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Dulux Academy launches wallpapering challenge

Published: 30 August 2019 - Fiona Garcia
Clockwise from top right: Dulux Academy
Clockwise from top right: Dulux Academy's Mark Rigby, Graham & Brown CEO Andrew Graham present 2018 winner Stuart Yates with his wallpaper

Ahead of International Wallpaper Week (October 7-13), Akzo Nobel’s Dulux Academy is giving decorators the opportunity to create their very own wallpaper before putting their application skills to the test. 

Now in its third year, the Dulux Academy Design and Decorate Challenge gives entrants a chance to see their design become a reality, with the winner receiving bespoke rolls of their paper created by Graham & Brown - as well as enjoying a personal guided factory and design studio tour at the firm’s headquarters in Lancashire. 

To take part, entrants need to post their design - on a 1m length standard 1200 grade lining paper - to Dulux Academy, compete with a short description explaining the inspiration and functionality behind their idea.

The shortlisted designs will then be shared for public vote on which will account for 50% of the design mark. Finalists will then be invited to attend the second part of the challenge, where their wallpapering skills will be put to the test at the flagship Dulux Academy at Akzo Nobel’s UK headquarters in Slough on Friday, October 11 during International Wallpaper Week. 

Their designs and skills will be scrutinised by an expert judging panel made up of representatives from Dulux Academy and Graham & Brown - including Dulux creative director Marianne Shillingford, who will be looking for stand-out designs with ‘wow factor’, that are balanced and would repeat well when hung. 

The winner will earn the title Dulux Academy Design and Decorate Winner 2019 based on both their personal flair for design and their practical application skills. They will be awarded the prize of seeing their paper made by Graham & Brown, as well as a luxury stay at the Dunkenhalgh Hotel and Spa and a Dulux Academy goody bag. 

Last year’s challenge was won by decorator Stuart Yates from Chesterfield,  who was presented with his unique rolls by Graham & Brown CEO Andrew Graham during his factory tour and was then commissioned to use his in-demand, award-winning paper to decorate the home of The Decorator magazine editor Catherine Saint.

Dulux Academy skills development consultant Mark Rigby said: “The Dulux Academy exists to raise standards in the industry and we are keen to support and build up decorators who continue to set the bar when it comes to the craftsmanship of the profession. Decorating is an expert job that requires professionals with dedication to deliver, which is something we are passionate about celebrating. 

“We created this competition to recognise the expertise and creativity decorators have when it comes to wallpapering - combining a flare for design and the skill of wallpaper hanging - and I’m looking forward to seeing this year’s entries.”



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