Friday, September 13, 2013

"I often think that the night is more alive and more richly colored than the day."

Recently I find myself drawn to flowers on backgrounds that look like an inky black sky. It's a very 80s look, and one I associate with my childhood. I like to joke that my sisters and I spent our childhoods playing in wallpaper stores instead of playgrounds--but it's true. My mother's interior design obsession didn't become a business until after I finished high school. But she spent our childhood years honing her skills at home.

Black wallpaper and old family photos 
Consequently, my sisters and I spent hours quietly sitting in the corner at the wallpaper shop. I loved poring over big, heavy books of Waverly and Schumacher samples. Florid cabbage rose patterns on black backgrounds were always my favorite designs. The contrast enhanced the flowers' delicate shapes, and the dark colors kept the flowers from looking too sweet or childish. It was pretty, but mysterious and a little ominous. Even at ten, I was already a little bit goth.

Peony no. 3240 Original Signed Fine Art Photograph by Kariherer on Etsy
Now I'm taking a second look at the style I liked when I was a kid, and it's still got a hold on me. It can be edgy and dramatic with a mirrored side table and lacquered furniture, or granny chic with lace curtains and a handmade quilt on the bed. With clean white woodwork and furniture, I think the look would be quite crisp and very pretty. One thing's for sure, though: It's not a look that's good for resale. And I can't wait to get out of this sardine can teeny tiny condo and into a real house with a yard for the dogs! For now, I'm going to dream of walls that look like a dark, secret garden... and consider contenting myself with one of these prints from Etsy.

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