Posted on December 18 2017
Wallpaper comes in different materials, each one offering its own benefits and disadvantages. The specific wallpaper material perfect for you depends on your design parameters. Is it a residential (homeowner) or a commercial space? How large is the room? What will it be used for? How much traffic will the space experience? In this article, we highlight three different wallpaper materials: grasscloth, flock, and glass bead.
Perhaps the most popular and easily recognized wallpaper material on this list, grasscloth wallpaper are those that use natural materials – arrowroot, jute, mica, and cork are just some examples. Because of this, this category can also be referred to as “natural wallpaper.” With its handcrafted look, these eco-friendly wallpapers add a relaxing, organic look to the space. Another stylistic benefit is the textured look. The raised surface adds depth to the walls and the tactile element of grasscloth wallpaper makes it stand out from other wallpaper materials. However, its materials are relatively more fragile given its natural elements, which also makes it harder to clean. Using it in a dryer environment or where there are no spills or messes is important. Examples include a bedroom or a reception area of a building.
If the setting for your next design project is suitable for grasscloth, why should you consider using it in the space? First, as mentioned above, grasscloth wallpapers offer a highly textured look. The surface often features threads lining the wallpaper backing, mica chips in a packed in a dense layer, wooden strips, and more. Grasscloth wallpapers don’t just engage a visitor’s visual attention with color and design, but with a tactile appearance that makes it stand out from regular vinyl or non-woven wallpaper patterns.
While most grasscloth wallpapers have a traditional, classic look that adds a sense of nature to the space, other grasscloth styles are the total opposite. Cork wallpaper in particular have a more upscale, contemporary aesthetic that is a perfect fit for places like fashion retailers, restaurants, and modern homes.
Next on our list is flock wallpaper, a special category of wallpaper that uses a felt or velvet-like material. While not as visually tactile or “rough” as grasscloth, it still adds a sense of depth to the walls and emphasizes a softer touch. Instead of adding a natural or organic touch to the space like grasscloth, flock wallpaper is all about sophistication, elegance, and modernity. It truly has a high-end look. Flock wallpaper generally performs best in low to medium traffic areas and dry environments.
Inspired by a vintage aesthetic, Luminous is a flock wallpaper that features a bold geometric design that has a playful, creative touch. The gold colored ovals are nicely situated on a circular black shape, creating a contrast between symmetry and asymmetry. The overall color palette is minimalist, focusing on black and gold to create a dramatic look that oozes charm and sophistication.
With another vintage look, Linea is perfect for projects focusing on a retro or art deco-inspired design. The contrasting sections of straight versus curvy lines add a dynamic energy to this wallpaper, making it seem to move along the walls. The simplistic yet stylish linear design is minimalist, but the flock materials add a tactile and visual texture that give the wallpaper an added dimension.
GLASS BEAD WALLPAPER
Last but definitely not least, glass bead wallpapers are another type of materials that add a shimmering look to the walls. Because the glass beads are carefully threaded onto the wallpaper in a specific pattern, this is definitely a wallpaper material that is more fragile than your typical vinyl product and can be harder to clean. However, glass bead wallpapers make up for this setback by providing a stunning appearance. With a subtle reflective surface, glass beads shine in the light to create a glamorous aesthetic that is sure to be a crowd pleaser.
Damask wallpaper patterns are among the most popular styles thanks to its intricate details and historic look. With this wallpaper, the damask motifs are crafted using thousands upon thousands of small glass beads. What we love best about this Helpfulness wallpaper pattern is the sheet amount of detailing on the pattern. Floral and leaf imagery are interwoven into the damask pattern, celebrating nature and organic shapes. The neutral colors also add to its versatility, making it easier to incorporate into your design project.
Abstract wallpapers are exciting to use because it can easily blend into any décor style. The last wallpaper we’d like to highlight in this article is Rhodia, a glass bead wallpaper that features a geometric-like design that’s almost like a grid. Varying from thick to thin, the uneven lines invoke a sense of rustic appeal that makes it at home in modern residential or commercial spaces.
Designer Wallpaper that Pushed the Boundaries
Designer wallpapers were highlighted in one of our earlier articles, The Most Influential Wallpaper Designers. For this last category, we’d like to highlight a designer we think made the biggest splash in 2017. That designer is none other than Nina Hancock. With three strong wallpaper collections, she has shown that her designs are not only timeless, but are very much steeped in contemporary culture and tastes.
DIFFERENT WALLPAPER MATERIALS FOR DIFFERENT APPLICATIONS
While grasscloth, flock, and glass bead wallpapers don’t generally have the same amount of resilience and easy-to-clean attributes as more generic wallpaper materials, these three groups do offer other benefits. They are elegant choices that are unique and creates spaces that develop their own character.