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Measure & Hang Wallpaper


Measure & Hang Wallpaper

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Wallpaper: it’s back in a big way (was it ever really gone, though?), and we know if you’re like us, you can’t wait to add some wallpaper to your favorite spaces! We also know that installing it can be a daunting task. We highly recommend professional installation for best results; but if you’re a DIY’er, here’s a step-by-step installation guide.

First up, choose your wallpaper.

After picking your favorite wallpaper design and where you want to hang it, you’ll need to determine where to hang your first strip of wallpaper. Here are some helpful tips:

• For a statement wall, start by placing the center of the first piece (or the design) in the center of the wall and work your way out.

• For a room with a focal point, such as a fireplace, start by placing the center of the first piece (or design) at the center of the focal point and work your way out.

• When wallpapering an entire room, start with the first wall you see when you enter the space, the wall across from the entrance. The goal is to have any unpattern matched areas near the entrance, hopefully behind the door to the room where they will go unnoticed.

• If the paper has a pattern, consider where to place the design so that important elements will not be lost while trimming.

Next is determining how much paper you’ll need for your space.

Here’s how, step-by-step:


• Step 1: Check the measurements of your desired wallpaper. You’ll need to know how wide and how long each roll is.

• Step 2: Measure the width of all walls you will be papering and divide the distance by the width of the paper. This is the number of strips you will need to paper your walls.

How Much Paper

• Step 3: Measure the height of the room, and add 4 inches to this measurement for trimming purposes. Next, divide the length of the roll by the height of the room (+ the 4 inches) and this will tell you how many strips of paper you’ll get from one roll.

• Step 4: Divide the number of strips needed for the room (determined in step 2) by the number of strips per roll (determined in step 3) and that will be the number of rolls needed.

Please keep in mind, this method of measuring will work for random match wallpapers but you may need extra material if you’re using a required pattern match.

Time to Prepare Your Space

Figured out how much paper you need? Time to prepare your space:

• Step 1: Remove everything from the walls and move all furniture out of or into the center of the room you are papering.

• Step 2: Avoid any mess by covering furniture and floors with dust cloths.

Prep Your Space

• Step 3: Make sure walls are smooth and even. Remove any old wallpaper and fill, smooth, and sand and holes or cracks. Prime bare drywall and any small repairs.

• Step 4: After any repairs are completed, prime walls with a wallcovering primer. We recommend Shieldz brand or its equivalent.

Prep Your Space

• Step 5: Have a 6- foot-long table available and tools (listed) gathered.

• Step 6: Draw a plumb line just next to where you will place your first piece of paper. This will help you ensure your first strip is hung straight.

Now it’s time to prepare your paper!

Let’s get started:

• Step 1: Unroll paper the length of your table with the pattern side down. You may stack several pieces or work with just one, but do not cut more than one roll initially.

• Step 2: Pour the adhesive into a pail or roller tray. Using a brush or roller, paste the middle of the strip. Then, paste the edges with a sideways motion rolling off the edge.

Prep Your Paper

• Step 3: Lightly fold over the top of the strip and paste the bottom in the same manner. This process is called booking.

• Step 4: Set the booked strip aside to relax. Your instructions will usually tell you how long it should be set aside for.

• Step 5: Clean your table for the next strip. Make sure that moisture on the table will not affect the surface of the paper (please note: this would be included in your printed wallpaper instructions). If that is the case, make sure the table is wiped dry before laying out the next strip.

Next up: hanging the paper.

Here’s how it works:

• Step 1: Unfold top of strip and place it on your plumb line, making sure you have enough paper to trim the top. If there is a pattern match, ensure you are lining up your design.

• Step 2: When you are satisfied that the alignment is good, sweep the middle of the strip, working out to the edges.

• Step 3: Open the strip and sweep the bottom in the same manner, lining the edge up with your plumb line.

Hang the Paper

• Step 4: Trim paper top and bottom using a straightedge and razor knife.

• Step 5: Clean up any adhesive residue on the wall, ceiling or woodwork.

• Step 6: Lightly roll the seams and edges if your instructions say it is allowed. Please keep in mind that a light touch here is best.

• Step 7: Proceed to the next strip and follow the same procedure from above.

Hang the Paper

Any Questions?

We spoke to an expert installer, Howard Hamm, for his tips on measuring, prepping your walls for wallpaper, and more.

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