Uncle Bobs Tips

Wallpaper Tips- Get it Done Right

Wallpaper Tips- Get it Done Right

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Ready for some more wallpaper tips? Let's get started. Visit our other wallpaper articles for how to wallpaper instructions, wallpaper techniques, and advice on dealing with obstructions.

Wallpaper Removal Tips

- Some old wallpaper just peels away, such as vinyl. Paper sheets, however, will need to be treated with warm water or a stripping agent. Soak a small area for a few minutes and test to see how readily the paper will come loose before attempting to peel away large amounts of wallpaper.

- A steam stripper is very effective for tough to loosen paper. Otherwise you may have to soak each area multiple times.

- Through out old paper frequently, don't let it sit around on the floor or in bags. Pieces left on the floor or on tables will dry and stick to the surface tenaciously, and bags of condensed paper is a fire hazard.

Wallpaper Hanging Tips

- If you have a mantelpiece, fireplace or any other focal point in the room, use this as your starting point (instead of a corner). In this case, find the center of your focal point, draw a vertical line from ceiling to the top of the point, and this will be your starting place. Two pieces of wallpaper will meet on either side of the line, and from there, you'll continue to work around the room in either direction. Work from both directions if using a focal point to avoid a mismatched finish line right at the focal point.

- Hang the second and each consecutive piece slightly away from the first and slide it next to the previous piece, lining up the pattern properly.

- Press the overhang paper into the corner crease gently but firmly all along the wall and into the corner using a brush or a plastic spatula.

- Lay the top half of your paper first and then the bottom half. If you can do it in two sections, this will be more effective and neater. Unfold the top half first, and apply and smooth out according to your plumb line before unfolding the second half.

- Trim with a sharp cutting knife and clean excess paste with a damp sponge.

- A seam roller will seal the seams of each strip as tightly as possible. A squeezed out sponge and pressure can also do the trick. When using a seam roller, careful not to apply too much pressure or you might be left with bruised or tinted paper.

- Reverse hanging is a method by which every other strip is hung upside down. This is done to offset any slight color variations that may occur in the rolls of wallpaper.

- Smooth out paper with an airbrush. Run the brush gently at an angle down, from the center towards the outer edges of the paper. Work from one side and in one direction so that you are actually eliminating air bubbles not just moving them from side to side.

- Remove excess or spilled glue from the face of the paper quickly to avoid discoloration or damage. A damp sponge works great for this.

Additional Wallpaper Tips

- Wash your hands frequently to avoid sullying paper with glue

- Use a damp sponge to clean up excess adhesive.

- Leftover air bubbles can be remedied; most will likely disappear as the paste dries. For the ones that don't, though, you can take a sharp blade (exact-o knife, or the like), make an "X" cut over the bubble and release the air. Apply paste under the flap and reseal.

- Some wallpaper is non-paste formulated and requires the company adhesive to work with. EasyChange is an example of such a wall covering.

- Wallpaper borders work the same as wallpaper, only easier because you're dealing with smaller versions of the stuff.

- Vinyl does not naturally stick to itself. For this reason, when working with vinyl paper, you will need a separate vinyl adhesive for all the overlapping areas.

- Pre-pasted paper needs to be soaked in a water tray with lukewarm water, rolled out at the base of the wall, and hung from ceiling to floor. Activators are also available to eliminate the water tray. Professionals will never soak pre-pasted paper. Instead, they will use the same paste as you would with regular wallpaper diluted to create a weaker paste.

- Don't seam roll flocked or embossed paper, it may damage the design or surface of the paper.

A little safety goes a long way

- When working with water or steam turn off electricity to the area/room to avoid shock

- Remember that steam gets extremely hot and can even burn your skin if you are not careful. Keep the room well ventilated when using a steamer. The boxed in steam can quickly corrode your plaster ceiling or walls and cause damage and hazardous situations.

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