Much loved in the 19th cen­tury, wide-an­gle wallpapers are back – here’s how to wow with them

ELLE Decoration (UK) - - Decorating -

Panoramic wall­cov­er­ings first be­came pop­u­lar in the early 1800s, when the ide­alised scenes they rep­re­sented – jun­gles, bu­colic wood­lands, ro­man­tic sun­set har­bours – brought a touch of fan­tasy to the av­er­age home. To­day’s de­signs still have that im­mer­sive, in­dul­gent feel, de­liv­ered in a much more con­tem­po­rary way.

‘ Wide-an­gle wall­pa­per de­signs look great when paired with ar­chi­tec­tural de­tail­ing – they can be framed within bead­ing to cre­ate “wall paint­ings”, or hung seam­lessly for added drama,’ ex­plains Car­ley Bean, head of de­sign at Cole & Son. ‘Their grandeur of scale works as an an­chor to set the tone of a space.’

Non-re­peat­ing pat­terns are sur­pris­ingly ver­sa­tile. The key is to find a de­sign with the right scale for the pro­por­tions of your room: Pierre Frey’s ‘La Serre Palmier’ glasshouse scene (above, £789.60 for a panel; pier­ works best if you have high ceil­ings, for ex­am­ple, while more ab­stract pa­pers – such as Casamance’s ‘Ake­bono’, with its sub­tle for­est land­scape – suit smaller rooms.

The lat­est wall­pa­per col­lec­tions show this panoramic style be­ing re­vived in in­ter­est­ing ways. De­sign­ers Guild’s ‘In­dian Sun­flower’ looks espe­cially strik­ing hung above a painted dado rail, while Wall & Decò’s ‘Nove­cento’, de­pict­ing a con­tem­po­rary cityscape, is a so­phis­ti­cated twist on the tra­di­tional coun­try scene. Mi­lanese brand Largheve­dute’s hand-painted de­signs im­bue land­scapes with a dark ro­mance, while Sand­berg counts wa­ter­colour ef­fects and on-trend mid­night-gar­den flo­rals among its of­fer­ings.

An­other key char­ac­ter­is­tic of panoramic wallpapers is their abil­ity to cre­ate trompe l’oeil il­lu­sions. Piero For­nasetti’s ‘Nu­v­ole al Tra­monto’ cloud print, avail­able at Cole & Son now comes in an om­bré colour­way. It presents the tan­ta­lis­ing prospect of an­other world be­yond your four walls, and can even be used on the ceil­ing for a truly en­velop­ing pat­tern ex­pe­ri­ence – the per­fect way to quite lit­er­ally broaden your dec­o­rat­ing hori­zons.

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