Gone are the days of the bright yellow wallpaper that you remember from your grandmothers house. It's time to give wallpaper another chance as an alternative to paint. Here's how to choose a wallpaper that will work best in your home.
The thought of wallpaper elicits feelings of nostalgia for some. and pain for others. Removing wallpaper can be an arduous process, which makes people swear off wallpaper forever. Or, they only think of wallpaper as big and bold floral patterns more suited to a casino than their home. But wallpaper is on a comeback, and there are designs and styles that will fit almost any person's taste.
It's much easier to add a bit of whimsy to a home by using wallpaper that's accented by a cheeky or ironic object. Paint just doesn't get the message across as easily. A traditional wallpaper design can instantly convey a serious and formal mood.
Find the Right Design
Bold wallpaper prints catch the eye, and make a statement for homeowners wishing to present their walls as art. But these types of designs can become dated and lead to buyers remorse down the line.
Subtle designs, and those that mimic organic objects, have more staying power and are less likely to clash with furniture or wall art. Be careful when selecting small patterns as they can be difficult to line up when installing wallpaper panels next to each other.
Wallpaper with a more textured and patterned look can help hide imperfections in a wall surface. They look best in a casual room like a den or bedroom.
A flat and smooth wallpaper design offers a more refined look and works best in a formal area like an entryway or dining room. If you want the flat look but your walls are too rough, use a wall liner, which will provide a smooth surface for your wallpaper.
Here are some other tips for choosing a wallpaper design:
- Horizontal stripes will widen a room and make the ceiling look shorter.
- Vertical stripes add volume to a room and make the ceiling appear higher.
- A wallpaper with a light background will make a room seem larger, conversely a darker wallpaper will make a room appear smaller.
- Larger wallpaper patterns make rooms look smaller are best suited for one wall in a larger room.
Pick Your Material
Vinyl wallpaper is the most common wallpaper available and is the easiest to hang and clean, which makes it great for beginning DIYers.
There are two common types of vinyl wallpaper you'll find in homes. Vinyl-coated wallpaper can be sponged off with soapy water. It has a paper backing and paper surface, which is sealed with a liquid vinyl when installed.
Solid vinyl wallpaper, on the other hand, is completely waterproof and ideal for kitchens and bathrooms. This type of wallpaper can be more difficult to remove than other types, though.
There are other specialty types of wallpaper, like flocked and foiled, which can look great with the right application. But they're more expensive than vinyl and are best used sparingly.
Measure Your Space
The trickiest part of buying wallpaper is selecting the style you want. Figuring out how much you need to purchase should be much easier. Following this basic formula for buying wallpaper.
- Measure your walls and multiply the height by the width of each wall in feet.
- Add all wall measurements to get the total square footage.
- Subtract all windows and doors.
- Examine the roll label for the amount of square metre coverage the roll provides and make sure it is more than your total wall square metreage.
- Buy an extra roll to make sure you have enough. Mistakes can happen and it's better to have an extra roll (that can be returned) then scramble for more that may or may not be available down the line.