How to Hang Wallpaper Successfully
Wallpaper is one of the best ways to add colour and life to any room in your home. Available in a huge variety of colours, textures, and styles, wallpaper can transform your space and is a great weekend project to tackle by yourself.
However, it is easy to make a mess of wallpapering your space if you do not follow the appropriate procedures. Learning how to do the job properly will allow you to carry out a successful wallpapering job that is clean, neat, and beautiful.
Tools You Will Need
When you’re installing wallpaper in your home, there are numerous decorating tools you will need for the job, including:
- Dust sheets
- Bucket of water
- Paper-hanging brush
- Pasting table
- Tape measure
- Plumb line or spirit level
- Wallpaper scissors
- Sugar soap
Buy the Wallpaper You Need
The first step in a successful wallpapering project is first determining how much wallpaper you need for each room. Take time to measure the height of each wall, from the floor to the ceiling, and the width of each wall with a measuring tape. It’s important to remember that when wallpapering a room, you need to match the patterns on the wall, so it is always best to buy extra.
Types of Wallpaper
Choosing the right type of wallpaper for your home can be difficult, after all there are many different materials and types to choose from. Some wallpaper types are more difficult to hang, while others are ideal for the first-time user.
One of the most common wallpaper types, vinyl wallpaper is easy to hand and remove. What’s more, vinyl wallpaper that is canvas-backed is resistant to moisture and versatile, making it ideal for hanging in bathrooms and basements.
This wallpaper type is generally textured and patterned, making it a popular choice for covering any imperfections in walls. What’s more, it is also extremely easy to paint over and is lined with adhesive so that it remains versatile for years to come.
One of the more difficult types of wallpaper to hang, textile-based wallpaper is much more time-consuming to hand in properties but also gives you more control over the final product. If you want a professional effect in your property that provides an impressive finish, textile-based wallpaper is the best option for you.
Prepare the Room
Before starting the long process of wallpapering the rooms in your home, it is important to remove all furniture and furnishings from the room and lay down dust sheets. Wallpapering can get messy and that last thing you want is a home covered in wallpaper cuttings, dust, and glue! So, prep each room beforehand so that you don’t have to deal with a lot of messy tidy-up later on.
Prepare the Walls for Wallpaper
Once you’ve chosen the wallpaper you want for your home, it is time to start prepping the walls. Start by turning off all the electricity in your property and remove the wall plates with a screwdriver. This helps protect both the outlets and you, allowing for a safe and clean-looking paper installation.
Remove Old Wallpaper
Before applying new wallpaper to the walls in your home, it is important to remove all the old wallpaper first. Use a putty knife to strip sections of wallpaper from the walls. It is important you remove all of the old wallpaper and scrape away any adhesive that remains underneath to ensure a smooth finish. Removing old wallpaper is the task that takes the longest, so ensure you leave plenty of time for this task. If the wallpaper in your property is very old, it may be best to use a steamer to help remove it effectively.
Clean the Walls Thoroughly
For a professional finish, take the time to clean your walls thoroughly. This will help remove any mildew, remaining wallpaper, and dust from your walls that may interrupt the smoothness of your newly papered walls. During the cleaning process, it is also important to take note of any cracks in the walls. While you’ve got the chance, now is the time to apply filler to the walls to fill any cracks or holes in the wall, before waiting for it to dry. Finish by sanding it smooth with a fine-grit sandpaper.
Prime the Walls with Primer
Paint primer onto the smooth walls with even strokes of a brush before hanging the wallpaper. Primer will help the wallpaper stick to the walls more effectively, providing a solid foundation for your wallpaper to stick to.
Draw Out Guidelines
Drawing guidelines on the wall before commencing hanging the wallpaper is extremely important. Marking out the guidelines helps you hang wallpaper correctly and gives you a point to start from.
Cut the Wallpaper Longer than the Wall
When cutting the wallpaper for application, always cut it longer than the wall. Apply wallpaper paste to the back of the paper and line up the paper with the guidelines you drew on the wall. Always begin by hanging wallpaper from the top of the ceiling, leaving about 2 inches hanging over the top and below the floor. Carefully line the wallpaper up with the guidelines to then press it firmly into the wall to secure it.
Cut Patterned Wallpaper to Size
If your wallpaper is patterned, unroll it pattern-side down onto the paste table so that you can cut it easily. Next, use a ruler or spirit level to draw a straight line at the length you measured and then cut the paper across. Turn the length over, unroll the next length and place it edge to edge with the first so that the pattern matches and line up properly. Follow this technique for each piece of wallpaper you cut and be sure to number each section on the back so that you know which order to hang the paper in.
Hang the Wallpaper
Now, you’re ready to start hanging the wallpaper. Start by laying the first section of wallpaper pattern side down on the paste table so that the bottom section hangs down onto the floor. Load up your pasting brush with paste and wipe off any excess on the side of the tub.
Apply the paste to the centre of the paper and then work out to the edges. Once the section of paper covering the table has been thoroughly pasted, fold it over on itself and continue pasting until the whole strip is pasted. Position the pasted length at the top of the wall. Always ensure that about 5cm of excess wallpaper is left above the top of the wall to allow for trimming.
Trim the Edges
Next, with the wallpaper applied, crease the top and bottom of the wallpaper against the ceiling and skirting-board junctions. Gently pull the paper away from the wall and cut along the creases using scissors. Then, brush the trimmed edges back into place.
Continue Hanging the Lengths of Wallpaper
Fit the next length of wallpaper against the first one, ensuring the patterns line up accurately. Once you have two or three lengths of wallpaper in place, use a seam roller to flatten the joins so that it looks like one flawless wall of patterned wallpaper without any joins.
Use a Wallpaper Brush
To wallpaper a room properly, you need to eliminate as many wrinkles from the wallpaper as you can. If you do not, the surface of the wallpaper will look uneven and covered in bubbles. Smooth the paper surface out with a wallpaper brush, using enough force to clear out the bubbles and smooth the edge of the paper. If you create any wrinkles accidentally, carefully pull the wallpaper away from the wall until you reach the location of the wrinkle and then press it out slowly.
How to Paper around Light Switches or Sockets
This can be a tricky job and, if not done properly, can look very messy. So, be sure to follow our guidelines so that your wallpaper can look neat and tidy even around plug sockets and light switches!
- Make sure the electricity is off and hang the wallpaper as we’ve already instructed above, using the brush to make slight impressions on the paper.
- Holding the wallpaper over the fitting, make a small pencil mark from each corner into the centre of the switch or socket. Pierce a hole at the centre point and, using scissors, cut along the lines you drew.
- Trim each triangle just inside the outer edge of the switch or socket. Partially unscrew the faceplate and pull it away from the wall so that you can use the brush to tuck in the trimmed edges. Then, screw the faceplate back into place and let the past dry before switching the power back on.
Clean Up the Wallpaper Seams
Once you’ve hung the wallpaper in your home, it is important you leave the wallpaper to set for at least 15 minutes. After it has been left to set, you need to wipe off the excess glue with a wet sponge. This will ensure you do not have any unsightly glue damaging the aesthetics of your wallpaper.
Hire the Tools for the Job
For a professional finish on your walls, you need the right tools for the job. Contact our team today and we can supply all the tools you need to wallpaper the rooms in your home effectively. After our tips on how to wallpaper your home successfully, you can enjoy a professional finish and see for yourself how wallpaper transforms your space, adding light and colour into your home.