Category Archives: All Eyes on decorating

Using Tapestries, Paint, Wood Paneling and Wallpaper for That Medieval Look

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Walls are such a blank canvas for the imagination. Anyone with an artistic flair or inclination will have a royally good time decorating their walls.
The Wikipedia defines tapestries as textile art, but when I was young we always thought of them as wall rugs, mind you we would NEVER use them as floor rugs.
Using tapestries on walls is nothing new, it has been done for hudreds of years in Churches and in Castles.

Rolling Tapestry after use.

Rolling them up and storing them was easy and the church would bring them out for special and festive occassions. Castles used them as decoration and as an added bonus, the tapestries created an insulation against the stone cold walls.

Only the rich and famous could afford having tapestires as they were made by hand in the medieval days.

 

Can you imagine, in those times the sewing machine and sewing needle did not exist.  The people had to be creative. Today we have machinery and factories that can spit out these tapestries in no time at all, and it doesn’t cost you an arm and a leg or a whole years working salary.

Mythical Creatures
The Last Supper

Medieval tapestries with religious themes such as the famous Last Supepr and mythical creatures  have always been popular even to this day.
 
 


Beautiful landsca
Amazing details and colors

Landscape and nautre tapestries are also amazing works of art.  The bright colors are cheerful and will enhance any room’s atmosphere.

 

Tapestry hanging in the Living Room and the vestibule of the Vanderbilt Mansion

Very very old tapestries are extrememly valuable as time goes by because they show actual events that have taken place. Remember many people were uneducated and could not write, so pictures really are worth a thousand words.

These detailed works of art are very helpful because they can offer true and sometimes very rare information about a time long long ago.  Take for example the tapestry series on the War of Troy.  In Greek mythology, the Trojan War was waged against the city of Troy by the Achaeans after Paris of Troy took Helen from her husband Menelaus, the king of Sparta.   It is part of one of the most important sets of tapestry still surviving from the latter part of the 15th century

 

 


 

 

The lady and the Unico
Famous Battle of Hastings depicted in the Bayeux Tapestry

There are reports that “The Cluny Museum in Paris holds many original pieces of medieval wall tapestries.

 

 

Most of today’s reproductions have come from those original great masterpieces.Two very popular forms of tapestries is the Lady and the Unicorn series displaying myth and legend, and the other is the Bayeux tapestry depicting scenes of the famous Battle of Hastings.”

Your home would have an amazing historical charm element if you are able to hang a beautiful reproduction on your wall even if it is machine made. If you have an interest in art, you can also add German and Roman paintings and sculputres to your interior decor as an extra.
The wonderful thing about using this kind of wall decoration is that it never goes out of style. It has been over 500 years and yet the most beautiful palaces, estates, castles and homes still hang wall tapestries. It is truly a sight to behold.

 

Beautifully hung on a curtain rod
Nicely framed

 

Tapestries are big and heavy how do you hang them on a wall to begin with? You can use any kind of rigid curtain rod making sure that the brackets are solid and plentiful. You can also encase the tapestry in a frame with or without the glass. Again you need solid harware in the wall to support both the tapestry and the frame.

 

 

 

 

Other ideas to use on your walls would be wood paneling varnished, or painted.  Your walls can have faux stone added.  Or you can use both faux stone and wood panelling together. To get that authentic look, you can create a faux cracked stone wall on the top half of the wall and add wood paneling to the bottom half. For the faux stone, you can use styrofoam also called polystyrene or different veneer panels. There are many many choices.

 

         

For the Victorian or Gothic look, you can also go towards the wallpaper niche. Wallpaper is like the poor relative of the family, you know they are there, but you bypass them all the time. Well now wallpaper is slowly making a comeback. There are pros and cons to using wallpaper. For one it is fragile to handle while installing. On the other hand it is very easy to replace and the designs that exist on wallpaper are more than you can imagine.

         

Wallpaper has an effect on the atmosphere or the room and it can influence what furniture you decide to put in a room. Damask or brocade wallpaper is more in line with traditional Victorian Style. If you want a dramatic touch of elegance, try wallpaper that has a velvet texture or a bold pattern with rich colors of black, gold, burgundy.

Wall paper is just like tapestries, they can tell a story and you can see the evolution of time and fashion.  If you have a good eye for detail, looking at the wallpaper in soemone’s home can give you hints as to the owners of the home, who when where etc.
             

Paint is another big product that is used in creating the Victorian or Gothic medieval effect.  The colors used in those days were deep rich and dark reds, greens, golds, purples, oranges, burgundy and black which was used very sparingly because black was associated with death.

Choosing the color you want is only the starting point.  There is so much you can do on walls. If you don’t have the money to buy a castle, then buy the materials to create one. You are embarking on a wonderful adventure.   Let your walls bring your dreams and desires to reality.

Happy decorating.