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The Petersen House, Ford’s Theatre, Washington, DC

I just finished working at the Petersen House in Washington DC. It was used as a boarding house in the Civil War. Today, more than 800,000 visitors walk through the Petersen House and Ford’s Theatre every year to see where Abraham Lincoln was assassinated and died.

The Petersen House is a great example of how the middle class decorated their homes during the Civil War era.  All the wallpaper in this historic home are historic reproductions. The fanciest wallpaper was always installed in the foyer and stairwell to impress visitors. The hallway paper is a copy of a French design and slightly old-fashioned for 1865. The parlors used American machine made wallpaper with a more homey feeling.

I really enjoy working on historic homes. It’s where the past becomes real for me.

I’m betting 2012, will be a great year for wallpaper.  You and your friends will consider using wallpaper to redecorate.  That’s what the recent Washington Post article written by Amanda Abrams says.  Wallpaper is en vogue and has undergone a revolution of sorts. Textured paper, bold designs, strong colors and affordability is making it hot with young Washingtonians.

But many homeowners have never had wallpaper professionally installed in their home. So my video here shows you, in about 2 minutes, how I install wallpaper.  A few months ago I installed historic wallpaper in the Dumbarton House in Georgetown.  It is a Federal period historic house museum dating from 1798.  Thanks to Scott Scholtz, the curator, who made this video of my work.

Thanksgiving leftovers – we don’t want good things to go to waste.

And that’s how I think about my leftovers. I don’t want the leftovers of the best wallpaper I’ve worked with this year to end up wasted. So I make decorative boxes.

Even the smallest scraps can make beautiful gifts. I make all kinds of useful boxes for hats, business cards, wine bottles, matches, even tissue roll covers. Think about how you can recycle your leftover wallpaper. It can be a great gift, even great wrapping paper.

The ones you see here in the video — they will be holiday gifts for my customers. A special thanks for working with me this year.