How to Hang Wallpaper Like a Pro

Is it time to redecorate? Or maybe you just want to refresh your interior?
Switching out your wallpaper is a really effective way to transform any room and show off your personal style.
We don’t want the fear of not knowing how to hang wallpaper to stop anyone from creating their dream interior though, so we’ve put together an easy guide to show you how to hang wallpaper like a pro.

Hanging Wallpaper Like a Pro

Prep the Walls

Once you’ve picked out your wallpaper, it’s time to prepare the walls.
Start by washing down the walls that you plan to wallpaper with warm soapy water and leave them to dry for 24 hours. Once they are dry, you can fill in any imperfections with putty and sand them smooth.
Finally, apply a clear wallpapering primer to the walls, leaving them to dry for a minimum of two hours before beginning the next step. Take this time to double check that you have all the equipment you need for the rest of the project.
Along with your chosen wallpaper, we recommend you have a:
  • Step ladder
  • Pencil
  • Drop cloth or newspaper
  • Wallpaper paste
  • Utility knife
  • Straightedge
  • Wallpaper smoothing tool
  • Seam roller

Measure Up

First, you’ll need to measure the length of your wall from the ceiling to the skirting board. Then measure out your wallpaper, making it approximately four inches longer than the wall length. This is so you can fit the wallpaper snugly and then trim off any additional length at the end.
Next, measure the width of your wallpaper. Subtract about an inch (this will wrap into the corner and you can trim it later) and measure that length out horizontally from the left corner of your wall. You’ll then want to draw a straight line from the ceiling down to the skirting board using a pencil and a level.
Repeat the process along to the right corner of the wall using the actual width of the wallpaper —this is so the seams meet but don’t overlap. If you’re doing a feature wall, you can stop here.
If not, repeat the process throughout the room.

Paste and Hang

Now it’s time to hang your wallpaper. Most wallpapers come unpasted. However, if yours is pre-pasted, you’ll need to skip this next step and soak the wallpaper in a bucket of water to activate the paste strips. It will come with clear instructions for this.
For unpasted wallpaper, you’ll need to apply the paste manually. We recommend doing this one piece at a time, using a figure of eight motion to spread it evenly. Hang the first piece in the left corner using the lines measured out to keep it even. You want the right edge of the paper to line up exactly with the vertical line you drew earlier.
Press the wallpaper to the wall and use a smoothing tool to push out any bubbles or wrinkles. Continue the process with the rest of the wallpaper, remembering to match up the wallpaper pattern as you go. The seams should meet but not overlap. Use a seam roller to press the edges together for a uniform finish.
Tip: If you encounter any objects, like switches, plugs or windows, just paper straight over these but leave the paper loose around them. You’ll neaten this up once you’ve finished wallpapering.

Neaten Up the Edges

Cut out the wallpaper around any objects and press the wallpaper down around the edges. Remember to turn off the power before doing this around plugs and switches. Finally, trim all the untidy edges using a utility knife and a straightedge for a professional finish.

Summary

Giving your home a luxurious spruce up couldn’t be easier! If you follow these simple wallpapering tips, your home will look like it was decorated by a pro —and it’s bound to catch the eye of all your guests.
For more home décor ideas, browse our full range here. You can also browse the Grace & Grey blog for interior design tips, tricks, trends and more.