Wallpaper is often an inexpensive option to transform a living room or bedroom and is often easy enough to afford yourself. However, it can be a difficult task for many, especially if it has not been attempted before. DIY expert Matthew Clagg of Tool Rental fast Share our best wallpapering tips and tricks to help DIYers get it right the first time.
1. Prepare the space before you set off
The expert told Express.co.uk: “It can be tempting to splurge on a DIY task such as wallpapering without due diligence, attention to space and various safety precautions.
“To ensure you get a professional touch when applying wallpaper—and don’t damage your possessions in the process—clear the room as much as possible. This includes moving furniture away from the walls, removing extra small furnishings, and covering larger items like sofas with dust sheets.
“If you are stripping old wallpaper, be sure to turn off the electricity to the room and cover all electrical outlets to protect it from steam and hot water. Also, open windows and doors to provide good ventilation.”
2. Be careful when preparing the surface
It is advised to fill and sand any cracks or imperfections on the wall before hanging the wallpaper to “ensure a smooth finish”.
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3. Don’t rush at the first drop of paper
According to the expert, it is extremely important to take your time with the first strip of wallpaper because all the others will go along with it.
If the first strip is off, the entire wall may look wonky. The expert said: “To avoid this, mark a plumb line with a tape measure and a spirit level. Measure 50 cm from the left corner of the wall you plan to decorate and mark it with a pen or pencil.
“Then use a spirit level to draw a straight, vertical line that you can hang your first strip of wallpaper on and make sure it hangs straight down.”
4. Take your time around any tricky parts
“Don’t cut corners when it comes to wallpapering because you might regret it,” explained the DIY pro. This is especially true when dealing with trickier areas, including plug sockets, light switches, and radiators.
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“When placing the paper around sockets and switches, turn off the electrical current, unscrew the socket or switch, and pull away from the wall. Mark the four corners of the socket or wallpaper run and use a Stanley knife or scissors to cut the two diagonal lines into an “X” shape.
Then cut out the four triangles around each edge and push any excess paper behind the fitting before screwing it down again.
Ideally, it is recommended to remove the radiators from the wall before wallpapering. However, this is not always possible, and if this is the case, the expert recommended that you measure the dimension from the ceiling or window sill to the radiator anchors, adding 2 to 3 centimeters around the window casings.
The DIY expert noted: “It’s best to remove the radiators from the wall before wallpapering. However, if this is not possible, measure the dimension from the ceiling or window ledge to the radiator anchors, adding 2 to 3 centimeters to cut around the window casings.” .
“If the wallpaper is patterned, add the extra length needed to align the adjacent strip. Next, use a ruler and knife or scissors to cut to the correct length and hang on the wall, before smoothing around the radiator.”
5. Don’t start without the right tools
Using the right tools will make any DIY job much easier, and also help achieve the best finish. When it comes to hanging wallpaper, the expert recommended using a paint roller instead of a traditional wallpaper brush to apply putty because it can save a lot of time and effort.
The expert added, “The easiest and most direct way to remove wallpaper is to use a wallpaper steam stripper, as this will remove the more difficult paper. It can be difficult and time consuming to remove wallpaper using the ‘dot, soak, steam and scrape’ method.” traditional.
“If you have multiple layers or particularly stuck wallpaper, while waiting for the steamer to heat up, score the wallpaper in sections with a Stanley knife so it is easier for the steam to enter the material. Scoring the paper up the wall will also help prevent damage to the ceiling.”
6. Do work upwards when removing wallpaper
If you’re looking to strip wallpaper, it’s best to always start at the bottom of the wall, working from the top. This is because the steam rises, and by doing so, the wallpaper will already be slightly steamed when you get to it.
According to the DIY pro, this will make removing it from the wall much easier.
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