A wallpapered room has a rich, distinctive look-but hanging wallpaper can be an intense, painstaking job. You can add some of the texture and patterns of wallpaper to any room-without going the whole nine yards-just by adding a wallpaper border.
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Border strips, which come in a variety of widths, were once used almost exclusively at the top of a room (where a wallpapered wall met the ceiling) to finish off the look and hide any goofs at the top of the wallpaper. But there's no reason you can't add a border alone at the top of a painted wall to add visual interest. A colorful pattern raises the eye, making a room appear larger than it is. If you have very high ceilings, you may want to place the border a few inches below the ceiling to bring the eye down a bit.
Running a border around the room as a chair rail is also a nice decorating idea. It allows you to paint the lower half of the walls a different color than the top. Or wallpaper just the bottom of the walls. Don't stop there: Wallpaper borders can be used to create picture frame molding effects on large walls, to accent a soffit or a dormer, even to make a kitchen island a real standout. You can completely frame a door or window, accent your fireplace, or come up with your own original ideas for using wallpaper borders.
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