So this is by no means intended to a be a wallpaper styles of 2014 (and no relation to Harry Styles hair from One Direction either!) or a trend setting blog on what is hip and fashionable in the interior design world it goes. We won’t pretend to be “in the know”, we just appreciate design, and well, after looking at collections over the last six to nine months, you tend to notice a theme or common thread occurring across collections.
This year we see a lot of reference to mineral and natural stones and the distinct use of the square/tiled geometric form on designer wallpaper. This is not to say we have not seen these type of designs before. The trend for gold and metallic wallpapers is of course more popular and has been growing since 2007 and companies such as Zoffany, Thibaut and Brian Yates and other manufacturers have been responding to this and taking advantage of modern print techniques by introducing metallic highlights into their collections over recent years, and now even adding the effect to square tiled papers.
This year Romo fabrics released, under their Zinc Textile brand, their striking Marbellous wall covering (above), and while it is much more focused on displaying the natural but dramatic contours of the marble rather than reference any form of square/tiled design, it was a bold launch of some digitally printed large-scale wall coverings designed at recreating a polished marble look.
So that got us thinking are they, or were they onto a trend here, and if so where they the first….
Well it is of course nothing new in taking natural materials such as stone or marble and reproducing onto wall coverings as looking for examples we can cite, that great design company, Osborne and Little and their Oratorio wallpaper now featured in their Wallpaper Album 6 along with Quartz, Travertino, and Scaglia all referencing natural forms.
Others good examples to consider could be Zoffany and their Akita vinyl collection launched in 2012, which displayed a textured wallpaper, Polished Concrete, based on natural shades of marble and quartz which had a slight rough feel too it. While their Lustre Tile design from the Zoffany Quartz collection in 2012, a wallpaper printed on metallic foil, to give that tiled crackled glaze to the surface. I am sure there are numerous other examples referencing mason and marble, and that polished look but these are the ones we know, and come to mind quickly.
There were other companies pre-2014 also referencing both natural materials, and square designs with a strong representation from the French brands Elitis, Nobilis and Casamance.
If you take the time to explore the range of Nobilis papers and you may come across the following Marbré Gris PLA217 from their best of collection, with Epongé Ficelle PLA212, and the dark tiled look of Damier Gris GST916, you get the feel they have taken strong influences from the texture of marble and stones.
Casamance, while also having interesting marble/stone designs have a number of designs like Ghali, and Carre that really emphasise that tiled effect, while pushing the envelope a little further with layering designs such as paisley or damasks underneath the tile tile/square form.
With Elitis you were completely spoilt for choice for the tiled effect, and not only that, but also with vast array of textured wallpaper, that includes the unusual textures, of speckled cow skin on Veracruz, colt skin on the Movida wallpaper, and Loup wallpaper made of Wolf skins.
As mentioned previously with trends focusing on metallic, and gold wallpaper, take a look at Elitis Hope from the Mille millions collection which is available in a silver, gold, copper and metallic wallpaper with that repeating square pattern. Contemporary and on point.
Then reconsider the Zoffany Quartz Tile and Harlequin Lenoardia wallpaper from 2012, and 2013 respectively. All clearly on the right edge of the design curve back then.
So the influence of natural materials and textures, metallic and gold highlights, and square tiled geometric designer wallpaper was clearly around pre 2014 but who has taken it further and continued the theme in 2014?
Well Casamance with its Caractere and Place Vendome have certainly taken inspiration from natural stone, and form, with these designs released at the beginning of the year.
The Expression wallpaper, also by Casamance, has an abstract design with square tiled effect, and which we here, can’t help drawing parallels with Zimmer + Rhode’s (of course much more diverse) Shades Of Lacquer.
As we can clearly see Zimmer and Rhode explore this tiled and textured look, with different textural design combinations across the paper design Shades of Lacquer, while Palisade, another paper from their Reflection collection suggests layers of mineral rock with its technique of metallic print across its surface. If you like the look and feel of the Palisade design, from Zimmer and Rohde, then be sure to look at the collections of Éclat and Robinson from Elitis also.
With Zoffany and Harlequin already staying on pulse with design trends, not a surprise then to see Zoffany’s associate brand Harlequin fabrics launch the Anthology 01 and Anthology 02 collections earlier this year, full of textured wallpaper aiming to raise Harlequin in the realms of the luxury wallpaper market, and with two duly noted rigid square designs seen on their marble and block papers below.
Designers Guild launched a block print into their collection with Saru appearing in the Surabaya paper collection this year,
While Khorma, a Belgian company, distributed by Brian Yates launch their Square Collection and in particular SQU404 Osaka Brass (Square) a bold gold wallpaper. Of course be sure to consider many of Brian Yates collections as they have been producing textured wallpapers for many years and recent collections like Travertine only strengthen their selections.
Andrew Martin has just produced another stone tile effect called Camelot in traditional sand and limestone colours, from the Museum collection, while still not forgetting his other tiled wallpapers of Galuchat, Colonial, and Biography from previous collections.
Just like a couple of years ago we saw that cracked glass, mosaic kind of look become apparent in the interior design world and featured on both fabrics and wallpapers, which was then followed around a year later with the obsession for hide/reptilian skins and prints we consider this square/tiled look has definitely progressed over the six to nine months or so.
Is it at its peak? Who knows perhaps better off asking a professional, I mean if you look at trends in detail more and more people are looking for gold , and metallic wallpaper than tiled or square wallpaper. What you are seeing across many of these luxury wallpaper brands though is by adding these gold or metallic highlights, and even textures, using different techniques, they are bringing often boring tiled geometric, and other designs back into life for 2014.