Quick Change Artistry

Bring new life to your walls, without having to make a commitment.

By Kristin Belz January 15, 2013 Published in the January 2013 issue of Portland Monthly

Blik psychedelicflowers prjrdg
"Psychedelic Garden" Pattern Wall Tiles are actually among the most subdued of the Blik self-adhesive wall coverings line.

Say you want to make a change in your home decor, but you're a bit of a commitment-phobe. Blik has your back. They’re a ten-year-old Venice, CA company, started by an architect and a food writer, Scott Flora and Jerinne Neils. They design custom wall graphics but also sell an extensive collection of mostly bold and vibrant wall covering kits ready for you to apply at home. The Blik line creates a new option beyond paint and wall paper, and a way to make a visual, artistic statement without making a big artistic investment.

Blik's line of patterned wall tiles and decals are easy to apply but also to remove. One series, Blik Re-Stik, is even intended not only to be easily taken down but also repositioned, reapplied somewhere else, so you can redecorate to your heart's content.  The wall designs come in many themes and styles, created by many artists and designers. Most skew toward the young, fresh and irreverent. Video games like Atari and Nintendo and 1980s pop graffiti artist Keith Haring are all well-represented. Black and white line drawings evoke Japanese anime.

Humor is definitely a quality the Blik designers appreciate. For instance, wall tiles in a faux Louis Vuitton style brown and camel pattern that is actually Megan Lara's "geek chic" combo of Pi signs, dials, knobs and other vaguely dorky, scientific symbols. She first made the design as a t-shirt, for Threadless, the collective, crowd-sourced Chicago company that takes designs submitted by the public and lets its online community vote on which should be turned into t-shirts and other "canvases."

Another collaboration, with Bruce Mau Design, is for a create-your-own set of decals. Online, you pick from the "alphabet" of Mau-designed symbols, then alter the color, size and layout of them however you want. The interactive design app on the Blik website lets you see how your creation would look on a blank wall. It's fun to play with and not expensive to go ahead and turn play into reality for the walls of your  home. "Canvases" are 24" x 12" ($20) or 48" by 24" ($60).

Blik wrapped install rjrkr7
Installing a Charles Arnoldi/Wrapped set of Blik wall panels (this one is "Macro") is "a worthwhile challenge" on the difficulty scale, according to the company website.

The latest Blik collaboration is with the wrapping paper company co-founded by Ryland Arnoldi, whose artist father  Charles Arnoldi would wrap presents with butcher paper he’d had lying around his painting studio getting splattered on. The accidentally artful paper begat Wrapped, which now has teamed with Blik to let Arnoldi the elder's designs loose on the vinyl, adhesive-backed wall coverings. Macro (see photo) borrows part of the artist's 16' painting and lets you apply it where you wish.

In Portland, the Pearl District shop Posh Baby carries some Blik products, and indeed, many of the Blik patterns are a natural for children's rooms.

Filed under
Show Comments