When choosing a wall covering, it is essential to consider the color involved, the condition of the walls and the function of the room.
Walls must be in harmony with the overall decorating theme. Walls should complement the furniture and accessories in a room.
Walls can become a focal point in a decorative scheme, camouflage awkward features, and visually change the size and shape of a room.
The most commonly used wall coverings are: paint, wallpaper, paneling, mirrors, brick, stone, fabric and carpeting.
Neutral colors are more often used than vivid colors because they provide a background to the rest of the room and furnishings.
Washable wall surfaces are recommended for bathrooms, kitchens, children’s rooms and hallways because walls in these areas tend to become soiled more quickly than bedrooms or living rooms.
Prepared paint has been on the U.S. market since 1867. Paint is sold in two forms: Alkyd and Latex. Both types are sold in ready mixed colors and special order colors.
Alkyd paint Alkyd paint is durable, washable and often used in kitchens and bathrooms. It requires a primer or base coat and a solvent to clean up.
Latex paint Latex is easily applied over bare wallboard without a primer. Cleanup is easy with soap and water. These paints dry fast and have minimal odor.
Paint is available in gloss, semi-gloss, eggshell, flat, textured and glazes. eggshell gloss
Paint applications are varied and can change or add drama or peace to a room.
Sponging Paint is applied with a sponge over a base coat, giving a mottled or blotchy texture.
Spattering Paint on a brush is flipped onto the base coat, giving a speckled appearance.
Strippling Similar to sponging, but a more delicate effect is achieved by using a strippling brush to apply a colored paint lightly over the base color.
Ragging One or more colors are applied over the base coat, and then partly removed by blotting or rolling with a rag to achieve a marbleized effect.
Color washing A coat of thinned paint or glaze is lightly applied over a base coat of another color.
Glazing Layers of one or more transparent colors are applied on top of a base coat. The result gives the illusion of various depths on the wall.
Faux finishes French word meaning false. Faux finishes simulate the look of another materials, such as a stone or wood, by using various techniques to apply paints to a surface. More popular finishes are marble, granite, and wood grain looks.
How much paint do I need? • To estimate the amount of paint you need in order to cover the walls of a room: • 1. add together the length of all the walls • 2. then multiply the number by the height of the room from floor to ceiling. • The number you get is the room's square footage.
Now you have to determine how much of that square footage is paintable surface area. Because you use a different paint on the doors and windows, subtract those areas from the room total. • No sweat, just subtract 20 square feet for each door and 15 square feet for each average-sized window in the room.
You end up with a number that is close to the actual wall area you have to cover with paint. In general, you can expect 1 gallon of paint to cover about 350 square feet.
Now the math! Divide the paintable wall area by 350. This will indicate the number of gallons of paint you will need. Always round up to the nearest whole number to assure yourself you have enough paint!
Remember batch numbers are important with paint too! • There are on-line paint calculators available to make this an easier process!
Wallpaper Wallpaper has been used to cover walls since the 16th century in Europe and since colonial times in America. Ancient Chinese used rice paper as early as 200 B.C.
The use of wallpaper can change the apparent dimensions of a room. A bold, bright wallpaper pattern can make a room appear smaller and a scenic pattern can make a room seem more spacious.
Before purchasing wallpaper, you should bring home a large sample to try for color and pattern. Wallpaper can be washable, scrubbable and strippable.
Vinyl-faced wallpaper is backed with fabric or heavy paper, it is durable, stain resistant, waterproof and popular.
Embossed wallpaper has texture rolled into the paper during the manufacturing process. Raised surface areas as a part of the design, can be used to create a formal effect.
Grass Cloth Is made of loosely woven plant fibers that are backed with paper.
Borders Narrow strips of decorative wallpaper used around doors, windows, and areas where walls and ceilings meet or on wall in various heights parallel to the floor. Borders can be used alone or with other wall coverings.
Murals Murals are complete scenes that do not have a repeat. Some murals may require nine or ten panels to complete the scene murals are usually placed on only one wall in a room.
Pre-pasted wallpaper is easy to “hang.” It must be soaked briefly in water before hanging.
Strippable wallpaper is easily strippable, which means that it can be removed from the wall easily. Other papers must be removed by steaming and scraping.
Reusable wallpaper • Affordable, reusable, self adhesive, wall decals
When purchasing wallpaper, match the batch numbers on all of the rolls purchased to insure colors match.
Wood Paneling gives a warm attractive appearance to a room. It requires little maintenance. It comes in a variety of forms and prices.
Solid wood is attractive but expensive. Manufactured paneling is a thin layer of fine wood bonded to less expensive wood.
Plastic laminate is layers of paper and resins baked and printed to resemble wood grain. This is glued to a plywood backing.
Molding Molding is strips of wood or resin used for trim or ornamentation in a room. The main purpose is to finish of a window, door, wall or to prevent damage to the wall.
Plate/Picture rail is a wide molding hung 6 feet off the ground used for display purposes.
Chair Rail is hung 3 feet from the floor to prevent the backs of chairs from damaging walls or for decoration.
Baseboard/kickboards hide the break between the wall and floor.