Creative Ways to Use Wallpaper | Midwest Living
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Creative Ways to Use Wallpaper

Introduce pattern to your home with showy or subtle DIY wallpaper projects.

Bold base

Line the bottom of a featureless tray with decorative paper. This technique also works with cabinet drawers. Use temporary wallpaper for easy removal.

Playful prints

Large-print wallpaper injects personality into a small bedroom. Cover all four walls, or focus attention by just papering one.

Subtle surprise

Even just a bit of pattern can brighten the mood of a room. If you don't have leftover wallpaper for a small space like this cabinet, see if your local home supply store has free discontinued wallpaper books, or order small samples online.

Spotlight for less

Wallpapering just one area of a room saves time and money—and provides a focal point. Here, the fireplace steals the show with help from large-print wallpaper. 

Fancy table

Channel your inner designer and introduce colors and patterns to an ordinary coffee table with wallpaper. Cover paper with glass for added protection and to hold paper in place. When you want a new look, simply switch wallpaper. 

Pattern on platters

An assortment of bargain-priced white platters discovered at a discount store becomes lively art when adorned with boldly patterned wallpaper (any decorative papers would work). Size and cut wallpaper to fit the center flat areas of each platter, leaving a wide rim as the frame. Use spray adhesive to affix the cutouts. Group the platters, and display on the wall using wire plate hangers.

Hang it anywhere

Instead of running wallpaper across an entire wall, hang just two strips. Attach paper to plastic or wooden dowels and tie on colored ribbon. 

Kitchen color

Introduce color to the inside of kitchen cabinets with wallpaper. Choose a subtle pattern that enhances your display of china and crystal.

Frame bold colors

Wary of showy patterns? Cut out the main image of a section or two and frame it.

Cabinet revamp

Cover cabinet fronts with wallpaper for an instant refresh. 

Highlight a window

Wallpaper gives a plastic pull-down shade an arty update. Paint the window trim to complement the colors in the shade.

High drama

Make a statement with black-and-white print wallpaper. Keep accents simple, and introduce just one or two other colors.

Wallpaper chalkboard paint stencil

Use chalkboard paint to create change-your-mind wallpaper by repeating stencil shapes. We chose a regimented pattern of tropical leaves, but the only limit on the look is your imagination. Keeping the chalk above a chair rail reduces the chance of smudges. Buy stencils at crafts stores. The background color in our photo is Benjamin Moore 2147-30 Jalapeño Pepper.

Bright decor

Customize a lampshade with a piece of wallpaper. Trace sides of the shade on back of wallpaper; add ½ inch to each edge. Wrap lampshade, then fold over excess and secure to inside of the shade. You can also try wallpapering the inside of the lampshade. Keep in mind new colors will affect lighting.

Patch a wall

Create an eye-catching patchwork wall from scraps of coordinating wallpaper. 

Cover up with flair

Camouflage flawed or damaged walls with textured paper. The white and orange wallpaper is strategically placed to hide imperfections.

Bold base

Line the bottom of a featureless tray with decorative paper. This technique also works with cabinet drawers. Use temporary wallpaper for easy removal.

Easy dress-up

Put colorful patterned wallpaper on plain areas of a folding screen (the same technique works for headboards). Here, a white and green design adds instant style to the screen.

Inside details

Liven up the backs of lockers or cabinets with pretty designs. Peel-and-stick wallpaper makes this project extra easy.

Upgrade a frame

Give old frames a new look with pretty wallpaper designs. Use a sharp crafts knife to cut out the image or mirror area.

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