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How to Wallpaper a Room (page 2 of 3)

Wallpaper adds a decorative element to any room. Follow these step-by-step instructions for hanging wallpaper on a flat wall and around windows and doors.
Excerpted from Do It Yourself Home Improvement

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How to Paper the Top of a Window Recess

Paste a short piece of paper on top of the existing sheet to create a flap to fold into the window recess (Image 1). Make sure that the patterns on the two sheets match. After cutting the flap, use a cutting edge and a knife to cut a diagonal line through both sheets of paper from the corner of the recess to the edge of the top sheet (Image 2).

Remove both pieces of paper, then peel away the bottom sheet and place the top piece onto the wall (Image 3). As always, make sure that the pattern fits perfectly with the edge sheet. Fold the remaining flap of the new sheet into the window recess. Brush out any bubbles and trim any ends with the knife (Image 4). Hang a whole length so that it overlaps the other end of the window. Create flaps and fold them into the recess as before. Fill in between the window sill and the floor. Trim the first and fourth lengths neatly around the sill.

How to Paper the Side of a Door

When you get to a door, apply a sheet as normal. Cut out a rough area of the door with scissors, leaving plenty of excess paper (Image 1). Cut diagonally through the excess paper over the door to the corner of the casing (Image 2). Crease the top and side flaps into place, leaving the excess around the casing. Trim the excess paper from the top of the door frame, using a utility or trimming knife (Image 3). Continue trimming the paper down the side of the door frame (Image 4). Use the edge of the casing as a guide. Smooth the paper around the casing with the brush (Image 5).

How to Paper Above of a Door

Hang a short length of paper above the door. When perfectly aligned, trim it against the ceiling and casing (Image 1). On reaching the other side of the door, use the same technique for the opposite edge, except do not trim along the vertical edge of the casing until the next full length of paper is hung. In this way it is easier to maintain the precise vertical position of the lengths and to trim accurately along the casing edge (Image 2).

Negotiate the Final Seam

Measure from the edge of the first length into the corner and add 3/4-inch (Image 1). Transfer this measurement to a length of pasted paper and cut along it. Take the measured strip and hang it against the first strip you hung, matching the pattern carefully. Brush the other edge into and around the internal corner (Image 2). Carefully trim into the corner to remove the excess paper, and the top and bottom of the length (Image 3). Smooth the ends when finished, adding extra paste if necessary. The final edges may not match perfectly, but is hardly noticeable in the corner (Image 4). Sponge any remaining paste off the paper to finish.

Papering Around External Corners

There are many other areas where precise measuring, cutting and trimming are required. In most cases, it is simply a further application of the principles demonstrated on those pages. In others, however, some special techniques are needed; the most common of these are illustrated here. As always, remember to turn off the electricity before working around lights and switches, and drain radiators if removing them from the wall.

Hang the paper so that it bends around the corner (Image 1). Slice the bottom to make two separate flaps, then brush the paper flat.

Hang a second sheet around the corner. Make sure it is vertical. Check that the pattern fits, then brush the second sheet flat (Image 2). Overlap the first sheet.

Use a straight edge (a metal ruler is ideal) to cut through both layers of the overlap (Image 3).

Pull back the overlap and remove the paper below. Then remove the excess from the top sheet. Smooth to reveal a precise butt joint (Image 4).

Trim the top and bottom of both sheets in the usual way. Remove any excess paste from the paper surface. Use a roller to secure the seam (Image 5). You are now ready to hang the next sheet.

Papering Around Internal Corners

It is much easier to paper an internal corner with two vertical strips than with one. Start by folding a sheet into the corner (Image 1).

Brush the sheet flat, then slice the paper 3/4 in (20 mm) to the right of the corner to create two separate sheets (Image 2).

Move the right-hand sheet to one side, then trim the top and bottom of the left-hand sheet. Move the right-hand sheet back across and trim (Image 3).

Check that the paper is at the right level by comparing points of the pattern with adjacent lengths (Image 4).

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Excerpted from Do It Yourself Home Improvement

© Dorling Kindersley Limited 2009