room. Thick and strong, these fabrics are perfect for any home and will match well with furnishings. Best of all the fabric can also be used in other parts of the home such as the curtains or cushions to tie the look together.
Silk is also a very popular option for walls. Those with a never-ending budget may choose to buy hand-painted silk which will add the sort of design element you will achieve from good wallpaper but will be soft and smooth to the touch.
If you are wanting a quick and cheap option then you can purchase cheaper lightweight fabrics that will do the job. The results will be more like wallpaper as the texture will not be the same, but you will be able to apply these fabrics yourself.
Applying fabric to the walls is not as simple as putting up wallpaper, but because of the stunning effect, it is worthwhile. The following tips apply to the lightweight fabric.
- You can use a starch solution to attach the fabric to the walls. Use a roller to apply the starch and then hang the fabric directly onto the wall.
- The fabric may slip before it is dry, so using tacks in the corners will keep it steady. Use a smoothing tool to get out the wrinkles. Overlap each strip of fabric; matching the pattern.
- Roll more starch over the fabric and allow it to dry.
- Use a box cutter to trim the excess fabric.
- When you want to remove the fabric, simply wetting it should be enough to allow it to be pulled away from the wall.
Heavier fabrics may need to be applied by an expert. The main reason for this is that they cannot be starched over as it will ruin the material and they will require a strong fixing method. To finish off the edges these fabrics often require decorative edging to hide fixings. This is usually a strip of fabric that has been sewn. It gives the effect of the wall covering having been sewn to the wall.
Some walls can also be padded to give a softer and even more textural appearance. If this has been done, the walls can be studded for a designer look which you usually only see in the best hotels.