Wallcovering Trends 2023: Victoria Sass of Prospect Refuge Weighs on How-To’s

Minneapolis designer Victoria Sass provides tips and tricks for incorporating wallcoverings into your home
Photo by Chris Mottalini

Along with industry color leaders proclaiming their versions of COTY (color of the year), other industries related to interiors love to weigh in on what’s hot and what’s not—and their purview includes wallcoverings. From remodeling websites to blogs by individual interior designers to lifestyle sites, there’s no dearth of forecasting on styles, colors, and prints for wallcoverings in 2023. Graphic prints, floral and nature-themed designs, metallics, maximalist prints, murals, and ombre are taking hold among the lists found online.

Even wallcovering companies love to do a bit of soothsaying. York Wallcoverings, the largest and oldest wallcovering producer in the U.S., recently announced its 2023 Color of the Year: Amber, “a golden hue praised for its warm, rich, and comforting tones,” according to York. “The color signifies a shift toward spaces that promote positive energy, as well as the continued rise of natural inspirations into today’s homes.”

So how, where, and why should you include wallcoverings in your home?—we asked Victoria Sass of Prospect Refuge Studio in Minneapolis. Here are her five pro tips:

  1. More than just walls: Consider papering unexpected places, such as cabinets or closets, for a whimsical touch. We papered the inside of a bar nook at our Gucci Kitchen project with a quirky dinosaur print by House of Hackney.

    Photo by Canary Grey

  2. More than just paper: We love to use fabrics on walls for a softer touch. You’ll have to go the extra step of having it professionally backed, but it’s worth the extra effort for a unique and cozy look. The entrance of our Triangle Park project features the tea-stained print of a Decors Barbares fabric leading up the walls, complete with a dainty tape trim.

    Photo by Chris Mottalini

  3. Murals: For another paper-like alternative that’s deeply customizable, consider a meaningful mural. We worked with local duo She She to create this one-of-a-kind painted powder ‘paper’ inspired by Monet’s water lilies for a Linden Hills home.

    Photo by Judith Marilyn

  4. Matchy-matchy: When you really love a print (and want to make a big impact) consider a wallpaper with coordinating fabric for an immersive pattern approach. On our Triangle Park project, we went big with a French pattern for walls and drapery—including a curtained bookcase.

    Photo by Chris Mottalini

  5. Atmospheric: Paper doesn’t always have to mean pattern. Give your space a moody vibe with subtle, gradient inspired color. Our Heritage Modern project featured an envelope of hand painted Japanese paper in rich plum shades for a dramatic powder bath.

    Photo by Canary Grey

First stop: Hygge & West, based in Hudson, Wisconsin, the perfect online shop for modern wallcoverings.

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