I know better than to say, “Well, now I’ve seen it all!” But I sure was tempted recently. I was flown to Oahu by a couple of clients wanting consultations, and at the first condo there was something I had never seen nor imagined. The side wall in the living room looked like it was painted different shades of white and grey, with each panel of color about four feet wide.
I asked the client, “Why did you paint the wall all these different colors?” She said, “What do you mean?” I said, “The first section is pure white, and the next section is grey, and then there’s this other grey, and so on.” She said, “It’s all one color. It’s all white.” I said, “No, it’s not. Look…” (Here I was arguing with her about the color of a wall in her own home.) Her friend was there and he had helped her paint the wall and he said, “It’s all one color. The studs in the wall are not in a straight line so the drywall panels are all at slightly different angles.”
I was dumbfounded. It truly looked like the wall was painted about six different colors. The wall went to her Relationship Corner and that was the main thing she was wanting to work on. Repainting was not going to help at all—it had just been repainted.
The problem was that there was something fundamentally wrong, and I have to say, at least it didn’t take long to come up with a solution. I said, “Put a curtain over the entire wall. It’ll look lovely and romantic.” She started making excuses as to why that was going to be impractical, but her friend came to the rescue. He said, “There are fabric stores nearby and you can easily find a seamstress.” (I was appreciating him more and more.) I think I talked her into white silk.
She was afraid it would look odd, but it won’t. It would have looked odd if just part of the wall was covered but covering a whole wall with curtains is not all that uncommon in decorating. It’s something I often recommend when there’s a wall of sliding glass mirrored doors in a bedroom. I think that was why it didn’t take me long to suggest the curtains—I’ve suggested it before, but not for such an oddball situation!
Wall curtains are also a way to bring lots of color into a home that you don’t own. No need for a paintbrush, and you can take them with you when you move. With a breeze, the wall becomes kinetic art. Covering glass (doors or windows) with colored sheers can be problematic, but if there’s a solid wall behind the fabric, the light in the room won’t become tinted. (See my earlier post on why that’s a problem.)