Reka’s top tips and tricks of wallpapering
Wallpapering can sound daunting at first, but believe me, it’s simpler than you might think. It’s actually my favourite DIY project and the only one I’m ready to do any time!
I’ll list the basics here, and then add my favourite ideas to help you achieve yyour perfect wall.
What you’ll need:
1. The most obvious is the wallpaper paste. All my wallpaper is “paste the wall” type, so you’ll need to make sure that your paste is this type. (There’s also the ‘paste the paper’ type). My favourite paste is the one pictured above, and it’s also my first trick to easy wallpapering, because this paste has a pink/purple colour when you paste it on the wall but dries transparent. This way you can ensure that you applied the paste on the whole wall area that you want to cover. Also important to note here, that you should always paste a wider area than your roll width is, because you don’t want to be struggling with pasting beside the already hung paper.
2. You’ll also need a good pair of scissors to cut the wallpaper to size.
3. Wallpaper brush is also a must, I like Harris brushes, I actually bought one and after lots of projects, it’s still going strong.
4. Crafter knife and squeegee. The crafter knife will help cut the excess wallpaper off, I use it on the top of the wall and on the bottom. The squeegee helps to soothe any air bubbles out of the paper, you can also use a clean paint roller or even your hands, but you need to make sure that your hands are clean at all times.
5. Spirit level is very important, especially when you start wallpapering, because you want to make sure that your paper is up straight. This will make the rest of the wallpapering an easy project.
6. Precision edge, which I didn’t use for a while but when I started using it, I realised just how easier it made my life. You can substitute it with a ruler if you don’t have one. I use this tool to help me cut the excess wallpaper with the crafter knife perfectly straight.
7. Clean microfibre or other cotton clothes to clean your wallpaper while it’s still drying.
My top tips and tricks to the biggest questions:
- The most basic big question is, where to start wallpapering? Some Google results will tell you to start wallpapering in the middle of the room, whereas others will suggest to start in the right hand side corner. So which one is the right answer? I think it comes down to preference, however, I think the easiest way is to start in the right hand side, BUT if there’s a window or a door, start beside it. This way, you won’t have to cut out the paper in an awkward shape, and will save on paper. I also don’t agree with the argument to start in the middle, which is, that that’s the focal point, hence avoid having a cut line in the middle. Why? Because, chances are, you’ll have either a mirror or shelf or a picture on the wall which will cover the line, so it’s quite irrelevant to start in the middle and end up cutting more waste when you get to the sides of the wall.
Should you paint the wall white before wallpapering? We usually hate prep work, yes, it’s important but let’s face it, it’s also very boring and time consuming. In my experience, the answer to this question will depend on the colour of your existing wall and the wallpaper, and the quality of the wallpaper. For example, in my hallway, my existing wall was pastel blue, very similar to the colour of the wallpaper I chose, although the wallpaper was also 50% white, which is the lightest possible colour you can have. And I also had some darker blue paint where my previous mirror used to hang. However, I knew that my wallpaper is of superior quality, in fact, all my wallpaper is the thickest paper available. Therefore, I knew that with a light wall, my paper would cover it perfectly. Obviously, if the same wall was pitch black, I wouldn’t have got away with not painting the wall first.
- I also never used lining paper, however if your wall is very uneven, or has some sort of texture to it, you’ll need to start with it before applying the wallpaper.
- As I mentioned above, when listing the tools, when it comes to the first full piece of wallpaper, your spirit level is your best friend. By making sure that your wallpaper is perfectly straight, you’re pretty much set up for success. Matching the paper afterwards will be easy as pie.
- To ensure that your wall is perfect and has no excess glue or dirt on it, I recommend cleaning it with a damp, clean cloth. All my wallpaper wipeable.
Please allow 24-48 hours for the wall to dry before adding anything to your beautiful wall!