Hanging Pre-Pasted Wallpaper
For some reason when people think about wallpaper they don't often give thought to what kind they are using. One of the most common types to hang, and arguably the easiest, is pre-pasted wallpaper. This type of wallpaper already has the paste applied to its back, and simply needs to be moist before you can hang it. Now, just because it is arguably the easiest, does not mean that hanging pre-pasted wallpaper is going to be a walk in the park. Here is what you need to do to get your walls looking perfect.
- Get materials. Before you begin, you need to make sure that you have all of the materials that you will need to properly hang your pre-pasted wallpaper. This means that you will need to get a wallpaper tray, seam roller, pen or pencil, carpenter's level, thumbtacks, soft sponge, scissors, utility knife, smoothing brush, and plastic sheets or drop cloths. This of course assumes that you have already purchased your wallpaper, and that you have prepped your walls for hanging the wallpaper.
- Plumb it. Begin by drawing a plumb line on your wall. This line is where you will start hanging the pre-pasted wallpaper, and will act as a guide to ensure that you make it as straight as possible. Do not rely on the corners of a room, since often a wall may tilt slightly, or become less than straight with time. Use a carpenter's level and a pen or pencil, and draw a line from the ceiling down.
- Soak it. Fill your wallpaper tray with halfway full with some lukewarm water. You don't want the water too hot, or you may end up melting the paste right off, and you need some slight heat to activate the paste. Roll the pre-pasted wallpaper loosely in the tray, with the pattern side in, and allow it to sit for about 1 minute. Some manufacturers have different times, so be sure that you read their directions before you begin, and that you follow them.
- Book it. After letting the pre-pasted wallpaper soak for about a minute, loosely fold the wallpaper together with the pasted side in. Do not crease the wallpaper, or press down on it too hard since this can damage, or cause the wallpaper to stick together more than you want it to. Let the pre-pasted wallpaper cure for about 10 minutes, or whatever the manufacturer recommends, before hanging it.
- Hang it. Once you have allowed your pre-pasted wallpaper to cure, it is time to begin hanging it. If you are doing this work by yourself then be sure that you have a few thumbtacks on hand to help you. Starting at the plumb line, place one corner of the pre-pasted wallpaper and a thumbtack. Gently roll down the rest of the wallpaper, following the plumb line as a guide. If necessary lay your hands against the wall, palms flat, and slide the wallpaper into place. Place a thumbtack in each corner to help prevent the wallpaper from "rolling-up."
- Smooth it. Once you have the strip of pre-pasted wallpaper hung, you need to go back over it with a smoothing brush to make sure that there are no air bubbles. Start in the middle of the strip and work outwards to ensure that you have removed all of the bubbles.
- Repeat, trim it, and roll it. Repeat steps 3, 4, 5, and 6 until you have completely covered all the walls in your room. As you are going around the room, trim any excess wallpaper as necessary. For example, try to make the wallpaper as flush to window sills, light switches, and electrical outlets as possible. Allow your wallpaper to sit for roughly 30 minutes, and then go over all the seams with a seam roller. Be sure that you do not press too hard, but this will help "fuse" the strips of pre-pasted wallpaper together.
- Clean it. After waiting for another hour, it is time to clean your wallpaper from any excess paste that may have seeped out. Use a slightly damp sponge, and go over the entire surface. The sponge needs to be slightly damp though, so that you do not get the wallpaper excessively wet, and pull it back down. As you are going around the room cleaning the wallpaper, remove the thumbtacks, and change your water every 3 or 4 strips.
Once you have finished cleaning, you are completely finished with hanging pre-pasted wallpaper. Congratulations, you now know some of the best tricks of the trade to get your wall paper looking like it has been hung by a professional.
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