Creating an English cottage feel with wallpaper is one of the easiest ways to add character to a space. The large-scale pattern and classic colorway of this wallpaper evokes a vintage vibe that’s still fresh and classic.
After months of looking at wallpaper online, ordering samples, hanging one wallpaper and removing it right away, ordering more samples, and laboring over six classic, happy wallpaper choices, we finally found the perfect wallpaper for Noelle’s room. It’s just the right amount of vintage and lends an English cottage feel to this space. We didn’t even know we were going for that until we saw this Meadowsweet paper by Morris & Co. It was the first and only wallpaper Noelle and I both LOVED, and we are thrilled with how it turned out.
In order to create an English cottage feel with wallpaper in Noelle’s room, here’s what we did…
- Roman wallpaper paste
- Roman wallpaper smoother
- Paint tray
- Small paint roller
- Paint brush
- Utility blades (lots and lots of utility blades)
Measured and Cut the First Run
Once I measured out the first length, I then laid it out on Noelle’s bed and lined up the second piece according to the pattern match and cut that piece. This helped me work faster and avoid having to hold the whole roll of wallpaper up to the wall to figure out where the pattern match was for each run.
Dry matching the paper first worked well for me avoid wasted paper and work more efficiently.
Pasted the Back of the Wallpaper
Typically, I would roll the paste on the back of the paper, but my roller was a bit defective, plus I was working on top of a towel on top of Noelle’s bed, so I ended up using a brush. I took this opportunity to teach Hannah how to hang wallpaper (an essential skill in my opinion…ha!), and I snapped a few photos of her working. These are her hands brushing the paste onto the back of the paper, being sure to paste the edges well.
I prefer to use more paste than less. You can always smooth out extra paste, but adding more onto the wall once the paper is up is more work and a bit awkward.
Booked the Wallpaper
I’ve always wanted to do this because I’ve only ever worked with paste-the-wall paper. These were fairly short lengths of wallpaper, making this the perfect project for me to try this method out. I simply folded the paper over backwards so the paste could soak in. I let each length sit booked for about two to five minutes.
Hung It Up
I’ve hung wallpaper too many times to count, including in the girls’ vintage elegance bathroom, our his and hers home office, and Hannah’s bedroom ceiling, so I let Hannah handle some of it this time. She did great. I helped her line up the pattern and explained what a butt joint was…where two lengths of paper butt up against each other. You never want to overlap a wallpaper joint. Hannah got a kick out of the name of this joint but ultimately understood the idea.
Note: To fully avoid seams showing, you can paint your wall the same color as the background of your paper.
Smoothed It Out
This is possibly the most satisfying part of hanging paper. Hannah loved using a smoothing tool to flatten out the paper and really adhere it to the wall.
Trimmed the Wallpaper
I used the straight edge of the smoothing tool to make sure I cut a clean line along the top edge. For the bottom edge, I simply creased the paper and then ran a brand new blade along the crease. You need a brand spankin’ new blade for every single length. Trust me. This will also help you when trimming around doors, outlets, and windows.
For doors, I simply creased the paper vertically and ran my blade down the crease. Just be sure to crease it really well, and use the straight edge of the smoothing tool if possible.
If you’re unsure, cut a little bigger than where the crease line is, then go back and do a more exact trimming.
Touched Up and Cleaned Up
Once the last piece was trimmed, I was done. I did make a few mistakes, but I’ve done this enough that I know how to touch up with paint and extra little scraps of paper. Plus, when you stand back, those mistakes don’t even show.
Creating an English cottage feel with wallpaper in Noelle’s room was really just a matter of finding the right wallpaper. We could have gone in a completely different direction with the pattern and colors, especially given the colors that are in her incredible, one-of-a-kind vintage rug, but an English cottage vibe was always meant to be…even if we didn’t know it until we created it.
So, what do you think? Is this the cutest little girl’s bedroom ever? I would have loved to have a space like this growing up, and it is my distinct joy to give such a sweet room to my Noelle. I can’t wait to paint her desk, make the bed crown, finish her window seat cushion, and wrap this project up!
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