Author: Gregory Herringshaw

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Nancy McClelland: Making Antique New
The Colonial revival movement in the early years of the twentieth century prompted a number of wallpaper manufacturers to start reproducing antique patterns. The majority of the manufacturers were printing these copies using wallpaper printing machines, while most of the antique papers being copied were originally woodblock printed. While printing machines were the current technology...
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Wallpaper With a View
This style of paper is referred to as a figural landscape or landscape figures. Wallpapers in this genre usually contain three to four different landscape views, quite often centered on a theme. They can focus on harbor views, the hunt, or more humble scenes such as this one, which might be called The Homecoming, or...
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Charles Burchfield’s Modern Wallpaper
Charles Burchfield is one of the best known American watercolorists of the 20th century, painting urban street scenes as well as more rural landscapes in a rather sullen fashion. It is less well known that he designed wallpaper, working for the M. H. Birge and Sons company in Buffalo, New York, from 1921 until 1929,...
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Rocking and Scrolling
I have always loved these Rococo-style wallpaper designs with their large scale boldness, trompe l’oeil effects, and attention to detail. This paper is rather late in date for a Rococo wallpaper but it was a new design in 1901 as noted by the “Patented January 8, 1901” printed in the selvedge. The Rococo style was...
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Another Wallflower
This wallpaper was once part of a showroom sample book that was unbound at some point and then later donated to the Cooper Hewitt. The samples are a nice group of art nouveau and Mission-style wallpapers. This paper is a good example of American art nouveau design with its large-scale floral motif filling the width...
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Marilyn Monroe on a Roll, Literally
Featuring the familiar image of Marilyn Monroe this wallpaper is drama on a roll, and another recent acquisition to the museum’s permanent collection. Working with the Warhol Foundation, Flavor Paper was able to sort through original Warhol documents to find inspiration for an exciting collection of wallpapers, making Marilyn available as a wallpaper for the...
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Jack Lenor Larsen Designs for the Wall
This is another wallpaper sample book that was recently photographed as part of the museum’s mass digitization. The book contains a compilation of three different collections: two collections designed by Jack Lenor Larsen with a total of twelve patterns, and the third collection by William Skilling with another four patterns. Larsen designed his first collection...
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Puzzle Me This
Stitched Puzzle is from David Rockwell’s first collection of wallcoverings designed for Maya Romanoff. Rockwell has designed everything from stage sets and hotels to playgrounds and home furnishings, and with this collection has created a line of wall surfaces available for commercial sale. Stitched Puzzle was inspired by a Maya Romanoff design classic titled Weathered...
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Your Own Little Sunrise
I have noticed a trend over the past few years for ombré wallpapers, papers that have subtle color shifts or blends from one color to another. This creates quite a beautiful effect and can introduce multiple colors in a room without weighing down the design with a heavy pattern. Not that I have anything against...