Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Much Ado About Wallpaper

I've spent the last month obsessing over this wallpaper from Sanderson's new Voyages of Discovery collection. I'm going to pepper this post with other designs from the collection so you can ogle them, too. But this pattern is by far my favorite. Doesn't it look like it came out of a Wes Anderson movie? I spent more than a month trying to get my hands on it, and it just arrived. Woo-hoo! But before I could get it, I had to deal with the most laughably incompetent salesperson ever. She was so bad, I think she was trolling me.

Be still my heart. Picture Gallery by Sanderson, as seen at Jane Clayton
Here's the thing: Sanderson is an English company, and if you don't live in the U.K., it's not easy to examine their wallpaper in person before ordering. You'd think that in the era of Internet and overnight shipping, it would be easy to order a sample, right? But I couldn't find a single online retailer who would ship the wallpaper to me for a reasonable price. Undaunted, I walked into a local shop, Wallpaper & Designer Home in 100 Oaks, and asked the saleswoman if she would start carrying Sanderson so I could order a sample through her.

Galapagos by Sanderson, as seen at Fashion Interiors
She enthusiastically agreed. As far as I was concerned, she grew a halo and angel wings in that moment. Wallpaper Lady told me she would call me once she set up an account with Sanderson. I waited for a few days, and I didn't hear from her. I called the store a few times, left messages, and never received a call back.

Christabel by Sanderson, as seen at Jane Clayton
So I visited the store again. Wallpaper Lady laughed: "Ha ha ha, I lost your number! But now I have an account with Sanderson." I was annoyed, but I placed an order for a wallpaper sample. It was supposed to be sent directly to my house. A few weeks later, my mom showed up at my house with the sample. Um, what? Mom told me, "Wallpaper Lady mistakenly had the sample sent to the store, AND she accidentally threw away your phone number again." Seriously?! Mom was at the shop on a different errand, and she randomly asked about my sample. Wallpaper Lady was beginning to lose her halo and angel wings.

I loved the wallpaper even more when I saw it in person, so I measured the wall and dropped by the store that day to place an order. Wallpaper Lady couldn't calculate how many rolls I needed, so she asked me to wait until she could have the store's owner calculate it. She said he would call me. Okay. A week later, I hadn't received that call, so I dropped by the store. She said, "Oh! You haven't gotten a call? Let me check on that and call you tomorrow." Wallpaper Lady was beginning to grow horns and a tail.

The next afternoon, she actually called me back and said I would need three rolls of paper, and each roll would cost $100. That was weird, because based on my math, I thought I needed either one or two rolls. Here's where it got crazy, though. She called back 10 minutes later and dropped a bomb: "I accidentally gave you the price that WE pay to Sanderson for the wallpaper. YOU have to pay us $198 per roll. I can give you our special 30% discount we normally reserve for designers, but that's the best I can do." OMGWTF. At this point, Wallpaper Lady grew fangs and was no longer recognizable as human.

Picture Gallery by Sanderson in Aqua, as seen at Decor Supplies
I'm a little crazy and obsessed when it comes to decorating, I admit it, but there was no way in hell I was going to spend $600 on wallpaper. And based on the prices I've seen online, her quote just seemed wrong. I declined to place an order, hung up, and cried.

Picture Gallery by Sanderson in Red, as seen at John Lewis
Yes, I cried over wallpaper. And yes, I know that's stupid. I was about to give up when Keith called me. I blubbered, "Wallpaper... $600... Crazy...", and he got the gist of it. He went all white knight and began hunting for the paper online while I ranted about Wallpaper Lady. He put my librarian search skills to shame; he found it almost immediately!

Holy mother of high ceilings! As seen at Sanderson
It turns out that while I was busy going back and forth with Wallpaper Lady, Shades Colour Centre listed it on eBay for $97 a roll. Before I bought it, Keith rechecked Wallpaper Lady's math and determined that two rolls will be plenty. The wallpaper crisis was narrowly averted! It arrived a few days ago, I danced around like a giddy kid. I might have done the twist while singing, "I LOVE EVERYTHING BRITISH!" But that can't be confirmed.

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P.S. All trolls will be fed to the bookworms.