ISSUE 3  |  Paints & Patterns

Escape to the Tropics: Leafy Handmade Wallpaper

March 15, 2016 6:00 AM

BY Margot Guralnick

Run by artists (and sisters) Amy and Noelle Mills, Paper Mills of Oakland, California, is an entirely handmade operation, specializing in wallpaper designs with nods to Matisse and Picasso. What’s more, it’s a green enterprise: Based in live/work lofts on the edge of East Oakland, the company sources local materials, uses water-based paints, and works with recycled renewable paper. We particularly like their floral patterns, which remind us of the Bloomsbury group’s painterly walls at Charleston.

Photography by Alexa Hotz for Remodelista.


Above: A trio of Paper Mills botanical designs by Amy and Noelle Mills, who are both printmakers. Says Amy: “Noelle and I studied art together and wanted to continue the dialogue.” They carve their patterns on huge sheets of rubber and hand-print their papers one block at a time on a very long table.


Above: Little Havana is one of Paper Mills’ most popular designs. It comes in seven color combinations as well as custom requests. All wallpaper is made to order; contact Paper Mills for samples and details.


Above: Olivia, a leafy pattern with a wide repeat, has hand-painted elements in the background.


Above: Pablo, a floral ode to Picasso, comes in five color “studies.” Paper Mills stands ready to adapt patterns to meet clients’ needs and also offers custom designs.

Eager to embrace pattern? Have a look at all our Wallpaper posts, including DIY: An Economical Wallpaper Alternative and DIY: Wallpaper Headboard.

N.B.: This post is an update; the original story ran on January 24, 2014, as part of our Paints & Patterns issue.