How to Hang Wallpaper

Wallpaper is making a comeback!  Have you ever wondered just how hard it is to hang wallpaper or put up a wall mural?  Well, this is my second time doing it and let me tell you – you can do it!  It’s not so hard, I have a step my step tutorial below.  Let me tell you a little story.

Learn how to get a custom looking wall mural and step by step details on how to hang wallpaper at UncookieCutter.com!

This post is sponsored by Photowall. All ideas and tutorials are my own.

A couple of months ago, my son had a sleepover and when we all woke up they had promptly moved everything out of his room, into the guest room and he said “now you can start making over my room”. I’ve been telling him I was going to get to his room ever since I finished up Bonnie’s room over a year ago!  Well, I guess he was ready but was I?  I went back to work this year after a 16 year break and let me tell you, it’s been an adjustment for sure!  But then a company named Photowall reached out to see if I was interested in a collaboration and so I took a look at their website.  I immediately knew what I was going to do to set Charlie’s room apart – a wall mural!

My basketball loving son wanted a basketball themed room.  But, he also wanted it to be cool, funky and different. I was a little stumped until I saw this mural after searching “basketball” on the site.  I instantly fell in love, said “let’s collaborate” and then we got started.  This is the wall we picked to install the mural.

Ordering this was super easy, and the company was actually really helpful. If you have just a plain, rectangular wall…easy peasy!  Just put in the wall dimensions and they’ll do the rest.    For this wall, however, with it’s angled ceiling and doorway, I wanted the image centered in the middle of the large space, but wanted enough wallpaper to go over the door to the edge. But I was a little stumped on the math on how to make it work.  I enlisted the help of their design team. For $5 you can make sure before you order that your design will fit perfectly in your weird space.  You might not need this, but it gave me a little extra confidence before I ordered.  They sent me a mockup of how it would work and we were ready to go.  

And then we had a setback.  My basketball-loving son had a very unlucky fall on the court which resulted in six broken bones!  We had to put the project on hold for a minute.  But, I’m happy to report he’s healing, doing much better and I was able to finally get started on this room.  

If you want to hang wallpaper, let me tell you – it really isn’t as bad as its reputation would suggest.  To me, the hard part was skimming the wall.  I had to do this a while back in Bonnie’s room for her wallpaper, and again here.  What is with these overly textured walls here in Oklahoma?! Instead of taking you through it step by step here, if you don’t know how to skim coat a wall, go visit Sawdust Girl here, she’s got a great tutorial to walk you through it. 

Learn how to get a custom looking wall mural and step by step details on how to hang wallpaper at UncookieCutter.com!

After the skim coat, I would recommend painting it.  Especially if you are going to use a high-quality premium paper like I did.  The drywall mud is going to soak in the paste you’ll be using and will cause it to be more vulnerable to tear and it’ll take way longer to dry.  So, take the time to slap a light color coat of paint or two up.  Now you are ready for your wall mural!  

Materials Needed: Before you begin, gather the following materials:

  1. Wallpaper or wall mural
  2. Wallpaper paste (comes with your order) 
  3. Wallpaper brush or roller
  4. Smoothing tool or plastic spatula
  5. Utility knife or wallpaper cutter
  6. Measuring tape
  7. Level
  8. Pencil
  9. Step ladder
  10. Sponge and water (for cleaning excess adhesive)

*just a note, I order the wallpaper hanging kit from Photowall and it includes 3-8 and it was all perfect!  

Now, let’s hang wallpaper! 

Step 1: Prepare the Surface, this includes the skim coating and painting.  If it doesn’t need that, make sure and fill any holes or imprefections. Also, the wallpaper is a little see through, so make sure you use a white or light color paint!  I also removed all trim and outlet covers. 

Step 2: Draw Starter line. I drew a vertical line using a level on the first floor to ceiling panel past the door.  I started there because I knew my particular picture was not going to extend over the door, and the part over the door was so small, that I decided to make sure that first full piece would be straight vertically. MAKE sure you do this VERY lightly or you will be able to see this pencil mark.  I can still see the first one a little bit, after that one I erased as I went but just a heads up that you will probably be able to see the pencil marks through the paper if you you have large light colored spots. 

Learn how to get a custom looking wall mural and step by step details on how to hang wallpaper at UncookieCutter.com!

Step 3: Make sure all your panels are correct and in tack.  For this wall, because of the opening and the angled ceiling, I knew I would have to trim a lot so I wanted to make sure everything was correct and going to be centered.  Because I had never used this company before, I was a little nervous because I knew it would look weird if it was just a little off.  But, it was perfect! They went off the measurements I sent and it ended up lining up perfectly! 

Learn how to get a custom looking wall mural and step by step details on how to hang wallpaper at UncookieCutter.com!

Step 4: Mix Wallpaper Adhesive. Not sure why this step was the scariest to me.  It meant I was finally getting started!  But there was nothing to it and I was ready to go in no time. 

Step 5: Apply Adhesive.  Because these panels were so large and it advised starting from right to left, and I knew I’d have to shave some off the top, I applied the pasted directly to the wall and then hung the paper.  I did hang the first floor to ceiling panel first and worked right from there.  I just want to make sure that first line was straight.  

Step 6: Hang Wallpaper! You are going to need to line up your panels.  This is the hardest part, you have to make sure your panels are lined up correctly to achieve the overall look.  This is especially true if you are hanging a wall mural.  You will need another person, I can’t imagine trying to line this up and smooth it all out alone. But with two people, it went quickly and smoothly.  

Step 7: Smooth.  Starting from left to right, line the picture up.  The slowly work the wallpaper up and down, lining up the seam as you go.  You’ll have to pull and tug a bit to get it in place, but again, having another person is a must!

Learn how to get a custom looking wall mural and step by step details on how to hang wallpaper at UncookieCutter.com!

Step 8: Repeat the Process Continue hanging and smoothing each strip of wallpaper, ensuring that the patterns align correctly. Take your time to match patterns precisely for a polished finish.

Step 9: Trim Excess Wallpaper. Okay, here is where I do it differently.  I don’t want to chance ripping it trying to cut along the edge and I don’t want an undone seam showing, so I always put it under the trim.  I know, I know – I’m not supposed to do that.  I just find it way easier and I was redoing the trim here anyway, so I just did it all underneath. 

Step 10: Clean Excess Adhesive Use a damp sponge to clean any excess adhesive from the surface of the wallpaper.  Be sure to clean as you go!  Don’t leave any adheasive on the front of the paper.  

Learn how to get a custom looking wall mural and step by step details on how to hang wallpaper at UncookieCutter.com!

Step 11: Finishing Touches. Allow the wallpaper to dry completely before moving furniture back into the room or making any additional touch-ups.  After drying, I hung trim and then caulked and painted all around. 

Learn how to get a custom looking wall mural and step by step details on how to hang wallpaper at UncookieCutter.com!

That’s all there is to hang wallpaper!  I’m so stoked at how this wall mural turned out and I’m super excited to finish this room up.  Stay tuned for updates on all the future projects in this room! You have to head over to Photowall and see all of there murals, they are so amazing!! I kind of want to do murals in every room.  What a unique way to really amplify a room. If you like what you see and want to try it for yourself, use my code uncookiecutter20 to save 20% and free shipping!  (Offer good until Dec. 24, 2023).  

Learn how to get a custom looking wall mural and step by step details on how to hang wallpaper at UncookieCutter.com!

Charlie is super happy with how his room is coming along. Can’t wait to finish it up and move him back into it! Let me know if you have any other questions! 

April

How to Hang Wallpaper 

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Learn how to get a custom looking wall mural and step by step details on how to hang wallpaper at UncookieCutter.com!

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