Whether you’ve hired a decorator or you’re doing it alone, wallpapering a room is a big task. One of the most important parts of the job is the prepping of the walls beforehand, ensuring there is a smooth and clean surface for the wallpaper to adhere to. If you’ve hired a professional, you can save yourself time and money by at least getting the majority of the prep work done yourself. Set yourself half a day for an average sized room.
Make sure any old wallpaper is removed from the wall. Remove flaking or old paint with a sanding block and wash down the walls with a sponge and soap and water. If you can, purchase a dissolvable sugar solution that will remove grease and dirt from the walls. If there is mould, a solution of bleach and water should get rid of it, although make sure you’ve also tackled the cause of the damp.
Once the walls are clean, begin sanding them down. This creates a smooth finish that makes wallpapering a breeze. Use a sanding block and a fine grade sandpaper for the best finish. If you have a particularly bumpy surface, use a rougher sandpaper to begin with and finish with the finer grade. The higher grade paper will give a smoother, more even finish, which provides a better surface for wallpapering.
Fill in minor cracks and nail holes in the wall with spackling and allow to dry before sanding off again. Use a dry brush to wipe down the wall and remove excess dust. If you want to keep nail holes for shelving and pictures, stick a match or cocktail stick into the hole. When you place the wallpaper on the wall, the stick can pierce the paper, keeping the nail holes in the place you want them.
Finally, you’ll want to prime your walls. This will help seal the surface and prevent the wall from absorbing the wallpaper paste. It also provides a smooth finish and helps later removal of the wallpaper.
Make sure to look through our collection of Wallpaper and Accessories to make sure you have all the tools you need to prep your walls, as well as find some beautiful wallpaper to freshen up your home with.