Finding the right wallpaper is kinda like finding the right friend.
You have to pick carefully as both can change your mood in an instant.
Installing it takes time, effort and mess. It will stain your mind with certain beliefs in magnificent or unflattering ways.
And even has the power to change your mind about the colour orange, from confusion to delusion to a lifelong love-affair.
It’s a big decision either way as once they’ve been installed, you have to look at that choice, most days out of the week.
So pick wisely, I tell myself. And as MY queen Rue Paul often says, don’t funk it up **Cue disco music.**
But in all seriousness, colours actually do pack quite the punch on how we feel, possibly moreso than we first think.
For instance, black and white apparently help a child’s memory recall and attention span- despite looking terribly stark for a nursery. While many tech companies rely on the colour blue in their logo, as it conveys a sense of intelligence, dependability and trust.
Colourology in fashion is very interesting and some people make a whole career out of it. To ‘have your colours done’ is to have someone tell you which cool or warm colours compliment your complexion and which will wash you out.
My grandma thinks butterflies are her complementary colour and if anyone said anything bad about them she would throw her cat, The Duke at you.
In the wider world, Vogue did an article on Kendall Jenner, and her choice to use a certain shade of pink in her kitchen ( Baker Miller Pink ) which has been scientifically proven to calm and suppress appetite.
Even my friend’s Labrador wouldn’t stop throwing up his food after they painted their kitchen yellow. So my friends visited the vet, who them to paint it back to grey and suddenly… the dog was fine.
Since I had recently moved into a new room, I decided I needed to celebrate the occasion. White is no longer shall be! Hopefully one day soon I will wake up to it with a full face of yellow or a light powdery blue.
White for example is suppose to be communicate fresh, clean vibes while neutrals are the staple to every interiors designer’s diet. They complement and calm wild bursts of colour.
Red is obviously passionate but can be disastrous in large amounts. Yellow is pleasant and positive when used purposefully, but used on say a theme wall, it has been proven to trigger rage.
I packed all these things in mind, on a lunchtime walk to the wallpaper shop. We happened to spot this one a few days ago- my flatmate, me and the three dogs.
Inside, I found some white flowers by Van Gogh in these messy knots, some moroccan buttery yellows and terracotta tiles, Day of the Dead floral arrangements in passionate pinks and oranges…. Books on books on books of designs and murals and patterns and tones. Somehow everything after a while looked chaotic and fluid yet intricate, blossoming more and more ideas in my head for what I should pick.
So I left the wallpaper shop with two favourites in mind; one was an arrangement of fans in light blue watercolour. Very Japanese, very traditional with intricate cranes, cherry blossoms and roses highlighted in gold.
And the other was a classic William Morris romantic apperation. With swirling vines that never end and wildlife peppered around the edges. The colour was a saturating bright blue, bringing the beloved print from 1900’s English countryside to modern day instagram filters and techno.
My flatmate who came with me for the walk really liked the fans, but I wasn’t sure.
I just wanted something light that I could look at and be excited to start my day with.
Although I liked the seductive fans, they didn’t really suit my vibe, that was unless I was about to undertake in a whole lot of casual sex and cigar smoking. Which I think is the opposite to my morning routine of exercise and long-black fasting….
Thus, I was in two minds.
On top of that I was feeling rather guilty.
I was meant to call my friend at 8:30pm last night and texted her to do so, however I ended up unexpectedly drinking more wine than anticipated, and the next thing I knew I had this deep red urge to write.
And so I did, with twenty minutes to spare before the call. However… by the time I was thrown from the sugary flow it was 10pm.
No message from my friend, and suddenly my stomach was begging for food and the sensation of floating. So I thought I would feed her a yogurt cup in the bath to save time.
When I finally called my friend, it was near to 11pm and the bath looked like one of those instagram posts with the floating fruit but more DIY, without a ring-light.
I texted her the next day to apologise.
“ Sorry girl I totally forgot! “ The lie already sent before I could think about it.
“ Call tomorrow?“
As I started at the text I had just sent, I began to question myself.
Why did it feel harder to be honest? I could’ve just told her the truth. But I felt it better, easier not to.
Her text back sounded a little disappointed, with a smiley face at the end. Which only made me feel worst.
I hated lying but I felt like I was doing it more and more since becoming an adult.
It’s like lying to adults was as important a habit as paying a water bill or getting take out on a Friday night. And no, I don’t mean big lies, I mean white lies. The polite ones that make you seem a little less shit as a human.
But the thing was I hated it. Of late, whenever I said one I felt myself disassociating, like I had done not just me but the other person a disservice. Because, when you really thought about it, lying at it’s core was about distorting reality and offering credibility when you don’t deserve it.
This idea then led me to think about, why it just too easy to lie.
Was it about not being able to say no in the moment?
Was it about disappointing people?
Or was it about appearing perfect and gracious?
I wondered if I could stop lying for a month, would my conscience feel lighter… Would not lying benefit my life or would it just lead me to having no friends and on the short track to unemployment.
And say what I’m saying is correct- and all adults lie, then is society built on polite liars? Lawyers and politicians would make a strong case for, but I guess what I’m really getting to is, if right and wrong is black and white, then are little white lies part of the grey? And when does the grey grow and grow and consume how we see right and wrong?
When do white lies stop being polite and become the foundation of who we are not?
I remember when I was first taught lying was the right, polite thing to do- I was 7 years old. My family was invited to a Christmas party by my dad’s colleague.
There were 20 kids all nestled out the back. One girl was older and incredibly loud. I remember watching her making this whole show of herself iin front of the boys in a way you just couldn’t ignore. I must have rolled my eyes a few times without knowing as she ended up strolling over to me, with everyone’s eyes on her and asked,
“ You really don’t like me do you?”
And honest me said, “ No. I don’t.”
I don’t really remember what happened after that but I do remember being in the car on the way home and my parents scolding me.
“ You’re so stupid Holl, you don’t say that.” My brother, who was there said.
“But she asked me?”
“ Yes, but now we probably won’t be asked back for another party. ” My mother said, from the front.
“So lying to people’s faces, gets you invited back to parties?” I asked.
“You don’t have to lie – just be diplomatic. Say it with your eyes next time. Not your mouth.” My mother replied.
“So stupid Hol.”
And my mum was right, we weren’t asked back.
But idk, I think it’s worth trying to unwire my brain a little and maybe next time I go to lie, consider telling the truth first.
Pause and think, don’t just say the first, easiest thing to say. Fight the habit, fight the uncomfortableness, and maybe just say the untidy, stupid truth.
Perhaps, take a page out of Gloria Steinem’s book- “The truth will set you free, but first it’ll piss you off.”-
*****Me attempting to be truthful*****
“Sorry I didn’t call when I said I would. I didn’t really feel like talking to anyone that day or today really. Idk why. But I still love you, okay bye.”
“Sorry Erin I won’t be coming to your housewarming as I simply don’t want to go. Thank you for inviting me though, that was nice.”
“No I don’t like your gf Mark. She’s actually a class A cow and so no, she will not be joining us on my birthday boat cruise, I’m not sad at all to say. You won’t come to my party now too? Okay, sick. “
“No *** customer at my work *****, I don’t think a drunk woman is the worst thing you can be. I think a 62-year-old judgmental man judging women when he’s on a date himself, is. More wine asswhole?”
“No I don’t want to hear about your sex life as I’m on shift and I just don’t. Actually I don’t think a lot of people would, other than your mother and a paid therapist. “
“Can you stay on for another hour please love? “
“No. Sorry my feet ache and I’ve been here for 9 fucking hours with a 15 min food break which is highly illegal, just in case you forgot.
Also I’d like my tips before you pocket them.”
“Yes flatmate, of course I want take out but no I won’t be getting any tonight as I’m poor.”
“Sorry I was late to work, I didn’t really want to come but then I thought about feeding my dog and also this very expensive wallpaper so wooOoO here I am.
It has fans on it you know.”