While there are many different types of wallpaper to choose from, vinyl wallpaper is the best choice for places like the kitchen, bathroom, or basement, where high humidity and temperature changes can damage regular wallpaper. However, this moisture-resistant option is heavy, and therefore it requires a special paste and a firm hand to apply it. To begin installing vinyl wallpaper, use the steps and tips in this handy guide.
Purchase Your Materials
In addition to purchasing your vinyl wallpaper, you will also need to buy some special paste. The type you need will depend on the surface that you will be decorating. If you’re applying the vinyl wallpaper to a painted surface, clear vinyl-wallpaper paste is an appropriate choice. If you’re installing it over another layer of vinyl wallpaper, however, you will need a paste that’s designed for vinyl-to-vinyl surfaces.
Prepare Your Surface
Begin by using a level and a pencil to mark a line, indicating where the first strip of wallpaper should be installed.
Prepare the First Piece of Wallpaper
Your vinyl wallpaper will be sold in several strips. Take the first strip, and unroll it on the floor. Unroll more than is necessary, so that you can trim the excess to match the length of the wall perfectly. Using a paintbrush, apply an even layer of vinyl-wallpaper paste to the back of the strip.
Let the Paste Activate
The paste needs a couple of minutes to get sticky, so fold the strip to make the pasted ends meet, and let it sit for about 5 minutes. In the meantime, you can prepare other strips.
Install the First Strip
After 5 minutes have passed, unfold the first strip of wallpaper. Lift the vinyl-wallpaper strip up, and make sure the edge is perfectly aligned with the pencil mark on the wall. Then, stick the top of the strip to the wall and, applying firm and even pressure, smooth the rest of the strip down the wall.
Smoothing out Air Bubbles
Use a smoother to push out air bubbles or wrinkles, and use a utility knife to trim any excess from the bottom or sides. If you need a straight edge, you can use a paint scraper.
Repeat Along the Wall
Repeat this process with each strip going along the wall, taking care to align each strip carefully so that the pattern is continued harmoniously. Once done and dry, feel free to wash this scrubbable wallpaper with a damp sponge.