We installed grasscloth wallpaper and it is even better than I was imagining! After living in our home for 9 months with untouched dining room walls, it was like putting lipstick on for the first time. The grasscloth dresses up the room and takes it to another level. I had my reservations as the grasscloth wallpaper installation was more costly, timely, and a bigger risk than paint, but it is all worth it.
What Is Grasscloth Wallpaper?
Grasscloth is a textured wallpaper, made of natural fibers that produces a looklike a fabric. The fibers are strands that can include sea grass, hemp, arrowroot grass, jute, bamboo and raffia. No two strands are completely identical in color, because the dye takes differently, but this is part of its character. The different fibers give the wallpaper horizontal textured lines that do not line up evenly from roll to roll. This creates an intentional pattern of bands on your wall, adding depth that works well in more formal or modern spaces.
Faux grasscloth is another option. Faux grasscloth is more affordable and can get somewhat close to looking like the real thing, with less of an inconvenience.
Picking Out Navy Grasscloth Wallpaper
I did consider just painting the room just a flat navy to keep this simple, but nothing is ever simple with me. Painted walls weren’t going to cut it when I wanted a textured look! I picked this navy grasscloth from York Wallcoverings. I knew I wanted to go with a deep blue grasscloth, despite being hesitant to install such a dark color. There would be no “redo”. Wallpaper is a big expensive commitment.
On top of this everyone around me was saying “You want wallpaper?!!” But as we filled our home with light furnishings, I was even more certain I wanted to go with a deep navy color. I love that white on white is the trend now (clearly), but I thought this dark contrast was needed for interest and drama. The moldings brings lot of white into the room, it lets the light bounce around and it doesn’t feel too dark.
The project started like this: I talk to my husband about the pros and cons of a million different ways I could style the room, show him endless pictures of grasscloth in magazines and on Pinterest, and follow up with questions without waiting for his answer. He says things like “hmmm” over and over and stares at other things in the room… maybe something out the window. Once I make up my mind, I tell him the price of everything, ignore the response, wait a few days for him to absorb the shock, and then he says Ok babe, just do it already.
Update: see the whole dining room reveal here!
Grasscloth Wallpaper Installation:
This is more of a personal decision, but we hired this job out as it was way above our level. Although I have a little experience with hanging wallpaper, grasscloth as you are probably finding out is the wild one in the bunch. Watching my installer put it up I was so relieved I didn’t try this myself. It was messy- her hands were stained blue from the dyes- and it looked like something I would have royally screwed up. A good installer will help you measure your space too, so you know how much to order.
The before of our empty dining room:
This is where we started when we built the home. This room was a blank slate. The walls here were primed, ready for paint or wallpaper. We lived like this for 9 months while we settled in. Also while I obsessed endlessly over all the grasscloth wallpaper options.
After installation of the grasscloth wallpaper:
See this light:
This York wallpaper delivered. It is high quality paper, thick and has a slight sheen on it. It added depth and dimension to the room that paint just wouldn’t give.
A peek from the butler’s pantry on the other side of the room:
See This Light:
3 Important Things To Know Before Choosing Grasscloth Wallpaper (Navy or Otherwise!)
- Grasscloth and water do NOT mix. It can’t get wet without leaving a stain. Unless you have moldings underneath, I would use faux grasscloth in bathrooms and other areas. You can’t clean it!
- Grasscloth bleeds, and the darker color the worse it is. I wouldn’t choose a dark navy blue grasscloth if we didn’t have high moldings (5.5 feet). It will rub off if you rubbed something light colored against it hard enough. I am not sure why an adult would do that but kids most certainly would find a reason to rub against walls! If you have moldings or trim on a portion of your walls, grasscloth wallpaper would be great on the upper portion where it won’t be touched. I am not sure the lighter colors bleed.
- The seams will show. This isn’t traditional wallpaper where that can be avoided. With grasscloth, it is made of natural fibers and seams at the edge of the paper are the nature of the beast. If you are using a dark grasscloth, like this navy, they will be less obvious if the back of the wallpaper is a darker color. That being said, mine is white on the back and although you can see the seams, I’m fine with it. I noticed in every magazine or photo of grasscloth wallpaper, you can see the seams too!
Get The Look:
Update: Our dining room is filled with furniture. See our navy dining room reveal here!
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If you are considering installing grasscloth wallpaper in your own home, I hope my experience installing grasscloth wallpaper helped you!