How to install your wallpaper
Believe it or not, wallpaper is easy to install yourself! It takes focus and the right tools, but it is incredibly satisfying to create an inspiring living space. Follow these 10 steps to successfully wallpaper any walls in your home.
1) Map out the room or wall.
This step is vital as it ensures you have enough wallpaper for the job, and so you are not left with small strips/ empty spots in the corners. Avoid installing strips that are 3” wide or less, as they will look unprofessional and messy.
How to map out your walls:
You can use tape measure or you can use the actual roll of wallpaper as a guide to lay out the room. Using the roll of paper is more ideal, as it shows the true width of paper you will be using. Line the end of the roll up with the corner where you plan to start, and make a pencil mark on the wall at the opposite end of the roll. Slide the roll across to the pencil mark, and make another pencil mark at the other end of the roll. Do this until you know where every seam of paper is going to be. You may decide to cut down the first or last panel, in order to avoid small strips of paper.
Where to start & how to keep it straight?
Never start right in the corner of the wall, as corners are never straight and will produce crooked wallpaper panels. Starting in the corner, measure out a vertical plumb line approx ¼ inch less than the width of your wall paper roll. This will be the start line for your first panel of wallpaper, working away from the corner.
If doing an entire room: To avoid a pattern mismatch in the middle of the room, start near the door and work your way around, back to the door. If you have patterned wallpaper, it is rare that the patterns will matching up perfectly with the first and last sheet of wallpaper. If you have to overlap or if there is a slight mismatch, this will occur at the least conspicuous place in the room.
Making sure you order enough wallpaper
For solid colour or simple patterned wallpaper:
Measure the square footage of each wall, and add totals together. Divide this number by the square footage of the roll you want to order. Always round up, to make sure you have enough. For example, if your total number of rolls is 5.93, rounding up to 7 rolls would be a safer choice.
For Patterned Wallpaper
Wallpaper with a pattern requires an extra step to estimate the number of pattern repeats for the wall height of your room. The higher the number of pattern repeats on a roll, the more wallpaper you will need, while the smaller the number, the less wallpaper you will need.
Find out how often the pattern repeats and then divide the height of the wall by the inches between the patterns. If you end up with a fraction, then round up. By rolling out the paper and marking (on the back with pencil, or using painter’s tape) every time the patterns repeats, you can figure out how many full panels of wall paper there will be in one roll (after cutting to fit patterns together).
Example: if you have a pattern that repeats every 18 inches, and your wall is 96-inch-high, then you will divide 96 by 18. That will yield 5.33 times the pattern is repeated, which you will then round up to 6 repeats.
Gather the right tools
• Drop Cloth
• Paste Brush or roller
• Knife or snap off blade
• Sponge & bucket of clean water
• Smoothing brush or plastic smoother
• Tape Measure
• 6-in inch Putty knife or straight edge
• A pencil
• Step stool
2) Prep the walls
Before you start with the wall preparation you must remove all electrical covers, smoke detectors and light fixtures. Check if there are imperfections on the wall, dents, holes. Apply wall joint compound with a putty knife to fill any holes, and let dry. After, sand it with sandpaper to remove smaller imperfections. Last step (important), cover the entire wall with “wall size”, a primer/sizing product. It will help the paper adhere to the wall and reduces the chance of the paper shrinking and bubbling. It also makes it easier to remove the paper when the time comes.
After cutting the panel length (leaving any extra on, which will cut off after it goes up on the wall), lay panel face down on a clean drop cloth. Using a high quality roller or wide brush, apply paste to the back of the panel. Before hanging, you must book the paper. This is the process of folding the paper it on itself. It allows time for the paste to activate and the paper to soften.
Tip: Cut multiple panels of paper and lay them side by side to ensure the patterns meet up, and the lengths are correct.
3) Putting Paper on the walls
Once the panel has been booked, apply the top half of the strip to the wall, matching the edge to your plumb line. Allow the wallpaper to slightly overlap the ceiling (this will be cut off afterwards). Slide the wallpaper into position, then press the paper into the wall with a smoothing brush. Be careful not to stretch the wallpaper while putting it in place. Moving down the panel, pushing out any air pockets, work from the center outward. Using your plastic smoother, make a gentle crease at the bottom, where the paper meets the baseboard. Wash off excess paste with a damp sponge and clean water.Roll every seam because it will keep the edges from curling. And roll every inches of your wall, but don’t press to hard or you will squeeze out to much adhesive.If you doing full room always overlap inside corners at least 1/8 in with wallpaper from the adjacent wall.