A few weeks ago my friend Andrea mailed me to ask whether i could recommend any local wallpaper suppliers as she wanted to give the main bedroom in her just-bought apartment something of a makeover. It got me thinking to how wallpaper and alternative wallcoverings have really taken off in South Africa and how spoilt we are for choice – although a large portion of wallpapers on the market are imported, there’s an ever increasing number of locally produced options too. Scroll to the bottom of this post for a Little Black Book listing of where to buy interesting decorative wall finishes in South Africa.
The first designer who comes to mind when i think of wallpaper is Neisha Crosland. The UK-based designer is an icon in this realm and i love the subtlety of her nature-inspired patterns and her geometric designs are fab too. Locally, you can find her products at Silk & Cotton Co.
Some international decor trends sites have been loudly turning up their noses at wall stickers lately but i still love them and i especially love that they don’t require a massive commitment – it’s like playing dress up for your walls and as tastes and fashions change so you can change your stickers without the agony of choosing paint (something that i dread!) especially when you have kids as their taste changes pretty quickly…these stickers are by local artist Lecia de Waal who has a seemingly neverending supply of inspiration for walls…i’m not sure i’ll ever tire of maps and the little girl silhouettes are adorable don’t you think?
I love Inside Out Magazine and their blog is crammed with inspiration like these two walls – the first is a DIY idea – to make your own wallpaper with all those pix that haven’t quite made it into an album (and let’s be honest who hasn’t got a box of ‘i really should frame these/sort these/do something with these pix’?) – personally, although i am a clutterbug, it’s a bit busy for me but it could look amazing in a family room or in a holiday house, don’t you think? I luuurve the wood clad wall – with the plethora of lovely, raw wood products we have in South Africa i think this could look fabulous – imagine lasercutting some shapes out of a massive piece of plywood and fixing it to your wall (it’s also great for covering up walls that are damaged or if you’re renting and your landlord has issues with you painting…)
I’m obsessed with the Best in Show wallpaper of different dog breeds by Osborne & Little and i just love how they embrace jewel-like colours in so many of their designs. And the detailing...sheesh, it’s amazing. For those bedroom statement-making walls, i reckon you’ll find what you’re looking for from them.
The oldest and arguably the best wallpaper company in the UK is Cole & Son. They’ve been producing wallpapers since the late 1800’s and their collaborations with designers like Vivienne Westwood ensure they’re always in line with contemporary trends.
Lastly …this is the work of Cape Town talent Lorenzo Nassimbeni who has combined his architectural training with his artistic eye to create a series of wallpapers inspired by cityscapes and urban buildings around the world…i love his Battersea Park Power Station wallpaper ..it’s delicious!
LITTLE BLACK BOOK
You can expect to pay anything from R850 a roll for wallpaper and for a wall of approximately 10m2 you’ll need four rolls
Some good sources to try include:
Wallcoverings Inc 021 465 6547
Fabric Library 021 761 3044, 011 265 9050, 031 313 3860
Silk & Cotton Co 011 448 2578, 021 434 4225, 031303 5960
St Leger & Viney 011 444 6722, 021 462 1811
Lecia de Waal 021 790 9120
James Russell Agencies for Design Team wallpapers