Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Hanging Wallpaper Correctly

If you are interested in hanging wallpaper, or borders, and intend on doing it yourself, here are some easy steps for you to follow. You are about to do something that will make your room beautiful. First relax and read all about getting the hang of it. Take your time, you will find that hanging wallpaper is a do-it-yourself project that is fun, easy and instantly satisfying. Patience is one thing you will need. You will see the dramatic change in your room with each and every strip you hang.Most walls will need some prep work, no matter how new the wall is. Generally all walls that you will be hanging paper on will need to be smooth and clean. Wallcoverings will not adhere to dirt and grease. Clean the walls with household soap or ammonia, and rinse with clean water. Always apply sizing to your walls. Sizing assures an even surface for the wallcovering to adhere to, making it easier to hang, and easier to remove later on. If your hanging wallpaper over paneling, they make a liner you can apply before hanging the paper, ensuring a smooth and clean looking surface.If your going to apply over old vinyl paper, sand it down, or you can spray it with soapy water, and using a putty knife scraping the old paper off. Just keep spraying, the wetter it is, the easier it is to remove.A paper tiger is a great tool to invest it and score the walls with it before starting to scrape. Now lets hang some paper.... It all starts with a straight line. To get the professional straight hanging wallpaper job, you will have to start with a straight line. Its to sad to say,that most homes whether they are new or old will not be very square or straight. The older homes in time will settle, and throw a room out of square.I have seen brand new homes just built, being out of square. This will present a big problem before you even finish a wall. To get a straight line for our starting peice, you will depend upon gravity, to show you your straight starting point. I have learned its better to start in center of a wall instead of in a corner. You can measure over the width minus 1/2" of the paper your using and get a straight line at that point. At the top of the wall tack your plumb line on that mark. Tack a weighted string to the mark. With the string covered with chalk, wait for it to stop swinging,then you can hold the bottom of the string tightly at the base board, and then gently snap it. It will leave and chalk line on the wall showing you your straight line for starting your first peice. TIP: After each finished wall, and starting a new wall, you will want to start a NEW PLUMB LINE. Measure the height of your wall, and cut your first peice 3 inches longer then the height of your wall. If you are hanging a patterned paper, you will need to unroll a second strip, matching the pattern with your first strip. Most paper hangers will cut a few strips at a time, but don't get carried away, 2 will be enough for now. TIP: For straight match patterns with motifs in units, you will want the mofit to fall at the ceiling line where it will be most pleasing. Plan this when you cut your first strip.Chances are, you are going to run into either a window or doorway, hang it like you normally would, cutting around the door or window, using your straight edge. Mark each strip with a pencil on the back side, roll them with the pattern on the inside. Fill your water tray with warm water, and set it at the feet of a table. Check the instructions that came with your wallpaper, for the exact wetting procedure for the type of paper you are hanging. Not all wallpapers are the same in the wetting times. Immerse the rerolled strip, I usually let it set for 10-15 seconds, then start pulling it slowly out of the water tray onto the table with the pattern side down. Fold the strip loosely paste to paste {booking}, top to middle, and bottom to middle. Do not fold so tight to cause creasing. Let it set for the recomemded time per instruction. With some papers there is no setup time, it goes right from water to the wall. TIP: Vinyl and fabric coated wallpapers are more stable when wet. Paper wallpapers should be handled more carefully when wet, to prevent any tearing. Now your ready to hang your first strip. Grab the top edge of the roll and up the ladder we go. Overlap 1 to 1 1/2 inches over the ceiling joint and line up the edge of the strip of paper with your plumb line, letting the extra 1/2"of the paper go into the corner and overhang the joining wall. Let the rest of the strip hang loosely while your aligning the top. It will be easy to position the edge with your line, but be careful not to tear the paper, and don't use any force pulling your paper. Smooth into place with a smoothing brush or a wet sponge or washcloth, stroking from the center to the outside edges, and up and down. Unfold the bottom and smooth in the same manner as before. If wrinkles occur, do not force them, you can usually work them out with your sponge or wash cloth. If you can't get the wrinkles out in this manner, you can carefully pull up the paper, and realign it. Once its hung, and all wrinkles and air bubbles are removed, its time to trim your top and bottom edges. To do this you will need a VERY sharp razor blade or box cutter and a 12" straight edge or wall scraper as a guide. You must hold this very tightly to the wall, or as your cutting, so it don't tare the paper. Trim the top edge along the ceiling, and the bottom edge along the baseboard. It takes sharp blades to get a clean cut, so you might want to change blades often.After your first strip is hung, you want to go back with a clean wet rag, and lightly wash the complete strip of paper. You do NOT want to push hard on your paper, it will push the glue out and the edges will not stick. The edges will start to roll, you are doing this to remove any left over glue on your pattern side. If not, when it dries, the dried paste will eventually turn brown and you don't want anything to mar the beauty of your new wallcovering. In this process, change the water often, and dont forget to clean off any paste that is on your ceiling or baseboard. Now your ready to hang your second strip. Hang the second strip in the same manner as you did the first strip, matching the pattern, and butting the seams together. Remember not to overlap the seams. You want to butt them slightly so they will meet tight, with no spaces between them. Do not push or pull the seams together, as when they dry, you will get little gaps or spaces between them. Instead move the whole peice by gently sliding it into place. You don't need to rush anything, the paste dries slowly.If you use a seam roller, wait about 10 minutes before using your seam roller,and be sure to wash seams real good after using the roller. I must admit, I never used the roller, I just keep going over them with a wash cloth. Now that your getting the hang of it, you can continue on finishing the wall. Remember not to skip above or below your windows, or matching later will be a real headache. To get around your windows or doors, just imagine your wall above or below your window as a small wall, hang and trim as you would your normal wall. The more you hang, the easier you will find it to be. When the job is finished and you see air bubbles, you can always take a straight pin and prick a little hole in it and gently push the air out with seam roller or your cloth. Be sure and read your directions and know your wallpapers. There is a wallpaper called expanded vinyl and it will shrink a lot on your walls, so be careful to read all directions, if the directions say to let it lay for 10 minutes, let it lay for 10 minutes, this is giving it time to shrink.If you have any questions, just contact us at http://www.crockettscountrystore.com/ http://www.wwwfreeoffersonline.com/

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