Monday, March 30, 2009

Custom Wallpaper Project: NCAA-Inspired Basketball Wallpaper

As March Madness has officially gotten underway leading to the Four Four, there couldn't be a more exciting time of the year for collegiate basketball fans. Consider a custom wallpaper project inspired by the NCAA for the dedicated and committed super fan. We've given two possible photographic wall mural ideas, as shown above.

The first image of two players fighting it out during a layup is a great literal representation of a basketball mural on wallpaper. The sepia tone gives it a vintage feel, sure to dredge up nostalgic memories of childhood spent on the local basketball court. The image on the right offers a more traditional take on wallpaper, simply using multiple basketballs to create a loose wallpaper pattern.

These two custom wallpaper ideas would be a welcome addition to any super fan's den or man-cave. Or, perhaps you have your own digital photograph of a game that you'd like transformed into a wall mural. Just contact us to start the custom wall mural ordering process, or feel free to test our creativity for more basketball themed custom wallpaper ideas.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Digital Photography Project: Pet Pop Art

The family pet has long been the unofficial family member. While we all know we should treat our pets in such a way to establish dominance and order, it's so easy to spoil your pet and lavish it with the same level of attention as a human child.

Though any dog trainer worth his salt would discourage this behavior, they would have no room for critique when it comes to transforming one of your digital images of your pet as a pop art-inspired art piece. The end result, as shown, has a look reminiscent of Warhol, but the process is purely digital. We take your digital photo, desaturate it of color, add in some effects that mimic silk screen anomalies, and finish the look by adding in vibrant fields of color. The final design is then printed on artist canvas, stretched over 1/2" non-warping foam board, and arrives ready to hang. The image can also be printed on wallpaper for a custom wall mural as well.

So stop spoiling your pet and reinforcing negative behaviors, and treat yourself to a fabulous art piece that you will enjoy for years to come. Opt for a custom wallpaper installation of your pet's pop art image for a larger than life homage to your dog, cat, bird, or whatever pet you have. Contact us today to learn more.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Custom Wallpaper Project: Foyer Custom Wallpaper

A client in New York had a phenomenal photograph from a trip out West of a thicket of ball cacti. His hope was to have this image produced as a custom wall mural for his foyer. The image itself was vertically aligned and in color. The client had some design savvy, and manipulated his own image in Photoshop, giving the cacti a photographic negative effect.

When he contacted us to produce the custom wallpaper he had designed, he still needed to have the image repeated to fill the whole wall, but he wanted an organic, non-pattern look. The final result is displayed. The negative effect is very striking, and the expansion of the native image to fill the whole wall is executed in such a way that you would have no idea that the photo was manipulated.

The foyer is an ideal spot for a custom wallpaper installation. As your guests enter your home, give them a moment's pause when they see a gorgeous wall mural such as our client's mural from New York. You can only make a first impression once, and a custom wall mural located in the foyer will certainly leave your visitor excited and curious about the rest of your home. Additionally, most foyers are relatively smaller places, so a custom wall mural can be placed on a smaller wall, keeping the budget tight while still getting maximum impact for your investment. Do you have an image that would be well suited for your foyer? Contact us to start your own custom wallpaper project.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Custom Wallpaper Project: Decorating Your Wet Bar

Happy hour, that age old tradition of enjoying cocktails and laughter with friends to melt away to worries and woes of the workday. And if you're fortunate to have your own home wet bar, there is no better place to stage your very own happy hour.

While you're busy entertaining your guests, let this custom wallpaper design wow your friends and family. This wallpaper design is a perfect fit for a wet bar, showcasing numerous varieties of glassware. The glassware itself has been tinted, so the purple hue of the bar stools could be played off the wallpaper.

The scale of the glassware in the wall mural will get your guests talking as well. Taking these normally smaller elements and exaggerating them to huge proportions is a clever way to maximize impact while still being completely unique. If you'd like to switch up the custom wallpaper design, we could create a pattern out of martini glasses instead of the glassware shown. Or play with the wallpaper's scale again, and go for a huge cocktail olive. With custom wallpaper options as varied and unique as cocktails, contact us to learn more about decorating your wet bar.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Custom Wallpaper Design: Girls' Room Wallpaper

One of the most fun concepts for a custom wallpaper project for a girl's room is our "Sweet Shop" wallpaper, as shown above. The wallpaper draws inspiration from the penny candy stores of the '50's. The wallpaper design features shelves laid out in a realistic way, with proper perspective given strong consideration, to make our Sweet Shop wallpaper look just like real shelves of candy.

Lining the shelves are antique glass jars filled with jelly beans and other sweet stuff. Keep in mind that what you are seeing in the image above is merely two-dimensional wallpaper, not real shelves with candy jars; this wallpaper design is often mistaken for the real thing since it appears so three dimensional.

If girls are sugar and spice and everything nice, our Sweet Shop wallpaper is the ideal fit for a girl's room. Keep in mind that we can customize this wallpaper fully, from changing the color of the shelves to adding in different types of candy within the jars. We can even add labels to the candy jars with your special little girl's name to personalize the custom wallpaper even further. Contact us to learn more about commissioning custom wallpaper for your girl's room today!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Custom Wallpaper Project: Abraham Lincoln Wallpaper

Not that you'd expect to see the following statement in any decor blog, but Lincoln is hotter than ever! Seriously though, Abraham Lincoln has been the center of attention since President Obama made his historic inaugural train trip into Washington DC, emulating the same route that Lincoln himself took from their shared home state 150 years ago.

The connection clearly isn't as superficial as the train ride; Lincoln freed the salves, and Barack Obama as an African-American President is the epitome of those slaves' dreams fulfilled. Lincoln may arguably be the most important American President, but apart from that he was a visually striking man. Of course, his extreme height and slender frame gave him the immediate presence that most politicians envy. But it was Lincoln's eyes, in particular his heavy eyelids, that serve to personify his look. It's this exact look we were attempting to capture in the Abraham Lincoln Wallpaper shown above.

The "Lincolnwall" wallpaper is well-suited as a wall mural, but could easily be reduced in size to accommodate a smaller wall space above a chair rail or wainscoting. The striking features of Lincoln are represented in the wallpaper design with dramatic line work reminiscent of lithographs. The bold lines maintain center stage as the background color is simple and muted.

This design is not yet featured on our website, but feel free to contact us to inquire about the Lincoln wallpaper. As President Obama was inspired by Lincoln's famous train ride into Washington, you can now paper your walls with that same source of inspiration as well.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Wallgazer Wallpaper Design: Plug Research

The mixing board has never been so visually appealing. At Wallgazer, we have executed one of the most unique wallpaper murals available today.
"Plug Research" at first glance has a Spirograph-inspired swirl of shapes radiating out from the interior of the piece. Light grays and blacks seem to be the only colors present in the mural.

But upon closer inspection, the true detail of the original wallpaper design reveals itself: shapes and patterns that seemed nondescript are actually buttons and knobs of a sound board. Wires snake over and around plugs and sockets. Accents of red are scattered throughout the wallpaper, breaking up the cool gray tones.

The frenetic energy created by the wall mural makes it the perfect candidate for a space with an otherwise more understated decor theme. This mural would be stellar in a room with crisp modern white walls, sparse furniture and artwork. Or, turn the volume up to eleven and work this mural in with even more colors and patterns to create a room with a frantically light-hearted feel. See more original wallpaper designs at

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Custom Wallpaper Imagery: Architectural Elements

Some of the most interesting imagery you can use for a custom wallpaper project are architectural images. It can seem redundant to some, having a wallpaper mural of a wall put on, well, a wall. But as you can see from the picture on the left, there are some exciting ways to use architectural elements in your custom wall mural.

A detail from a building can be even more interesting than an image of the structure as a whole. Much in the same way a satellite photograph reveals patterns and nuances one wouldn't see on ground level, an architectural detail becomes an abstraction of the original subject. Our sample image is a perfect example of this. There certainly isn't enough information going on in the image to denote its location, but there's more than enough visual interest to make this image a great candidate for custom wallpaper. The repetition of form and intersecting lines, matched with the slanted perspective of the shot provide the main thrust of the image, while the cool blue and gray tones support the overall look.

Custom wallpaper projects based off of architectural elements can be inspired from around the world; think intricate scroll work at the Taj Mahal, or the swirling modernism of a Gehry project. Need more ideas? Contact us to begin your custom wallpaper project today!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Custom Wallpaper: Museum Installations

Though our custom wall mural and wallpaper services are well suited for many spaces and requirements, there may be no better match for custom wallpaper than the museum or exhibit space. There is no cost-effective, quicker, or better suited option for combining both imagery and verbiage than custom wallpaper.

As our custom wallpaper is printed in panels, installation is very simple, especially when completed by a professional wallpaper hanger. With the wallpaper preparation, hard signage and cut lettering is eliminated, ensuring a much less expensive and timelier install.

The image above is from the Motown Historical Museum in Detroit. The custom wall mural is a timeline, laying out important figures and dates within Motown's history. It's plain to see that even though so many prominent performers as well as information are included in the mural, the finished look is still clean and easily understandable. The Motown Historical Museum is an incredible landmark, and should definitely make it on the to-do list of any traveler in the Detroit area. The "Snake Pit," the original recording space where many of Motown's first hits were produced, is still intact and positively still radiating an incredible energy.

In addition to the Motown Historical Museum, we also did custom wallpaper printing for the Elvis Presley Birthplace Museum. Even though these examples are from the highest tiers of the recording industry, our custom wallpaper can be used for a display space in schools or daycare situations as well, anywhere that information needs be displayed in an engaging manner that will captivate your audience. Contact us to learn more!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Boy's Bedroom: Custom Nautical Wallpaper

Kids' rooms can be both the easiest and most challenging to decorate. On one hand, there are certainly countless companies that produce decor for children's spaces. There is no lack of options, and many visual decor themes are widely available thanks to specialty stores and the internet. On the other hand, you want to provide your child with wallpaper and furnishings that they will not only love now, but as they continue to grow and mature.

This is the central challenge to decorating your child's room: keeping your design choices fresh and cost-effective while also keeping a weary eye on the fickleness of children.

The nautical look, a classic boys room decor theme, is one that we have easily updated to maintain your child's appreciation of his decor and wallpaper for years to come. Oftentimes nautical decor is boring in it expectedness; cartoon life preservers, buoys, and anchors thoughtlessly mashed together on wallpaper and wallpaper borders. This look is stale out of the box, and your son will certainly lose most if not all interest in his decor shortly into his early tween years.

Substitute the common nautical wallpaper with a bold custom wallpaper wall mural. In the image above, we focused on larger elements, three sail masts with criss-crossing rigging. The striking nature of the image gives it a modernity that you'd never find in a wallpaper catalog. This updated wallpaper look can easily continue to interestingly work with your child's evolving room decor, even as other previously treasured lamps, rugs, and other pieces fall to the wayside.

With so many image choices available, let us assist you in finding just the right image for a mural in your son's nautical inspired room. Or, if you have your own picture of a beautifully colored sail boat or related object, submit it to see if it can be used for a custom wall mural that no other child will have.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Custom Wallpaper vs. Custom Wall Murals: What Is The Difference?

At Great Wall Custom Coverings, we receive many inquiries about our custom wallpaper printing and design services. One of the most frequent questions we receive is, "What is the difference between your custom wallpaper and custom wall murals?

The short answer; there really isn't a difference. We print our wallpaper wall murals on digitally printable wallpaper. Additionally, we print our custom wallpaper on the same digitally printable wallpaper. So why the distinction?

It has to do simply with the subject matter of the wallpaper. Our wall murals feature a full photographic or artistic scene, like a landscape or cityscape, such as the photo on the above right. Our custom wallpaper is what you would consider more traditional wallpaper; pattern repeats and static designs that do not focus on single, large photographic feature, such as the image on the above left.

The majority of our photographic custom wall murals are located at, our main website, though we also offer some graphic wallpaper there as well. You can find the wallpaper pattern shown above at our newest site,

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Graphic Wallpaper by Great Wall Custom Coverings

Graphic inspired wallpaper patterns have been making a steady comeback for the last few years. No longer are you forced to choose from stale wallpaper patterns. You can easily update any space with graphic wallpapers, like the pattern shown above, "Arrow Morocco."

Arrow Morocco and many other graphic wallpaper patterns we have designed are available here. This wallpaper pattern as well as our other graphic wallpapers may be customized fully. Colors can be altered to match your existing decor easily. As well, the size and scale of each pattern can be adjusted to your liking: larger repeats for a more bold statement, and tighter repeats for more static presentations.

Instead of covering a whole wall, consider doing a larger stripe across your wall, think of it as a glorified border. Expand the look all around the room while stretching your decorating dollar for maximum impact. There are limitless possibilities with graphic wallpaper, contact us for more ideas.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Custom Wallpaper Project: Decorating the Home Theater

When it comes to decorating the home theater, digitally printed wallpaper is the handiest tool at your disposal. Though the home theater is to be enjoyed by the whole family, typically it is the man of the house who takes the reigns in the task of fleshing out the theater's decor scheme.

When it comes to the gentlemen and their home theaters, a popular trend is producing custom wallpaper for the ceiling. Most often the wallpaper is of a celestial scene. These scenes can vary from typical star fields you commonly associate with outer space, while others are more abstract swirls of gas clouds and dust.

Aside from elevating your home theater's ceiling to the heavens, the starry wallpaper helps to reinforce that dream like state that only a good film can induce. This custom wallpaper application truly meshes perfectly with the intended use of the home theater, both aesthetically and pragmatically.

Recently, fiber-optic ceiling treatments have appeared. While these are incredible to behold, they are certainly far more expensive than custom wallpaper. Additionally, our mural wallpaper requires virtually no maintenance.

Think about continuing the look down the sides of some prominent walls to tie everything together; or consider using coordinating giclee with additional images from our Space Images Gallery.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Creative Wallcoverings: Mosaic Tile Wallpaper

A lot of the custom wallpaper projects we produce seek to enhance and transform an environment. With our mosaic tile wallpaper, the wallpaper itself becomes transformative, moving beyond the confines of traditional wallpaper. Though of course the wallpaper is flat & 2 dimensional, the tile print gives the paper a 3D appearance.

Having the authentic look on wallpaper is advantageous for a number or reasons; wallpaper is less expensive than real tile, and it is also easier to install. Additionally, the time in which it takes to install the wallpaper as opposed to tile is much less.

Another important factor is that we can print just about any tile finish and texture. That can be simply repeated out for a traditional wallpaper approach. Or, we can convert an image and overlay a tile texture, to create the look of a mosaic tile mural. Such is the look of the Geisha image above. An old Japanese print was scanned, with a tumbled marble tile texture then added in. The resulting mural still is able to communicate that the characters are Geisha, even though they have been simplified compositionally. The tumbled marble look gives an even more vintage appearance to the piece as well.

The design process needed to convert images to this look was conceived and executed by Great Wall. The mosaic tile wallpaper can be used in the kitchen or bath, or move beyond the typical places you'd expect to find tile, and have a unique feature wall outfitted with a mosaic mural in your living room or master bedroom. Whether you use the mosaic tile wallpaper as just a border or for a full room, you will be amazed by how convincing and real the wallpaper looks, and how well it will enhance your decor.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Custom Wallpaper Problems: Right Image, Wrong Resolution

Finding the perfect image is always the first step in any custom wallpaper project. The right image for you may of course be entirely wrong for another, but once you've settled on your desired image, it's difficult to go back and change your selection. However, that's exactly what is required from time to time, as images that may look good on your computer screen can absolutely fall apart when blown up to mural size. Fortunately at Great Wall, we offer full design and image research services that allow us to circumvent most roadblocks to creating your custom wallpaper.

Take the above imagery for example. The inspiration image on the left was stumbled upon by a client. The look and feel of the image was perfect for her wall mural, but the resolution of the image was such that it couldn't be printed any larger than an 8" x 10." What to do? Using our stock image resources, we were able to locate a color shot of the historic Route 66 roadway with the same markings. First, we desaturated the image to black and white, and tilted the skyline to mimic the inspiration image. To finish the wallpaper design, we added in a different sky to the finished mural, to again emulate the inspiration image as closely as possible.

The result speaks for itself: though the images aren't completely identical, the look and feel of the final design was so close to the inspiration image that the custom wallpaper project was able to achieved. Do you have an image you'd like to have considered for a wall mural? Visit our custom order page to get started.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Boutique Hotel Custom Wallpaper

Located in Toronto's creative and artistic center, the Gladstone Hotel offers a boutique hotel experience like none other. The concept of the Gladstone revolves around it's role in putting travelers and locals alike in touch with the local creative design scene, providing exhibition and event spaces in addition to lodgings. To up the ante, the Gladstone then immerses you in 100% unique artist appointed rooms that push the limits of traditional interior design.

One such artist is Day Milman, a Toronto based artist and video-maker, who commissioned us to print her room's custom wallpaper. Milman was focused on sharing the historical side of the hotel, and it's connection with the locals who frequented there. She used archival photographs to create detailed line drawings of the hotel as well as it's guests and workers in various social situations.

She then contacted us at Great Wall, to take her drawings and arrange them into a classic toile wallpaper pattern. Whereas traditional toile wallpaper has pastoral scenes of the countryside aristocracy, Milman's updated toile celebrates the hotel's specific history, while still utilizing a standard blue and off-white palate. We took her incredible drawings, scanned them, and then laid them out in the toile pattern while also establishing the pattern repeat. You can learn more about Milman's process and the room itself here.

Insofar as custom wallpaper projects go, this was a very clever way of reinventing a classic for all the right reasons, and executed in just the right way. The next time you're in Toronto, make sure your trip includes a visit to the Gladstone Hotel. To have a custom wallpaper installation in your home, contact us via our website to begin the process.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Custom Wallpaper Project: Motivational Imagery

There are about as many motivations behind commissioning custom wallpaper as there are images to help bring that motivation to visual fruition. In the case above, wall murals of fit athletes engaged in physical activity are prominently placed in a work out area. The gym specifically is Shoreline Fitness in Clinton CT. We assisted them with this custom wallpaper project in late 2008.

The impact of the imagery is clear, these wall murals will clearly help to motivate even the most novice gym member in achieving their goals. With an array of perfected physical specimens squarely in their face as they work out, gym members get an extra kick by seeing the possible end result of their labors.

This is the real beauty of custom wallpaper: it has the capacity to truly affect the viewer due to it's grand scale. When thoughtfully laid out, the wallpaper not only conveys it's message, but also coordinates well and enhances additional decor within a space. The teals that are carried through the gym are represented in the wallpaper, keeping the gym's decor continuous as well as impacting.

Images used for custom wallpaper can motivate you or your clients in infinite ways, start your custom wallpaper project with Great Wall Custom Coverings today!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Graphic Designers: Use Your Own Design

At our main website, we print from an online catalog of hundreds of photographs. We also encourage our clients to upload their own photography so that they can be transformed into a custom wallpaper or mural. Of course, using your own image for a giclee is a great way to display your work and share it with your friends and family (giclee is an artist canvas print stretched over board; a finished art piece that is ready to hang).

However, there are many graphic designers out there who not only have photography that can be produced as a custom giclee, but also designs that deserve the giclee treatment as well. Today, good design is not merely a commercial commodity; good design is an art form. Our custom giclee service is great for designers to have their work produced as an art piece because it's cost effective and gives a polished, professional result.

Our custom giclee are cost effective since they're produced digitally, no expensive offset printing set-up charges. Of course, since there is no set-up fee, it's easy to have your work printed on demand individually, so you won't have to have hundreds of pieces printed to offset your set-up charges.

Our printing capabilities utilize a six color process, giving you a wider range and color sensitivity. The result is vibrant color and clarity, delivered via eco-solvent based inks that do not suffer from the same UV instability of most aqueous based printers, and that are completely water proof.

We accept most file formats, start here for a custom giclee quote!

Monday, March 2, 2009

Wallgazer Original Wallpaper Design: Disintegration

Another new Wallgazer design waiting to drop, entitled "Disintegration." Disintegration re-imagines the traditional static wallpaper pattern. To the right of the design, the wallpaper repeat holds tightly, a stair step pattern that is petal inspired.

However, the pattern is deconstructed as it makes it's way to the left. The petals appear to be blowing away in a strong wind, turning the wallpaper's focus from pattern repetition to a study of void and white space.

The wallpaper, shown in it's original color scheme, can be customized. Like most of our custom wallpaper, Disintegration can be altered to match your color and decor seamlessly. The hue can be shifted in full, or we can adjust specific colors individually, all according to you.

Disintegration will be available soon from, in the meantime, there are over 50 wallpaper designs currently available. Even more wallpaper designs will be added to Wallgazer shortly, so check back frequently.