An exciting new arrival in the world of designer wallpaper, Bethan Gray is an established London-based furniture designer who recently launched her first wallpaper collection in collaboration with NLXL. Her designs have featured in a number of interior design magazines and her new wallpaper collection was recently referenced in Vogue Living Australia magazine to announce its arrival at Living Edges stores. Having exhibited at London, Paris, Milan and New York, Bethan is also the winner of a number of awards, including Best British Designer at the Elle Decoration British Design Awards 2013.
Bethan’s interesting cultural background can be seen to stunning effect in her wallpaper design NIZWA, which is influenced by the architecture of the region of Oman. Born in Cardiff, Wales, Bethan can trace her family back to an ancient Rajasthani clan and, subsequently, through centuries of migration West across Arabia and Persia to settle in the Celtic heartland of her childhood. With such rich heritage to draw upon, it’s no wonder that Bethan Gray designs have captured public imagination. Her signature style interweaves a series of seemingly dichotomous concepts. East meets West in a blending of craft traditions from across the globe and her designs seem to effortlessly mix simplicity with intricate details, light tones with dark. Likewise, she skillfully combines cutting edge technology and modern design techniques with a deep sense of the values of traditional craftsmanship, having worked with a number of craftspeople from around the world. Bethan’s interest in other cultures has led to her travelling to a number of countries and continents including India, Asia, Africa and South America to soak up the art and culture that inspire her designs.
NIZWA wallpaper beautifully demonstrates Bethan’s eye for detail and her attention to colour, pattern and form. It’s a perfect example of her unique style and shows huge skill and originality in the employment of marquetry, a technique traditionally used in wood cutting as far back as the 16th century. It is by using this technique that the pattern is imbued with iridescent mother-of-pearl to produce a wallpaper design that is quite simply stunning. While her design has a timeless quality, it would naturally fit well with current trends for global influence, pattern and opulent furnishings. This design exudes elegance, hinting at the majesty of ancient castles with its pattern of pearlescent castellations. Viewed another way, the pattern becomes a wall of shimmering fish scales in a choice of jade, amethyst or pearl.
Whatever your preference, a design like this can be used to express your personal tastes, your own cultural heritage, or as a nod to far-flung travels. It’s a design that one would be proud to have just about anywhere, but would look particularly elegant in a sophisticated hallway or luxurious bedroom. For ultimate opulence, team it with the current trend for a sparkling chandelier and you’ll be utterly en vogue.