Creating a Happy, Colorful, Handmade Home & life on the shores of lake superior

February 26, 2013

Small Scale Renovations: Let's Start with Wallpaper

If you follow me on Pinterest, you might have been alarmed by all the miniature things that have been filling my "DIY to Try" board.  I haven't lost my mind and won't force you on to the Spruce Moose.  You remember how much fun Hubby & I had making the play kitchen for my cousins.  Now we have an even tinier project in the works: we're making a dollhouse!  I already found some fabulous 1960s dollhouse furniture that I'll be revamping and and I'm on the hunt for some more pieces, either to rework or make from scratch.

Here's my inspiration:

Mouse House
Young House Love

I am going to selfishly turn this dollhouse into my dream home before handing it over to a wee one in our family.  What will my dream dollhouse look like?  Well, lots of white walls (of course!) but I'm going to inject interesting colour and pattern in the form of wallpaper, something I secretly lust after.  That's why when the folks at Total Wall Covering approached me about writing a post exploring beautiful wallpaper designs and trends, I jumped at the chance to think more about what kind of patterns and textures I want the dollhouse to have.  Whether you're planning a small scale renovation like me, or looking to add a little zest to your full-size space, enjoy a little patterned eye candy, including some inventive uses for wallpaper.

I'm planning to pick some vintage-inspired patterns for the dollhouse, to go with my retro furniture finds.  I love a fresh interpretation of vintage aesthetics. 

Contemporary Sidewall from Total Wall Covering
Via Handmade Charlotte
Children's Sidewall from Total Wall Covering
Via Timothy Sue
Archway Wallpaper from Total Wall Covering
This has to be one of my favorite designs!  I love the simplicity and the colour pairing.
Sidewall from Total Wall Covering
Some of the patterns that have caught my eye are pretty bold, but I'm emboldened by how great Nicole's dollhouse turned out with such brave wallpaper choices.

Making it Lovely
Avian from Total Wall Covering
Although I'm excited to pick bold patterns, I may toss in a few more neutral patterns, in softer colours.  I'd like some of the furniture and accessories to shine too.  Patterns like the ones below will be a perfect backdrop to say, a mint green fridge or bright aqua table!

Via Houzz
Silhouette Ashford House from Total Wall Covering
Via Houzz
Tuxedo Wallpaper from Total Wall Covering
Via Decor Pad
Lollipop Leaves from Total Wall Coverings
Miniprints from Total Wall Covering
 Polka dots will be a must, am I right?

Polka Dot from Total Wall Covering
I'll have to remember to keep my project kid-friendly, with patterns that are quirky enough for little design enthusiasts to like too.

Via Jeannie Jeannie
Robot Wallpaper from Total Wall Coverings
House to Home
Tron Wallpaper from Total Wall Covering
Instead of just putting wallpaper on the walls, I think I'll experiment with other applications, using wallpaper to cover stair risers, shelves and more.

Wallpapered Stair Liners, Lonny
Wallpaper Lined Drawers, Made by Girl
Wallpapered Shelved, Martha Stewart
Framed Out Wallpaper, Via Apartment Therapy
Using wallpaper as a headboard, either affixed directly to the wall or a piece of plywood, is a fabulous idea, big or small.  I found a great pattern for making a wee little bed, but if that project doesn't succeed, I might make try a dollhouse version like one of these fabulously inventive headboards.

Wallpaper Headboard, Better Homes and Gardens
Floral Sidewall from Total Wall Coverings
Wallpaper Headboard, Better Homes and Gardens
Contemporary Wallpaper from Total Wall Covering
If you're jealous of my impending mini wallpaper projects, try a small scale project of your own, like this sweet tray.

This post was sponsored by Total Wall Covering, but the theme, content, design, words, and decision to highlight wallpaper products are all my own.  I was simply approached with the idea to chat about wallpaper, and knew this would be the perfect chance to share inspiration for my impending mini-renovation.  I'm not sure about you, but I have been left with a serious urge to wallpaper something.


  1. Lollipop Leaves looks like our logo. (How's that for alliteration?)I think it would be fun to have that on a couple of the walls in my walk-in closet/laundry room.

    1. You're right! It does! That would be perfect for your walk-in closet (swoon!) or laundry room.

  2. How sweet! A petite maison!!! I LOVE wallpaper. Those Orla Kiely ones are ADORABLE. We had a little boy almost two years ago, but if it WOULD have been a girl.. there was going to be a wallpaper wall.

    I'm thinking about wallpaper for my new house (hoping hubby wants to start getting into that soon.. meanwhile I'll dream.. we say by 2018.. time flies!). But very subtle. I like a lot of the softer colors and patterns. If only there were neices in my family.. only nephews so far!

    1. How about some robot wallpaper for your little guy??? I actually love the black and white silhouettes, which are pretty neutral.

      You know what's funny, on the subject of toys, my little boy cousin loves the play kitchen we made more than my little girl cousin. Maybe I need to break the mold and make a super fun dollhouse for GI Joe dolls. Idea here . . .

  3. Now I'm definitely inspired to wallpaper something but seeing as I'm renting I can't quite do the walls so maybe I'll line the back of a bookshelf?

    1. That's a great idea! You could also apply wallpaper to a large surface like plywood, frame it up and hang it (if you're allowed to hang things). Then you'd have a little slice of wallpaper :)

  4. Oh my this is such a great post.
    I love that you are redoing a dollhouse for a relative.
    what fun!!

    I can totally see why you were inspired to use a pop of color in wallpaper.
    I just used a bit in my studio redo(lined the backing of bookshelves) and love what it does to the space.
    I do have to say some of these pics gave me googly eye if I looked at too long.
    Small amounts are best, LOL
    Have fun


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