Toiling Under the Toile

August 27, 2012 | My Jottings

I don’t know why, but I love toile (pronounced twall) things. Michael and I had black and white toile wallpaper in the first home we owned together. Then when we moved to a bigger house 25 years later I mourned the loss of the toile, and had the same wallpaper hung in our new bedroom. I know. People either love toile or they hate it, and when our house was for sale last year, I learned from potential buyers’ comments that most did not care for it.

Now we are in a different house that is more modern than our other two homes, and I didn’t think I’d ever have toile anywhere again.

But I succumbed to the pressure of the persistant, whispering Toile Elves, and very soon we will have a bit of toile in our home again. I decided not to go with black and white again.

Here’s what’s going up on the walls of my little office, in just a few days.

I spend a fair amount of time in my office — have I mentioned that there’s a lot of paperwork with foster care? I think I have. So I’ll be toiling under the toile.

And I’m shocked at myself that I’m considering some curtains that don’t really match with the wallpaper. We have a large double sliding glass door in the room and some curtains would provide some privacy.

Pretend right now that you like toile wallpaper. What color curtain panels would you choose to complement this dark red and cream toile wallpaper you see above?

I was thinking cream, I was thinking taupe, I was thinking cardinal red velvet panels, I was thinking brown.

Then all of a sudden I was thinking something completely outside my regularly matchy-matchy box.

Very light aqua, also known sometimes as robin’s egg blue.

No! That wouldn’t go at all!

I’m going to try it anyway.


  1. Kay says:

    I knew you’d give in to toile! Hooray! ๐Ÿ™‚
    I’d love to have toile in my home, but as neither Alan or I are any good at wallpaper hanging, it would prove to be an expensive choice.

  2. Just Julie says:

    Your hooray makes me happy, Kay!! I’ll post pictures when it’s up. Have a wonderful week….

  3. Helen in Switzerland says:

    I’m a toile girl too! Love, love love it and I adore your wallpaper….but I don’t think I’d combine with blue – red would probably be my choice!

  4. Just Julie says:

    Do you have toile in your house Helen? I know it’s risky, and you’re a wise color person…. ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Kay says:
  6. Just Julie says:

    Wow Kay!! I really like the red and aqua together! If not for the price tag I might be considering it right now…. Thank you dear Kay…xxoo

  7. Sharon says:

    YES for aqua and red! Love it!

  8. Ember says:

    Oh, that colour combination (on the eBay pic) is the kind I think of as “old Beijing” – you can see those colours together a lot in pictures of Tibet too – a very deep greeny egg-blue, with a kind of ox-blood (or Chinese) red. Good combo!

    We had sage-green-on-cream toile wallpaper when I was a child, and I once had a beautiful heavy cotton duvet cover (snatched up at a jumble sale for 75p) in the colours you have chosen for your study.

    Toile for the toilet, too? No? How could one resist?

    I love toile. Good for visiting grandbabies to look at while falling asleep, too. x

  9. Just Julie says:

    I love the sage green on cream toile very much – I thought of choosing it as well. And you’re right, in our old house where the toile was in the bedroom, all kinds of stories could be imagined from the scenes. “Once upon a time, there was a man with a hat who had a donkey, and he met a woman on a swing who he liked very much. Pretty soon they got married and had children and lots of chickens, and then he started sitting on the edge of an old bridge and fishing all day while she carried water from the stream….” ๐Ÿ™‚ God bless your week Ember! xxoo

  10. Ganeida says:

    I think your colour choice will work so long as you choose your shades carefully. I’m not the wallpaper sort so perhaps I’m wrong….

  11. Just Julie says:

    Yes, Ganeida. I “see” in my mind just the right color, and it has to be slightly grey and slightly green, but not too much to take it away from being aqua. I know – I’m strange. We’ll see if I can find anything that suits. God bless you…. xxoo

  12. Kay says:

    I had to comment again, just to say that I loved Ember’s comment about the grandbabies looking at the toile while falling asleep. Looking at the ‘wallpaper’ on your blog makes me think of all the stories I could make up for little ones. As a child, I would have made up my own stories for myself looking at such beautiful pictures.

  13. Just Julie says:

    That doesn’t surprise me about you Kay, with your gift for words. You and Alan have a blessed week! xxoo

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