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A person pouring wallpaper paste into a bucket

Overview

Wallpaper is an easy way to create a feature wall or transform a whole room. We’ll take you through the steps and equipment you need to cut the wallpaper to size, apply the paste and the best way to make sure the wallpaper is on straight.

Steps

1Measure for your first drop

Before you start, read the instructions that come with the wallpaper. After this, measure the width of your wallpaper. Deduct approximately 5 centimetres from this figure, then use the tape measure to mark this distance out from the corner of the wall. From this mark, use the spirit level and pencil to run a straight line from the top of the wall to the bottom. This line is where the edge of your wallpaper will be. You need to allow the wallpaper to overlap onto the wall next to it, so you can cut it cleanly in the corner, after hanging it. 

A person marking a wall using a measuring tape

2Mix the wallpaper paste

Read the instructions on the wallpaper paste packet. In a bucket, add the necessary amount of paste to the required amount of water. Use the stirrer to mix this until the paste has a thick consistency then pour the paste into the paint roller tray.
A person pouring wallpaper paste into a bucket

3Apply the wallpaper paste to the wall

Working from the corner, use the paint brush to apply the wallpaper paste to the wall where you're going to hang your first drop. A brush is ideal to apply the paste in the corners and along the edges. Use the roller to apply the paste to the rest of the wall. Make sure to get even coverage with the roller. Overlap when applying the paste and roll and brush it beyond the pencil line you drew with the spirit level.
A person applying wallpaper paste in a corner

4Hang the first drop of wallpaper

Get up on the ladder and line the end of the wallpaper roll up with the top of the wall. Also line the edge of the wallpaper with the straight line that runs down the wall. Now run your hand over it, so that it sticks to the wall. Step down from the ladder and unroll the wallpaper until the roll is sitting on the floor. Cut the wallpaper from the roll, below the wall.

A person starting to attach wallpaper to the top of a wall

5Smooth and trim the wallpaper

Use the plastic wallpaper smoother to smooth out all of the bubbles and creases in the wallpaper. Work from the top of the wallpaper to the bottom. Make sure you smooth all of the wallpaper because it also helps it stick to the wall. Once the wallpaper is smooth, use the utility knife and straight edge of the smoother to trim the wallpaper in the corner and at the bottom of the wall.

A person using a plastic wallpaper smoother on a wall

6Hang the second sheet of wallpaper

Apply paste to the wall where your second sheet of wallpaper will hang, using the paint brush and roller. Apply the paste evenly and wider than the width of your wallpaper. Stand on the ladder holding the top of the wallpaper and line-up the pattern on it with the wallpaper next to it. Then follow the same process as Step 5.

A person applying a second row of wallpaper down a wall

7Hang the rest of the wallpaper

After hanging the first two sheets of wallpaper, continue applying paste to the wall and hanging the sheets of wallpaper until you have covered the entire wall. Make sure the wallpaper matches the pattern of the sheet next to it and follows its straight line. 

A person trimming wallpaper with a utility knife

8Trim the wallpaper for a powerpoint

If you covered a hole or powerpoint with wallpaper, you need to cut the wallpaper so it can be installed. Before you start, turn the electricity in the house off. Feel where the hole for the powerpoint is, then use the utility knife to cut from corner to corner of the hole, leaving an X shaped cut in the wallpaper. Have the powerpoint installed by a licenced electrician.
A wall with wallpaper in a fern pattern

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Health & Safety

Asbestos, lead-based paints and copper chromium arsenic (CCA) treated timber are health hazards you need to look out for when renovating older homes. These substances can easily be disturbed when renovating and exposure to them can cause a range of life-threatening diseases and conditions including cancer. For information on the dangers of asbestos, lead-based paint and CCA treated timber and tips for dealing with these materials contact your local council's Environmental Health Officer or visit our Health & Safety page.

When following our advice in our D.I.Y. videos, make sure you use all equipment, including PPE, safely by following the manufacturer’s instructions. Check that the equipment is suitable for the task and that PPE fits properly. If you are unsure, hire an expert to do the job or talk to a Bunnings Team Member.