Replacing Paint with Paper

The interior walls of a home reflect its personality, and hence it is no surprise that house-owners take pains to make them as attractive as possible. Apart from the conventional wall coverings, paint, and accesories such as wall hangings, frames and paintings, customers are now opting for something more to beautify a room — wallpaper.

The concept of wallpaper entered Nepal almost two decades ago, and it is now popular not only in hotels, corporate and commercial buildings but also in residences. Radha Pathak, senior salesperson of Prime the Furnishing
Interior at Kupondole says, “We find that many of our customers are inclined towards wallpaper as it adds design, style and luxury to any space.” She believes that homeowners have become interior savvy and try their best to create a cosy home and not just build a house. However, she also admits that only about 15 per cent of the total residence owners prefer wallpapers, as paint still seems to be the first choice when it comes to covering walls.

But the awareness about this new technique has steadily escalated. Since its establishment in 2009, Prime has been catering wallpapers to consumers who have ralised its long-term value.“Opting for wallpaper adds a sense of uniqueness and livens up any room,” says Pramod Agrawal, proprietor of Dreams the Furnishing Centre located at AT Complex, New Plaza.

According to him, the pros of wallpaper overpower those of paint as the former is long-lasting compared to the latter. Once applied, wallpaper lasts for at least a decade while paint begins to flake within a few years.This makes wallpaper a more economical option. In addition, Agrawal claims, “Wallpaper can last five times longer than paint unless one wishes to change it according to new trends.

Another advantage is that wallpaper imparts a different look and character that paint cannot give.” He further adds that wallpaper gives off a sense of warmth in winter and coolness during summer.The disadvantage of wallpaper is that it gets spoiled in case of water retention, so it should not be used in kitchens and bathrooms. In humid conditions, the glue may loosen and can cause the wallpaper to peel off. It fades off a little over the years, so it is wise to buy extra rolls of the material.

The market currently provides a wide array of designs and patterns of wallpaper like printed, plain, striped, chequered, highlighted and floral. Customers choose wallpaper as per their requirements. For example, corporate buildings opt for plain, simple and subtle wallpapers whereas residences are more inclined towards bright colours and the trend of us
ing it to highlight some part of wall is increasing.Wallpaper can be used as a border in a painted room.

According to Agrawal, types and themes of furniture, accessories and size and layout of a room also need to be considered while choosing the wallpaper. It would look bizarre if the wallpaper contradicted the overall theme and look of the room. “Most commercial buildings and hotels hire professionals who have ideas and requirements of their own, while those customers who want to decorate residences depend on us ,” he explains.

It is wise to use red, violet, golden and mixed patterns in a bedroom, which will make it classy and romantic.

For living rooms, clients opt for floral and striped patterns and choose to highlight a certain wall or portion. An attractive option is to use darker colours for three walls and focus on one wall or portion by using bright colours. According to Agrawal, one of the reasons for the growing interest in wallpapers is the growing influence of the housing concept as well as Indian soap operas.

Wallpapers are pasted to the walls by skilled professionals from showrooms or by clients themselves. They can be cleaned with a gentle rub. Wallpaper can be easily removed if it is wiped with water, as this soaks the paper and saturates the glue, allowing it to be easily peeled off.

The price of wallpaper depends on the quality and thickness of the material.

The prices range from Rs 1,050 to Rs 1,550 per roll.

Wallpapers that are currently available in the market are imported from India, Belgium, and China.
Do it yourself: ·
> Before starting, ensure that you have enough wallpaper ·
> Measure the walls and calculate the exact amount of required rolls ·
> Dab the wallpaper with glue and paste it carefully on the wall ·
> Rub it with a large sponge or brush to smoothen it and avoid bubbles ·
> Use a putty knife to trim the ends ·
> Use a seam roller to make sure the paper edges are firmly attached

source: The Himalayan Times(2011),"Replacing paint with Paper",The Himalayan Times, 9 April 2011

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