No one starts off applying wallpaper perfectly. It involves a more complicated technique than painting with brushes and rollers, and any mistakes become permanent. If you paint a wall wrong, you can always paint over the problem. It’s harder to hide air bubbles in wallpaper.
While wallpapering is tricky at first, you can do it yourself. Following these wallpaper tips, you can get that professional look without hiring a professional.
Prepping the Room
Before you start applying the wallpaper, decide where each of your wallpaper strips will go. Using a measuring tape, work your way around the room and draw a line to mark where each strip ends.
Measuring and marking the wall will also help you determine how much wallpaper you need to buy. Multiplying how many strips you need by the height of your room will give you an approximate amount. It’s better have some left over than to not have enough, so buy around 15 to 20 percent more than your calculations say.
Finally, remove all fixtures like light switch covers and heating vents and fill any gaps you have with non-shrinking joint compound. You want the wall to have as few imperfections as possible when you start wallpapering.
Prime the Walls
Prime your walls using a wall sizing product. This product will make the walls smooth and slippery. This might sound like the opposite of what you need when sticking on wallpaper, but it helps you move the wallpaper around. You’ll rarely apply it straight the first time, so having the freedom to adjust means a lower chance of imperfection in the finished product.
This movability is particularly important when applying wallpaper to drywall. Without proper priming, you can’t get the wallpaper off if you decide to redecorate later.
Applying the Paste
Always apply the paste to the paper, not to the wall. Don’t be tempted to paint the walls with paste and stick on the wallpaper. It might seem more efficient at first, but you’ll create more work for yourself when it dries and ruins your priming.
Find a flat surface—preferably a worktable—and apply the paste using a paint roller. This technique gives you a more even spread than a paintbrush and speeds up the process. Check your wallpaper to find out which type of paste to buy.
You then want to book the paper. After you’ve applied the paste, fold the paper back on itself to soften it.
Where to Start
If you have chosen a wallpaper with a repeating pattern, it is likely that wherever it ends, the patterns won’t match. There is no perfect way to resolve this, so your best option is to start and end in the least conspicuous spot.
If you know that you plan to put a cupboard or another large piece of furniture in a particular spot, start there. Still, consider that you may want to rearrange your furniture at some point. To keep your options open, you may want to start around or above a door.
If wallpapering your home makes you nervous, don’t worry. With these wallpaper tips, you can avoid beginners’ mistakes and make anyone think you knew what you were doing from the start.