Design Field Notes

Design Field Notes

Design Field Notes


Trends & Finds

French Wall Paneling with Greg Natale

After an inspiring Uocmas Design School Speaker Series session with renowned interior designer Greg Natale, I have been fixated on finding out more about the French style wall paneling finish he uses so beautifully in his schemes.

So I put my questions to the man himself:

You use French Paneling to accent many of your interiors – why? We use it especially when we do white walls, as white walls can look bland.  We also use it when we want to create a contrast in a room.  It adds another layer to the wall, which gives depth to the space and adds interest.

A decadent finish used across Europe in the 1800s, why do you think it is relevant today? We are in the age of layering again, plain flat walls look can be cold and adding beautiful paneling instantly creates warmth.   

What do you style it back with to ensure it feels current? Contemporary furniture and clean colours like black and white.

Does it limit what you can place on the walls – ie. mirrors or artwork?  No not really, artwork and mirrors can sit in the paneling comfortably in almost all cases.  In some instances the moulding can help to frame and anchor wall decorations.

If I wanted to detail my walls with French style paneling, what’s the main thing I need to consider? The space around the moulding is very important.  The moulding should relate carefully to doors and windows in the room – it’s important to get this ratio right.


Beth F