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Installing Wallpaper

For some, it looks like a breeze, while for some others, installing wallpaper is crazy rocket science! If you have never installed wallpapers, or have installed it with not much success, here are some basic to help you install wallpapers like a pro.

Wallpaper installation tools;

First, you would need to have the following materials on ground for your wallpaper installation:

·      A ladder – or something stable to help you in reaching high head rooms. 

·      A measuring tape – to get your measurements and alignment right.

·      A pencil – to mark places to start and stop and so on.

·      A pair of scissors, blade, knife, or cutter – to cut off the wallpaper from the roll, or when you get to the end of a line on the wall.

·      Wallpaper adhesive – for non pre-pasted wallpapers 

·      A Seam roller 

·      A brush for applying adhesive.

·      A clean soft cloth for smoothing over.

·      Your wallpaper.

How Do I Get Started?

Walls need to be prepared and made ready to receive wallpapers. The walls should be dry, smooth and not dusty. 

Before you install,

1.    Cover your furniture and floors to avoid adhesives getting on them.

2.    Clean your walls and make sure they  are dry  before installing

3.    Fill holes in the wall with fillers, and file them flat with a sandpaper, to correspond with the rest of the walls. You could also use a lining paper for a smoother background, if you are not able to cover all your walls

4.    Leave some allowance at the top of the wall, and some at the bottom, in case you make any mistakes, and may need to shift it up or down

5.    Get a very straight line for your first strip, as this would guide the remaining strips. You can use a straight long ruler or a plumb.  

The installation: 

Some wallpapers come with directions on how to install. The kind of wallpaper will determine how to install.

–       Some already have adhesive on the wallpaper (prepasted), and so do not need wallpaper paste or glue, while some do not have adhesive, and so need glue.

–       If your wallpaper has adhesives already, then you soak in water (please read direction on the label) start pasting.

–       If not, spread your wallpaper glue on the wallpaper evenly, and start from top of the wall to paste, remembering to start at the bottom of the allowance that you left, (it would be good to fold the allowance off, to know where to start pasting from). 

–       If you are required to apply the glue on the walls, instead of the paper, apply to one section of the wall at a time, so that the glue does not dry up on other sections before you get there.

–       As you paste the wallpaper, to avoid creasing, smooth over with your soft brush or cloth from the centre to the edges.

–       After you finish with one strip, check that there are no air pockets or creases, before starting on the next strip. You can get rid of air pockets with a pin and smoothen again with the soft cloth. 


–       How Do I Get A Smooth Finish?

Measure the length of your walls, to get the right length of wallpaper to use, and remember to leave an allowance above and below in case of mistakes.

When done with pasting, place your straight metal ruler or measuring plumb horizontally along the edges, and use your cutter to cut along the lines of your ruler, for a straight cut.


For a smooth finish around the wall angles and electrical points, switch off the electricity, and unscrew the socket and switch covers. Cut with a sharp knife around these points, smoothen out with your cloth and then replace the covers. 

Ensure that the pattern of your subsequent strips match the previous strip’s pattern.

Leave the walls to dry and clean up whatever excess paste or off cuts you may have around.

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