Liven up your public space with the best new patterned papers
Looking for modern living room wallpaper ideas? Give your living room an instant update with wall-to-wall texture, pattern and colour. Whether you go for a mural-style paper, a blown-up map of your neighbourhood, modern geometric pattern or full-on florals, wallpaper adds so much more depth and interest than paint. Eye-catching wallpapers also help to unify different living zones in an open-plan space. Theatrical papers often pay off, creating a striking focal point, while more muted textural papers help highlight a room’s other features – or create an interesting contrast by offsetting mid century modern or contemporary furniture against traditional designs. And who says wallpaper was just for your walls? Make a striking statement by wallpapering your fifth wall; the ceiling.
Here are some of the best living room wallpaper ideas…
A flamboyant parrot print wallpaper makes a statement in the living room of fashion designer Matthew Williamson.
Get the look: Arini wallpaper by Matthew Williamson at Osborne & Little. Candelabras from Sunbury Antiques Market at Kempton Park. Linen sofa from a dealer on the King’s Road. Red beaded cushions by Matthew Williamson. William Morris cushions from John Lewis. Rug from Lots Road Auctions. Bell jar with a light inside and porcelain poppies trailing from it – bought in a store in Rye. Ornate table bought in New York. Seventies chandelier, Indian ram head and perspex table found in New York. Seventies coffee table from Les Trois Garçons. Trift painted wood blocks by Judith Seng (judithseng.de). Oscar sofa in teal velvet from Sofa.com. On walls, Dove Tale by Farrow & Ball.
Here modern geometric wallpaper offers a chic contrast to traditional wood walls.
Get the look: Oak flooring, Cheville. Fire surround, made bespoke by a stone mason. Fireplace, Neville Stephens. This is an Arctic Pear chandelier by Ochre.
Marshmallow-like pouffes contrast with the sharper geometric backdrop in this room.
Get the look: The wallpaper is by Kelly Wearstler. The vintage console and pouffes are from Nihil Novi. The sunburst wall sculptures are by Curtis Jeré.
For tradition with a twist, you can’t go wrong with this Fornasetti wallpaper.
Get the look: This is the Fornasetti Riflesso wallpaper by Cole & Son. The Italian woven chair is from Geoffrey Hatty Applied Arts in Melbourne. Try 1stdibs. com for similar. The Stanley stool is from Jardan in Melbourne. Vitra does a similar stool. The shelf/drawer unit was designed by Melbourne architect Stephen Akehurst. Try Lago at Living Space for similar.
Wild dark florals create a cosy and cocooning space in this sultry living room.
Get the look:The rug is by Caravane. The floor is painted in Farrow & Ball’s Railings floor paint.
One side of this expansive loft space is covered entirely in this eye-catching ombré wallpaper. Proof that you don’t always have to fill a big wall with photos or artwork – choose a moody wallpaper to add a more nuanced sense of drama and texture to a space.
Get the look: The Ink Wall Mural wallpaper is by New York interiors specialist Brett Design. The Betwixt Bench is by Brooklyn-based designer Alex P White. The rug is from One Kings Lane, which has recently opened an interiors studio in SoHo.
This beautiful room is a clever mix of femininity, style and daring. The wallpaper is only featured in the alcoves, highlighting the property's original features. With pops of shocking pink and contemporary florals, it takes mix ‘n’ match to another level.
Get the look The floral wallpaper is Caprifoglio Ecru PDG676/02 from Designer’s Guild. The rabbit lampshades are by Moooi. The Hayward sofa in Leighton Natural FDG2341/10 is from Designer’s Guild.
This ornate wallpaper came with the property and was just too beautiful to lose, even though it errs towards a more traditional mood. The solution was to paint the other walls and ceiling in a pale green shade and add mid-century furniture for contrast.
Get the look: The wallpaper is hand-painted de Gournay. The Sixties Greaves & Thomas sofa bed is from Scottlorenzo.com. The Sixties side tables are by Max Sauze at Béton Brut.
A hand-painted mural, or mural-style wallpaper will instantly transform a wall into a canvas.
Get the look: The mural is by Frederick Wimsett. The artwork is by Mary Temperley.
The living room is a jewel of a space, mellow, with the gleam of gold, copper and crystal set against intense teal. A hand-painted Fromental wall covering combines gold and teal while period pieces add glamour.
Get the look: The blue and gold wall covering is Fromental. This Simplified Crillon leather chair is by Soane Britain and the velvet design is the Small Snooze chair by Ochre. The coffee table is from Carden Cunietti, which also made the bespoke bookcases. The central light and side table were sourced by Absolute Flowers & Home.
This mural was inspired by a book on Japanese kimonos. It's painted around a window and provides a lovely golden glow to the space. It's been purposefully distressed to create an aged, weathered look.
Get the look: The mural is by Ian Harper. The antique marble-topped table was brought back from the South of France. The Mercury vessels are from Myriad. The chair is a junk-shop find, reupholstered in Zebra velvet by Neisha Crosland at Turnell & Gigon. The chandelier was found at Lots Road Auctions.
This dark yet detailed wallpaper creates a cocooning, cosy space for unwinding in.
Get the look: The Moroccan rug is an antique Berber design. For a matching wallpaper, check out Lear Dark by Kristjana S Williams.
To prevent this dark palette feeling oppressive, layers of texture have been woven in, with plenty of reflective surfaces and luxe finishes. Even the ceilings feature bold wallpapers. The mirrored wall in the living room is actually a wallpaper. The light reflection adds another dimension.
Get the look: The Art Deco Ibex table lamps were bought in the US. This is Antique Mirror wallpaper from the Mariinsky Damask collection at Cole & Son. The sofas are upholstered in Rubelli velvet and faux- alligator-skin fabric from Altfield. The zebra-print fabric used for the cushion is by Abbott & Boyd.
Seventies disco diva meets Louis XV in a storm of pattern above the fireplace. The artist behind the painting likes to use patterned backgrounds in her collages, so the wallpaper was chosen to display the piece in the same spirit. Meawhile, the typically French flooring zips up the alcove walls in the living room.
Get the look: This Mickalene Thomas artwork is from Lehmann Maupin. The Rheinsberg wallpaper is by Designers Guild. The Louis XV fireplace was bought in France. The sculpture to the left of the fireplace, called Christmas Tree, is by Lionel Scoccimaro.
There’s an elegant formality to this wallpaper, subverted with tiger print and granny lamps, neon artwork and shaggy sheepskins, chandeliers and chintz, while shell-shaped seating brings Fifties elegance to the space. It’s an eclectic vintage look that’s taken to a new, more elegant level.
Get the look: The Oyster armchair and sofa, in the foreground; Fire Monkey armchair; Aroused Rose cushion, on the sofa; and Cheese Plant bolsters, on the armchair, are all by Sera of London. This is Tokai Rose wallpaper by Robert Kime. The floor lamp is from La Belle Étoffe in Frome.
This original fireplace, printed wallpaper, trailing plants and evocative artefacts give an eclectic, global feel.
Get the look: Find similar artwork at Yellow Korner. The photos of Africa are by Aernout Overbeeke. The poem is by Frieda Mulisch. The antique chest was found in Syria.
You can just about make out the graffiti wallpaper covering the wall on the right, adding lashings of fun.
Get the look: The Graffiti wallpaper is from Murals Wallpaper. The vintage Pepsi-Cola sign is from The Old Cinema. The bean bag is from BeanBagBazaar. The giant Lego storage box is from Store. This is the Star Wars Stormtrooper Battle Buddy figure from Tesco Direct.
Although technically a dining room, this show-stopping wallpaper would completely transform a living space too. The brave, show-stopping, floor-to-ceiling mural is from Tres Tintas, dramatically spanning the dining room wall from top to toe in five huge panels.
Get the look: The mural is from Tres Tintas in Barcelona. This is the 85 Lamps pendant by Droog. The table and bench are by Timothy Oulton. The chair is by Tom Dixon, covered in fabric from Roche Bobois.
A graphic artwork has been painted directly onto the wall, injecting colour and personality. The integrated futon is both comfy and space-efficient; it's made with a wood base, Ikea mattresses and layers of upholstered cushions.
Get the look: The mural is by Ricardo Cavolo. The futon cushions are covered in Berwick fabric by Prestigious Textiles at House Décor.
This turquoise-walled living room creates a calm yet vibrant and bright space.
Get the look: The stained-glass window is by Nikki Cass. This is an Elitis wall covering. Find the Glam Rock guinea-pig print cushion at Debenhams. The engineered-oak flooring is from The Natural Wood Floor Company.
The roaring fire and striking paintings are the main feature of this room, where the wallpaper offers a more muted backdrop.
Get the look: This is Drag DR 1216 wallpaper by Farrow & Ball. For a similar fire surround, check out Chesney’s.
This casual seating area at the bottom of the stairs gets an instant uplift with the modern tropical paper and hexagonal flooring.
Get the look: This is Merian Palm wallpaper by Timorous Beasties. Try Alexander & Pearl for a similar pendant light. Waterworks sells floor tiles like these. The chair is vintage – The Dormy House sells something similar.
This large wall was transformed by a mural of a silver birch forest, with a family portrait in the middle.
Get the look: The family portrait is by Dan Burn-Forti. The sideboard was found on eBay. This is a Stepevi rug.