PANORAMIC PAT TERN
Much loved in the 19th century, wide-angle wallpapers are back – here’s how to wow with them
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; pierrefrey.com) 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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