How to Hang New Wallpaper
Tools Needed to Hang New Wallpaper
The materials needed to hang new wallpaper are pretty simple. You need:
Step 1: Prepare the walls.
Remove old wallpaper first. Patch and smooth walls. Cover with a coat of Wall Size primer; it will improve adhesion of the wallpaper. NEVER apply wallpaper directly to drywall. You will not be able to remove it without destroying the drywall.
Next, set your plumb line for the first piece you will hang. Measure the width of the paper from the interior corner where you will start, accounting for at least 1/8” overlap in the corner. (Do not assume your corner is straight!) Mark the line and then either snap the chalk line or using a straight edge and a level draw the line straight down the wall. It’s absolutely essential this line is straight! Then do the same for the other wall from the same corner you’re starting from.
If you’d like additional guides, you can set or draw a plumb line for each piece of wallpaper you will hang.
It’s also recommended to start in the corner least noticed by someone walking into the room. Why? The pattern rarely matches in both the final seam and the corner. While a pattern difference in an inside corner is rarely noticeable, starting in a more hidden corner makes it virtually invisible.
Step 2: Cut your pieces.
Measure your pieces, adding 4 inches to the length of the space. Cut all full-size pieces. Make your cut with a single stroke across the wallpaper. As you’ll be trimming this section off anyway, don’t worry about perfection.
Don’t worry about pieces that will go over windows, outlets or sections of the door. You’ll trim those as you hang them. Small pieces that will sit above a door can be cut later. Also, if you have a space that will require a piece less than the full width of the paper, cut that when needed.
Step 3: Roll-on paste.
Using the paint roller, roll-on the paste or wet the back of the pre-pasted wallpaper. This can be done on a floor, although it’s easier on the back if you set a piece of plywood over a workbench to create a “table.”
After pasting each one, fold or book the wallpaper, then roll it and set it where it will go on the wall.
Step 4: Hang the wallpaper.
Start in the corner. Align the wallpaper with your plumb line, and don’t be surprised if it sits uneven in the corner. It can be trimmed, but remember you’ll want a 1/8” to 1/2” overlap.
After it’s smoothed, use a damp sponge to remove excess paste from the surface of the paper or wall.
Trim the corner to allow for an overlap, but to remove any excess.
Now, hang the next piece. Smooth and wipe. Use a seam roller to smooth the seam where the wallpaper meets. Repeat for each piece.
Once you finish a wall, use a utility knife to trim each piece at the top and bottom so it’s snug along the edges.
Step 5: Fit corners, windows, doors, outlets, and switches.
As you hang new wallpaper, you will need to trim it around corners, windows, doors and the electrical boxes in the room. Here’s how to do each.
For the final seam and corner, measure the measure the top, middle and bottom of the space, adding at 1/8” – 1/2” more for the overlap. Often, the full width of the wallpaper doesn’t match the final space going into an inside corner so you may need to make this cut at a slight angle. Transfer the measures to a piece of already pasted paper. Cut carefully.
Take the cut piece and set it in place, matching the pattern at the seam. Smooth it in place, taking extra care in the corner. Wipe down with a sponge.
The last piece rarely matches both at the final seam and in the corner. Match the pattern at the seam. The difference of pattern will be generally unnoticeable in the corner.