Little Greene Paint Blog

  • ‘Painted Papers’ from Little Greene: a definitive compendium of striped wallpapers, produced using traditional printing methods

     

    For our eighth collection of wallpapers, we have once again turned to the archives. ‘Painted Papers’ is a comprehensive compendium of striped wallpapers, which celebrate the historic and harmonious marriage of paint and wallpaper.

    More than ‘just plain stripes’, all ten designs in ‘Painted Papers’ have been reworked from historic patterns sourced from several archives, including those at English Heritage and Manchester’s Whitworth Art Gallery. Faithful to the period in which they were designed, and with many of the colourways also boasting an authentic historic provenance, the wallpapers are nonetheless highly relevant for the 21st Century interior.

    Using traditional surface-printing methods, which originally would have applied paint rather than ink, the production of these papers reflects very closely that used in preceding centuries: it also gives them their delightfully tactile feel and slightly textured appearance. In the early 1800s, the invention of continuous rolls of paper facilitated huge advances in block printing and subsequent surface printing techniques. At the same time, a new fashion for stripes in interior decoration began to emerge. Regency style was heavily influenced by the sudden influx in international commerce, whilst a grander architectural vision brought fresh ideas about space and decoration. Consequently, designers of the time gained a first-hand awareness of how colours and pattern, both in fabrics and on walls, could help shape a room, rather than just adorn it.

    BROAD STRIPE (c.1825)

    A classic ‘Roman’ or Regency proportioned stripe, originally produced in the early 19th Century using the ‘open trough’ method. Using this technique, stripes were created by bands of paint seeping through holes or slots in the bottom of a wooden trough onto the surface of the paper as it was pulled beneath. Striped wallpapers manufactured in this way are characterised by a brushed finish which was later superseded by a flatter print achieved with 19th Century rollers, as can be seen in these papers. The grand scale of this particular stripe is tempered by the restricted use of colour – in each case the stripe sits on a softer ground of the same hue, creating a wallpaper that brings a relaxed structure to a room, without being too formal.

    Broad Stripe

    CARLISLE STREET (c.1890)

    The original wallpaper that inspired this design, found at a property in Carlisle Street in Soho, London, is actually a much more complex pattern than the ‘Painted Papers’ design that has been extracted from it. By removing the solid stripes and extraneous leaf trail, what remains is a wallpaper that achieves all-over pattern but, at the same time, highlights an elegant stripe.

    Carlisle Street

    CAVENDISH STRIPE (c.1965)

    In keeping with its sister wallpaper ‘Marlborough’ from Little Greene’s London Wallpapers II collection, the age of the paper on which this design is based is perhaps misleading in terms of its provenance. Dated at 1965, this particular fragment emerged during English Heritage’s restoration work at Marlborough House on Pall Mall, London, though this paper itself was undoubtedly based on a much earlier original. In Little Greene’s interpretation, the motif – which was in fact a flock – has been completely removed to leave a cleaner, more versatile stripe. In keeping with authentic methods of production, the background strié effect is achieved using a horsehair brush, with the stripe and gilded edges printed on top.

    Cavendish Stripe

    COLONIAL STRIPE (c.1840)

    This design is an accurate reproduction of one of several wallpapers found in a private residence in St James Place, London, dating from around 1840. Its ornate, decorative detail gives it a subtle artisan quality, and the original, richly-coloured blue and red colourway, faithfully reproduced for this collection, is very typical of the Regency era.

    Colonial Stripe

    ELEPHANT STRIPE (c.1850)

    Taking the exact proportion and structural quality of Broad Stripe, each band in this more complex version comprises 42 ‘pin stripes’, creating a sharper, more contemporary look that appeals at first glance and offers even more on closer inspection. Given its finer proportions, this design would have been virtually impossible to print before the arrival of the surface print roller in around 1840.

    Elephant Stripe

    OMBRÉ PLAIN / OMBRÉ STRIPE (c.1956)

    Very much a 20th century design, this is a 1950’s English pattern found at the Whitworth Art Gallery in Manchester. A band of fine, white stripes over flat grounds, it is actually the space between stripes that creates the subtle optical movement. The more complex striped versions contain an additional three ground colours each, and the ‘plain’ versions are produced in matching colourways to coordinate specifically with the different elements of the stripe, offering a highly flexible range of papers to be used in combination in traditional and contemporary homes alike.

    Ombre Stripe

    PAINT SPOT (c.1830)

    This design is a faithful reproduction of an historic French wallpaper. Perhaps surprisingly, the original hails from 1830 and was printed in a bold combination of yellow and pink. Particular attention is paid to the paint reticulation (also known as the seaweed effect) evident within the printed spot element, in giving orientation – there is a definite right and wrong way up for this paper to be hung!

    Paint Spot

    TAILOR STRIPE (c.1968)

    Another 20th Century stripe, each of the papers in this design contains a judicious balance of six tightly packed colours, giving every one an overall theme and several opportunities for picking out painted walls and trim. It has been inspired by the way designers would ‘tag’ colours together when referencing interior design schemes, and as a consequence is inherently close to the way colours were handled by the fashion industry too.

    Tailor Stripe

    TENTED STRIPE (c.1845)

    Originally produced as a design on fabric, the larger scale production of this classic 19th Century stripe was a natural development from the early ‘open trough’ printing method referred to in ‘Broad Stripe’. Its name is taken from the Regency fashion of hanging fabrics in a room to create a ‘tented’ effect. The proportion of the elements within these stripes was typically fairly consistent, but the scale on which they were reproduced (and used) varied considerably. Having been shown extensively in its own right as a stripe, the design was subsequently popularised as a background to a range of larger overprinted designs, including French damasks.

    Tented Stripe

    THAMES (c.1851)

    Faithfully reproduced, but increased in scale, from an eye-catching piece in the English Heritage archive, this historical panorama of the capital was published by London Illustrated News in 1851. The hand-drawn, hand-painted scene depicts the buildings and landscape along the river Thames at that time: it has subsequently been re-mastered to include a repeating section, meaning it can be now hung as a continuing frieze. The original would have been shown at cornice height, but for rooms of a more ‘conventional’ scale, it has been created to sit comfortably at dado or skirting height as well.

    Thames

    ‘Painted Papers’ will be launched in Paris at Maison et Object and Deco Off this weekend. The collection will be available nationally and internationally through Little Greene’s network of distributors, as well as via mail and phone order and online at www.littlegreene.com.

  • New Wallpaper Collection – ‘Painted Papers’

    On 23rd January we will be launching our new wallpaper collection ‘Painted Papers’, a definitive compendium of striped wallpapers produced using traditional printing methods.

    More than ‘just plain stripes’, all eleven designs in ‘Painted Papers’ have been reworked from historic patterns sourced from several archives, including those at English Heritage and Manchester’s Whitworth Art Gallery. Faithful to the period in which they were designed, and with many of the colourways also boasting an authentic historic provenance, the wallpapers are nonetheless highly relevant for the 21st Century interior.

    Each wallpaper has been produced using traditional surface-printing methods, which originally would have applied paint rather than ink, the production of these papers reflects very closely that used in previous centuries: it also gives them their delightfully tactile feel and slightly textured appearance.

    Managing Director, David Mottershead expands on the collection: “In reviving these historic designs we have tried to create a collection to serve homes of all ages and decorative styles. There are also offerings from the early and mid-twentieth centuries, in colourways to suit both the timeless and the cutting-edge interior. As with our previous wallpaper collections, we have judiciously selected paint colours to coordinate or complement each design and tone, to aid selection and encourage the end user to be adventurous.”

    ‘Painted Papers’ will be launched at Maison et Object on 23 January 2015. The collection will be available nationally and internationally through our network of distributors, via telephone (0845 880 5855) and online (www.littlegreene.com).

    More information to follow next week on the new designs. Keep a lookout on our Facebook & twitter pages.

    PP

  • Little Greene & LANE Collaborate – Twin Tone Lampshade

    We have recently collaborated with interior design boutique, LANE to produce six new stunning colourways for their Twin Tone Lampshade. The Twin Tone Lampshade is a pendant lampshade with a simple, beautiful and clean aesthetic. Each lampshade has two different Little Greene colours to form the shade (an inside colour & outside colour).

    Lane products are exclusively designed by creative team Joff and Ollie, who draw inspiration from their experience working as graphic designers, combined with their collection of graphic design from around the world.

    The lampshades are 100% British, made by British craftspeople using high quality materials to ensure that you receive a durable & stylish lampshade whilst giving your home a contemporary Little Greene touch. The lampshades are available in six different Little Greene colour combinations:

    • Loft White and Jack Black: a graphic combination of true white with absolute black, originally produced using soot collected from a burning oil.
    • Serpentine and Orange Aurora (‘50s): a harmonious mix of a mid-grey and a popular accent colour from the 1950s.
    • Basalt and Brighton (‘60s): a timeless blue-black teamed with an extremely versatile, very clean blue-green shade hailing from the 1960s.
    • Loft White and Orange Aurora (‘50s): a true white combined with the successful ‘50s orange shade.
    • Brighton (‘60s) and Mister David: the vivacious, coastal blue-green paired with an uplifting yellow, designed to capture the effect of sunshine in French kitchens!
    • Light Peachblossom (R) and Carmine (‘60s): an effective mixing of eras and tones – marrying a distinctive, dusky pink Regency shade with a more vibrant pink from 1968.

    Retailing at £65, the limited edition Lane ‘Twin Tone Lampshades’ will be stocked in the Little Greene showroom in Marylebone (020 7935 8844020 7935 8844 marylebone@littlegreene.com). They will also be available via www.lanebypost.com/shop and stockists nationwide from 24 November 2014.

  • Little Greene Supporting 'The Haven' Charity

    We would like to say an enormous thank you to everyone who took part in our Breast Cancer Awareness campaign this October. We’re delighted with the fantastic response from our customers and stockists who sent us some wonderful photographs showing their support for ‘The Haven’, our chosen charity.

    We managed to raise a fantastic £9435.62 for ‘The Haven’ charity which will go towards helping those suffering from the emotional impacts of breast cancer.

    This year, we have encouraged our stockists to get involved in our Breast Cancer Awareness campaign through social media and we received some very creative photographs from our stockists on Facebook & twitter. ‘Callaghan Interiors’ dressed their whole shop in pink and John Charles from John Charles Interiors dressed up as a lion from The Wizard of Oz wearing one of our aprons! Many stockists posted their photos on twitter & Facebook holding our #LittleGreeneBCA sign.

    We decided to give ‘John Charles Interiors’ the prize for being our most creative (see image below). They have donated their £250 prize to Prostate Cancer UK.

    We would like to say a huge thank you to ‘Callaghan Interiors’, ‘Brewers Exeter’, ‘Brewers Sittingbourne’, ‘Ashby Decs, Brewers Lewisham’, ‘Unique Interiors’, ‘Kent Blaxill’, ‘John Charles Interiors’ and ‘Architectural Ironmongery’ for entering our stockist competition and supporting ‘The Haven’ charity with us this October.

    You can see all the photos sent in from our stockists below.

    'John Charles Interiors'

    'Callaghan Interiors'

    'Architectural Ironmongery'

    'Brewers - Sittingbourne'

    'Kent Blaxill'

    'Brewers - Lewisham'

    'Brewers - Exeter'

  • Women's Institute - Little Greene Makeover Competition

    We had a fantastic response from Women’s Institutes across the country and would like to thank everyone who entered the competition.

    We have recently announced the winners for our Women’s Institute - Makeover competition. We asked institutes throughout the UK to tell us why they were worthy of winning a Little Greene Makeover. The prizes were as follows:

    1st prize - £1000 worth of paints and/or wallpapers, colour consultation and £500 towards decorating costs

    2nd prize - £500 worth of paints and/or wallpapers and £250 towards decorating costs

    3rd prize - £200 worth of paints and/or wallpapers and £100 towards decorating costs

    After a long and difficult review of all our entries, it was decided that The Hopwood Women’s Institute deserved our 1st place prize due to their sheer determination to restore & rejuvenate their historic institute on the eve of their centenary year after recently being forced to move out due to their building being too dangerous to function in.

    For 2nd place, we decided that The Aughton Women’s Institute’s application was our most creative entry with the inclusion of their old poem written for the institute in 1991.

    3rd place went to Germoe & District Women’s Institute for having the most interesting institute consisting of their WW2 bomb shelter telephone exchange.

    We have decided to give every institute a £50 Little Greene voucher for participating in our WI Makeover competition. We look forward to updating you on the progress from our competition winners in the future, so keep a lookout for further updates!

    Again, we would like to thank everyone who entered the competition.

  • Breast Cancer Awareness Month with Little Greene

    Little Greene needs your help this October as we team up with the Breast Cancer charity ‘The Haven’ for Breast Cancer Awareness month. We’re aiming to raise as much money as possible for The Haven Support Centres who provide a wide range of therapies, information, advice, workshops and classes all designed to help patients and their families cope with the physical and emotional side-effects of breast cancer and its treatment. £1000 provides one patient with a ten week course of therapy and we’ll be donating 15p from every tin of paint & roll of wallpaper sold in October to help as many patients as possible!
    The Haven has three support centres, London, Hereford and Yorkshire and they are looking to expand further with their fourth support centre due to open in Hampshire. We are delighted to have supplied The Haven with 200 litres of paint to help with the refurbishment of their Grade II listed property in Wessex.
    Also, as part of our Breast Cancer Awareness campaign, we’re giving you the chance to win a Limited Edition Little Greene Breast Cancer Awareness aprons through our Facebook & twitter pages.

    Keep a lookout on our Facebook & twitter pages for further updates!

    Let’s support Breast Cancer Awareness Month together!

  • ‘Moments of Colour’ – Little Greene Collaborate with Fashion Designer Edeline Lee

    We’re delighted to announce our recent collaboration with internationally renowned, high-end fashion designer Edeline Lee for the production of our new striking and highly individual advert for AW14. ‘Moments of Colour’ was previewed when Edeline Lee unveiled her SS15 collection at London Fashion Week.

    London based fashion designer Edeline Lee is a graduate of Central Saint Martins: she was apprenticed to Alexander McQueen and John Galliano before becoming Associate Creative Director for Zac Posen in New York and Head Designer for Rodnik in London. She founded her own label in 2012 and is defined by her signature of structured, feminine shapes with clean modernist lines and precise attention to quality, enhanced by thoughtful decorative details.

    The advert, intriguingly titled ‘Moments of Colour’, represents a joint collaboration between two luminaries in their individual fields, a unique marriage of visionary interior design with cutting edge creativity.

    ‘Moments of Colour’ consists of eight separate room sets, each with it’s own unique identity and distinctive personality, complemented by a designer colour collection of cutting edge womenswear, some highlighted by additional architectural design details. Resembling the interior of a beautifully executed two-storey dolls’ house, these enchanting rooms create a dramatic statement through the application of both judiciously-selected shades and the stunning silhouettes of Edeline’s striking SS15 collection.

    Our MD, David Mottershead confirms: “We know that interior designers have traditionally kept a close eye on the fashion world as it operates at the forefront of colour interpretation. We are delighted by Little Greene’s collaboration with Edeline Lee, which has allowed each party to step into the world of the other: working with current trends, drawing inspiration and broadening one another’s horizons as a consequence. It will form the basis of our AW14 advertising campaign and we are tremendously exciting to be presenting something very thought-provoking and undeniably ‘different’.”

    Edeline Lee adds: “Working with Little Greene on a project of this scale has been such an effortless joy. The company has inspired me to develop new ways of working with, and seeing, colour.”

    These spectacular advertising images are set to be in magazines from October. They can be found in the following UK publications:  Living Etc, House & Garden, House Beautiful, Elle Decoration, Ideal Home, Homes & Garden, Country Homes & Interiors, Country Living and Good Homes.

    ‘Moments of Colour’ will be reproduced on our stand C53 at Decorex, Syon Park between 21 – 24 September.

    Remember, keep a lookout on our Facebook & twitter pages for further updates.

  • Little Greene at Decorex International 2014

    Decorex International 2014

    This Sunday Little Greene will be exhibiting at Decorex International on stand C53 at Syon Park. This exhibition is internationally renowned for being the most supreme event for the very best luxury brands.

    Decorex has been at the heart of design for 37 years and from 21st – 24th September you’ll find us there on stand C53 where you’ll get a preview of our new ad campaign ‘Moments of Colour’. The stand is designed to resemble the interior of a beautifully executed two-storey dolls’ house, these enchanting rooms create a dramatic statement through the application of both Little Greene’s judiciously-selected shades and the stunning silhouettes of high-end fashion designer, Edeline Lee's striking SS15 collection.

    Also at this year’s Decorex we will be launching ‘Highlights’, an eclectic melting pot of colour combinations – using sophisticated base shades and bold accents, or ‘highlights’.

    If you are planning to attend this year’s Decorex, do come over to our stand and say hello!

  • Little Greene ‘Highlights’ Competition

    This weekend at Decorex International we'll be showcasing our Little Greene 'Highlights'! To celebrate the launch on Sunday, we are running a competition here on our blog to give you the chance to win a one hour in-house colour consultation at our London showroom in Marylebone.

    To enter simply tell us which of the following colour combinations is your favourite and why. All you need to do is leave a comment below. The best answer will be announced on Friday! Good Luck!

  • Little Greene Introduces New 'Highlights' at Decorex International This September

    Following the resounding success of our Grey collection, we have been considering the next chapter in the Book of Colour for the cutting edge interior designer.

    We have experimented with different colour combinations from our Colours of England card. We found that with most of us living modern lives in buildings originally designed for completely different lifestyles, there were interesting ways to use our historical ‘neutral colours’, whilst forming the basis of contemporary design schemes; not by changing them but by changing the colours used with them.

    These beautiful ‘new’ colour combinations were created using natural earth pigments and often contained black, given a muted quality that is generally associated with what we believe to be ‘true’ historical paint shades, even though this soft quality was frequently the result of aging on the painted surface rather than the authentic, intended hue.

    Our ‘Colour Highlights’ will be launched at Decorex International this September.

    Some notable combinations include:

    - Telecom Tower meets Broughton House – The legendary 1960s restaurant colour ‘Hicks Blue’ with the Regency shade ‘Green Verditer’-

    - Pure cool grey with a bright streak of 1970s chic – ‘Grey Teal’ with ‘Marigold’

    - The popular Regency shade ‘Yellow Pink’ with ‘Lamp Black’ woodwork in place of the traditional favoured off-white

    - The charming Victorian colour ‘Sage Green’, paired-perhaps surprisingly, with the ultra-blue ‘Mambo’

    - Georgian landscape pioneer Humphrey Repton’s ‘Invisible Green’ with the rather less formal pink ’Leather’ from the 1970’s

    For further updates, keep a lookout on our Facebook & twitter pages!

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