This week I watched an old favorite film, Billy Elliot, and couldn't help but notice that both Billy's and his ballet instructor's homes brim with wallpapers. Every room in the Elliot house, in fact, is wallpapered, and in some cases, there are two wallpapers per room! The film is set in 1984 in a fictional town in North East England, but the wallpapers aren't all your traditional pink English roses: the kitchen is covered in a retro avocado fern pattern and a brown, yellow, and gray patchwork, while the hallway features an electric green/yellow and black floral. Plus, the trims of the room are painted to match the papers!
If you remember the film, Billy lives with his father and brother, both miners on strike, and his deteriorating grandmother. It's counterintuitive to see so much wallpaper in a house full of males since, as stylist Emily Henderson pointed out, "...wallpaper is inherently decorative, and decorating is inherently feminine." But in this case, the wallpaper is a pervasive reminder of Billy's late mother, who is clearly missed, and so she is both literally and figuratively the backdrop to the film. Much applause to the set decorator!
Check out all of the wallpapers in the film below. Do you think you could handle so much wallpaper in your home?