Homeowners need art and engineering knowledge to decorate their homes nicely. A top-quality installation requires a carefully prepared substrate and attention to each room’s topography.
Step 1: Overview of hanging wallpaper
Some people prefer dark grey wallpaper; some people want bright colors. But, most American wallpapers are vinyl-backed paper. These are simpler to work with than tear-prone plain paper and arrive pre-pasted, removing the need for starch-based adhesives. Vinyl-to-vinyl adhesive is required for cutting and bonding.
Step 2: Layout the room
Center wallpaper with a vital element on the “focal wall” Mark the wall’s width and height midway. Wallpaper strip cut. Put the prominent element midway. Mark the wall at the strip’s leading edge. Draw a plumb line using a 4-foot level.
To estimate seam locations, put two extra small pieces of paper on the wall. Mark each edge. Continue marking, removing, and reapplying strips. Check wall height using a plumb line. First, cut a full-length strip with enough overhang to situate the prominent element at halfway. If choosing solid-color wallpaper, leave 1 inch at the top and bottom.
Step 3: Paper Preparation
If The first strip should be positioned facedown on a 6-foot work surface and coated with thick, even paste around the edge. To activate the glue, fold both ends of the strip into the center without creasing the paper. This is called “booking.”
Align the paper’s edges so no pasted surface shows. 3–5 minutes before hanging. For the pre-pasted piece, roll a strip with the sticky side out and soak it in the cold to lukewarm water until it’s sufficiently saturated (but no longer)—3 to 5 minutes for the above paper.
Step 4: First Strip
Unfold and apply the top half of the booked strip, matching one edge only with a plumb line from Step 2. 1-inch overlap ceiling for solid paper. The primary design feature should be centered on the wall’s middle.
Smooth the paper edges with a moist sponge, then brush from the center to the edges. Next, pull a smoother over the paper to remove wrinkles and secure it to the wall. Fold the lower strip. Align and smooth, overlapping the baseboard as required.
Step 5: Trim Ceiling Strip
Trim extra paper with a razor knife positioned near the wall. A 6-inch putty knife prevents tearing. Wet a sponge and gently wipe glue from the paper’s face. Woodwork and ceiling should be sponge-cleaned. Measure, cut, and hang each succeeding strip to line the pattern and butt seams neatly with no overlaps.
Step 6: Wallpaper Corners
Level a dry strip and cut the edge that will meet the corner. The just-cut paper edge should reach onto the adjacent wall. Align the patterns by overlapping the next strip’s border in the corner. Mark and plumb the leading edge. Hang this strip using the guideline. Outside corners require a 14-inch overlap. Next, overlap the strip but stop short of the corner. This prevents paper from peeling if touched.
Step 7: Window and Door Trim
When putting paper near windows and doors, overlap the trim. Cut diagonally from the paper’s waste edge to the little corners to flatten it. Cut the overlap. Smooth the form, then use a smoother to press it onto the casing, ceiling, and baseboard. Remove overlap.
Step 8: Trim Window Apron
To trim a window stool and apron, make shortcuts from the strip’s waste edge to the wall-stool corner. These slender paper fingers mold the ribbon to the casing. Hold the paper on the wall using a narrow putty knife, then use a razor knife to cut away any excess.
Step 9: Headers and footers
Headers, footers, or the paper above and below windows and doors, must be measured, cut, and book as you go. Align every strip’s leading edge with a periscope level to maintain its plumb. Hang, smooth, and trim headers and footers without going past the window or door casing.
Then, hang a full-length strip of paper along the window or door by butting one edge against the last header or footer and noting its opposite edge. Draw a level line from that mark to the ceiling. Adjust the full-length strip as required to fit the patterns. Cutting away any excess overlap and sponging and smoothing each component to a uniform finish as Step 4 completes the assembly.