Hanging Wallpaper

Written by Lee Wyatt (last updated February 17, 2020)

Just about everyone has heard some story of just how difficult hanging wallpaper can be. While it can be a tad challenging for those who have never done it before, that doesn't mean it is impossible. As long as you are willing to follow these directions, and take your time, you can get the job done. After all, why should you automatically discount a viable decorating method due to fear?

  1. Choose your paper. Before you can begin hanging wallpaper you need to actually choose the wallpaper you will be using. When purchasing your wallpaper get a little more than you believe you will need to ensure you have enough incase an accident crops up. Typically it is a good idea to get an additional 10 to 15 percent of your base amount.
  2. Get the proper materials. When you have the wallpaper chosen, you can begin gathering the rest of your materials. Typically you will need wallpaper paste, a tape measure, paste brushes, pins, rags, a seam-roller, drop cloths, sponges, utility knife, putty knife, and even a smoothing brush or two. There are a few other tools that you can use, but these are the ones that you need.
  3. Prepare the work area. After you have purchased all your materials and tools, you can begin preparing the work area. Essentially this means that you remove as many items from the room you are working on as possible. What you can't remove need s to be moved towards the center of the room. Once you have done that, place drop cloths along the baseboards of the wall to help protect your flooring from excess paste and water.
  4. Prepare the walls. With the room prepared, you can begin preparing the wall. If you already have wallpaper on the wall this means that you will have to remove it. However, whether you have wallpaper hung already or not, you still need to remove any and all electrical plates, check and repair any cracks or holes, and so on. Further, you will want to clean the walls and allow them to dry before you begin hanging the wallpaper.
  5. Premeasure and cut. While your walls are drying from being cleaned, you can also begin getting ready for hanging the wallpaper. The easiest way to do this is by measuring and cutting wallpaper panels to your desired length. This will actually save a lot of frustration and effort when you begin hanging the wallpaper itself. Be sure that you measure and cut enough wallpaper to go around the entire room.
  6. Get some help. Before you begin hanging the wallpaper call a friend to help you out. While you can always do the work yourself, it is a good idea to have another person help out on the project. Having another individual can not only help hang the wallpaper, but ensure that the paper is smoothed out like it should, that all bubbles are removed, and that everything is as straight as possible.
  7. Go in one direction. Now that you are finally prepared and ready to go, you can begin hanging the wallpaper. To do this, pick one spot on the wall and start there. Take a piece of wallpaper, get the paste on the back of the paper moist (or apply paste if the paper is not pre-pasted), and then place it where you want it. When you do this start at either the top or bottom, and gently smooth the paper until it is completely on the wall. When you have it in the proper location, place a pin in the top corner of each panel. While you move onto the next panel have your helper remove any and all air bubbles in the paper. Repeat hanging and smoothing until you have finished hanging all your wallpaper.

After you have finished the task of hanging wallpaper you can begin the cleanup. What this means is that you have someone go around the baseboards and the ceiling joints and trim the overhanging wallpaper. Be as careful as possible while you are doing this so that you don't accidentally damage the rest of the wallpaper, and require you to do a bit of extra work. Finally, do not forget to wipe down the newly hung wallpaper to clean up any excess paste. Do not use a sopping wet sponge when you are doing this, and stick with just a damp one. If it is too wet then you may see the wallpaper falling off.

Author Bio

Lee Wyatt

Contributor of numerous Tips.Net articles, Lee Wyatt is quickly becoming a regular "Jack of all trades." He is currently an independent contractor specializing in writing and editing. Contact him today for all of your writing and editing needs! Click here to contact. ...


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