Removable Wall Decals: Not Your Grandma’s Wallpaper

Let’s talk wall finishings. Wallpaper dates back to the early 16th century and gained momentum throughout the victorian era in English churches and castles. I have vivid memories of wallpaper in the many old English Castles I visited as a child. There were ornate, vibrant colours that decorated every room, hallway and even adorned the smallest of bathrooms.

In the 20th century, wallpaper reached the height of its popularity in the 60s and 70s, and its prevalence slowly receded in the 80s. Wallpaper has never really gone entirely out of style, but most of my generation relates wallpaper to Grandma’s house, fancy restaurants, and movies made before 1990. Until now.

A more modern option is on the market now, too—the wall decal. There are pros and cons to both wall decal and wallpaper, and it might be worth looking into before you make your decision. Wallpapers tend to have a repeating pattern and can be notoriously hard to remove. If that’s not for you, consider using a wall decal instead. Wall decals can be bold, fun, abstract, or scenic, and they are highly customizable. It can be like having a floor-to-ceiling piece of fine art (without the expensive price tag). It captures a mood and creates a feeling that often takes you out of your living room, bedroom, or office and into a world outside of the four walls surrounding you.

Remember how difficult it used to be to remove old wallpaper? Not anymore! Wall decals are easily removable and can be stripped away from a wall without damaging the painted finish underneath. When our team here at Exhibit installs a wall decal, we bring a test swatch to ensure that the decal and the paint we’re covering up are compatible. Sometimes there are special coatings in paint that make it tricky to stick to, so we always find the correct material for the job. When we sold our house, the new buyers didn’t want the custom-designed and printed Alice in Wonderland wall decal we had in our young daughter’s room. As a part of the sale, we had to remove it and repair any damage to the wall. No problem and no damage! The wall decal peeled off easily, revealing a wall that looked as good as it did the day we had it painted two years prior.

Remember when the simplest way to change a room was to paint it a different colour? Wall decals give you more possibilities than a mere colour change. These versatile and durable finishings can create a multi-dimensional feel in a room, add texture to walls, mimic wood or metallic finishes or add custom typography to any space.

I love wall decals and the creativity they can inspire for otherwise lacklustre spaces. I am currently deciding on how to upgrade my office, and the most challenging part is choosing where I want the wall decal to take me; the beach, the mountains, the lake. The choices are endless. Knowing that they are an affordable option and that I can remove them without a fuss gives me comfort because I can change my mind later on. Perhaps I’ll have to make it a yearly upgrade.

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