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Wallpaper Hanging Tips

by Guest Post on May 11, 2012

Rarely walls and corners are straight, so it is best not to rely on the lines of the walls as guides when you are hanging paper. Simple tips like checking the markings on the back when cutting the paper help that you place your paper in the correct order and the right way up.

  1. Always paste pre-pasted papers, using a thinned solution of pre-mixed clear paste. (Do not submerge paper into the water as suggested by the manufacturer). Add about 1/2 cup of ammonia to each gallon of diluted pre-mixed paste. Paste paper on a table, never submerge; keep the face of the paper clean. Keep a sponge and clean water near your work. Wipe down periodically while working; use seam roller if needed.
  2. Add color to your size or primer to match the background color of your paper. Especially do this when working with darker wall coverings.
  3. Always keep water-soluble colored pencils or tubes of acrylic colors handy. These can be very helpful for hiding questionable seam tears. Moisten a cloth with the color you need, and wipe this color into a seam or tear. With practice, this can become very effective.
  4. If you need a quick new sharp edge on your blade, push the edge of your blade into the top of your wooden step ladder, and bend the blade until the blade snaps. You now have a new sharp edge to make that quick cut. This is handy when you don't feel like climbing down a ladder just to change the blade for that instant. (Remember to remove the piece of the broken blade from your ladder later).
  5. When applying pre-pasted borders over any paper, pre-pasted or otherwise, always paste the border with a diluted mixture of Vinyl to Vinyl paste. Never rely on the pre-pasted surface of the border.
  6. Place the paper on the wall as close to the match as possible; don't rely on being able to slide the paper to the match; always butt seams. Sliding the paper removes glue from the seams. If your paper slides too easily, your paste is too thick. If your paper doesn't slide at all, your paste is too thin or your application is too sparse.
  7. For hand-printed wallpapers, clay-based pastes work best. Keep the surface of the paper as clean as possible before applying the paste to the paper. For Foils and Mylars, apply the paste to the wall; do not fold or crease the wall covering. For Fabrics, manufacturers' recommendations for types of paste to use for their product, are usually accurate.
  8. Before you start installing your wall covering, plan the whole room. Know exactly where each strip of paper will lay. This way you will avoid needing to fill in with narrow strips of paper near doors and windows. It takes very little time and makes the whole job a pleasure.
  9. On dark pre-trimmed papers, to avoid white edges from showing, run a similar color piece of chalk or pastel stick all around each end of the roll of paper; the edge absorbs this color, and this can eliminate a lot of problems with seams showing.
  10. When hanging long lengths of the border, use a push pin to hold your border to the wall while you move your ladder. The tiny hole left by the pin will be hardly noticeable. If it can be seen, color the hole with a water-soluble pencil. In most situations, this method is much better than setting up a scaffold.

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