Thursday, March 6, 2014

Fabulous Vintage Wallpapers

A friend of mine that I met through the Dolls Houses Past and Present website recently won some fabulous vintage wallpapers at an auction. Some of the papers date back to the early 1900s. At the time I purchased a piece of two of the wallpapers from her, being:

Unfortunately this photo just does not do this paper justice. To start with each pattern is quite large. The greeny blue square alone is nearly 11 inches square. I am hoping to frame one section of this for my wall. The pattern in the middle looks and feels like it is hand painted. You can feel the different layers of each colour. I don't know what the print process was for these old wallpapers but I definitely want to do more research. There is no company name on this paper.

I also bought some of the above paper from her. This was from Allen-Higgens W & Co and was marked Vogue Papers. Apparently the company was a high-end wallpaper manufacturer in Worcester, Massachusetts. The company started in the late 1800s but I am not sure how long the company continued for. Again, more research required. 

I just love this paper and anyone who regularly follows my blog may recognise it as the paper I used in my two giveaway items and the paper I decorated the sewing room with in The Laurels.

These were the two giveaway items I made using scraps of this paper:

Anyway, my friend and I were recently emailing each other about a vintage house on an online auction site when she asked me to re-send my address to her because after seeing what I had made with scraps of the wallpaper she was going to send me a few more scraps in an envelope.

Imagine my excitement when a week or so later a box arrived containing scraps of vintage wallpaper - big big excitement. I kept carefully unwrapping each piece of wallpaper and looking at it. Unfortunately because some of these papers are so old they are a bit fragile but perfectly okay to get pieces big enough for making mini items. In fact there are some fairly generous sized pieces too. I am certainly going to treasure these papers and use them carefully. I might also get a set of small matching frames and  frame some of the wallpapers for the wall. It has confirmed to me how much I love vintage wallpaper and old book end papers and will certainly be keeping an eye out for more.

These are the papers that arrived in the box:

 This is a very thin blue floral wallpaper with YC & DC on the side margin.

A small scrap of floral wallpaper marked 'Standard Papers'.

A small close-up scrap of the fabulous wallpaper below. 
Marked MP & CM of US - Union Made.

 While this particular paper does look very old in fact I think it might be from the 1960s. It is marked on the back 'Hand Printed by Mason Fabrics, Pattern Corona, 332'. I think it may be a design by a William Mason, a New Zealand wallpaper designer, who liked to use late nineteenth century imagery for some of his designs.

Here is an interesting frieze/border - there are two sections. It is design 4763 but there is no company name. My daughter is in the background patiently holding the papers draped over my office chair.

Isn't this a gorgeous border/frieze. No company name. Again there are two different parts to this design. I'm not too sure how these were used together. Maybe the thin strips below could be cut to use around door frames or the like. This design is absolutely gorgeous.

This is another small piece of wallpaper by a company called  Becker Smith & Page, Inc. Phil,A. I have found a record of this company in 1911 and then again in 1922 but haven't really found out much information yet. I will keep digging.

This is a more modern vintage with a smaller scale design good for miniatures. My friend found this in an op shop and kindly shared it with me.

Well I hoped you enjoyed looking at these vintage wallpapers. Just think of all the other wonderful papers that must be out there.

I haven't forgotten that I have promised to do a few tutorials - weathervane, fire screen and rose basket. I will hopefully get one of these tutorials on my blog in the weekend and I will hopefully also do something towards Timeless Toys. 

I am lucky in that I have a three day weekend this weekend as Monday is our region's Anniversary Day.


  1. These wallpapers are wonderful I like the designs.
    Bye, Faby

  2. they are very beautiful, it's too bad they dont make wall paper like that today


  3. Your wallpapers are so cute! you are a sensitive person and you can appreciate all this. A big hug Shari.

  4. What gorgeous papers! I love old wallpaper and fabrics. They're part of history and so special. Thanks for sharing. xo Jennifer

  5. Beautiful wall papers, it is a pity they don't make this kind of wallpapers anymore nowadays. Thanks for sharing, Sharee.
    Hugs, Ilona

  6. What a wonderful gesture from your friend to to Sharee! I can see that your wheels are already turning in you head. The paper seems very fragile. How do you store it?


    1. To be honest Elizabeth I haven't thought as far as how I should store them yet. At the moment they are loosely sitting in the box they came in so they don't get battered and squashed. I might need to get an art folder so I can try to lay them flat but I probably need to put a special tissue or something between them.

  7. Sharee,
    Oh my goodness, what lovely paper! It will be interesting to see how you use them.
    sugar, spice and whatever's nice

  8. Unos papeles preciosos. Me encantan!!!

  9. Cara Sharee, bellissime carte! E quella con la quale hai tappezzato la libreria è uno splendore!
    Un caro abbraccio.Manu

  10. I'm totally in love with the first wallpaper. The color is my favorite as is the design. It's sublime. Thanks for sharing the photos.