Grasscloth wallpaper looks amazing and can bring an earthy, peaceful feel in any room. It's the perfect blend of outdoors and sophistication. Over the past decade it has made tremendous gains in popularity, both in the residential and hospitality sector. However, not all grasscloth is the same. The following will help you distinguish between the the different choices you have to choose from.
There are two major types of grasscloth wallpaper:
- Natural sisal
- Faux vinyl
As you can probably tell from the description, one is the real thing and the other is meant to imitate the real thing. It's similar to real hardwood flooring vs laminate flooring. Not one kind is better than the other. It depends on your needs and tastes. There is a wide range of quality and cost with both options.
Real natural grasscloth is handwoven from real grass materials. Some grasses are more expensive than others and considered a luxury item like arrowroot, hemp, and jute. These types of wallcoverings are usually marketed to people with expensive tastes, with each pattern being given a highly exotic name to denote exclusivity. Grasscloth is one of the more expensive types of wallcoverings because it's very time intensive to produce.
An easy way to tell if a pattern is natural grasscloth is by looking at the width in the product specifications. This is a dead giveaway. Natural grasscloth will, 99.9% of the time with few exceptions, be 36 inches wide. If you see a grasscloth pattern that is not 36 inches wide then there is a good chance it is a faux pattern.
Faux grasscloth is meant to mimic natural grasscloth. Some patterns do a really good job of it, where you can barely tell it's not real natural grascloth, in both look and texture, and some look like a cheap imitation. The price per roll will determine how close you can get. For instance, Modern Rustic and Weathered Finishes, have several faux grasscloth patterns that look amazing. Warner Textures V and Textures & Weaves also have faux grasscloth patterns that look and feel amazing. But there are some cheaper collections that look decent but do not come close to looking like the real thing.
A big advantage of faux grasscloth wallpaper is the durability and upkeep. It's usually solid vinyl which means it can be easily installed, cleaned, and later removed. Natural sisals are much more difficult to install and easily damaged. One would definitely not recommend natural grasscloth for high traffic areas while vinyl faux grasscloth is a great choice.
Natural grasscloth has texture and an asymmetrical beauty that draws the eyes to admire the entire room instead of a small aspect (such as a repeating design). It is often handcrafted, giving a room a very elegant appearance, albeit one that comes at a high price. The grass fibers are built into the wallpaper, so that when you touch it, you can actually feel all of the different textures that make up the wallpaper.
Vinyl grasscloth is made by machines and lacks the texture of the natural grasscloth wallpaper, though they can come close. While it lacks some of the elegance of natural grasscloth, it is usually less expensive and considerably more durable. Manufacturers have even found ways to create the illusion of a natural grasscloth so that the only way to tell that it is vinyl is by touching the wallpaper.
Five Most Popular Grasscloth Wallpaper Designs
One of the primary attractions to grasscloth (besides the interesting texture) is the earthy tones and colors that make a room feel more natural. The following are the five most popular grasscloth colors and designs on the market.