Wallpapering your home can be difficult when you’re not properly prepared. So, to help you have the easiest and smoothest wallpapering journey, we’ve compiled a list of the most common questions asked about wallpapers online, including where to start, how to apply new wallpaper, and where you can buy designer wallpaper online. To learn how to DIY your walls, read on!

How do I prepare a wall for wallpaper? 

Where do you start when wallpapering a room? Well, first comes the preparation work. You don’t want to realise half-way through wallpapering that you forgot a tool, didn’t buy enough wallpaper, or are ill-equipped to finish the job. These are the first things to consider when preparing a room for wallpaper.


 Step 1: Ready Your Room


Make sure you protect your floors with a suitable covering. Floors can be damaged if paste used for wallpapering falls onto the floor, especially if it is carpeted. Uncarpeted floors are also vulnerable to damage from scraping ladders or dents from dropped tools while working.


Next, make sure your walls are stripped of any wallpaper that was previously on them. Some people just paste over the top of old wallpaper, but this isn’t ideal, as it will impair the quality and smoothness of the new wallpaper.


Finally, be sure to have the right tools for the job, as you don’t want to find yourself empty-handed right when you most need a brush, measuring tape, or smoothing cloth!


Step 2: Prep Your Walls


Moving on, you want to level out your walls to cover up holes and scrapes in the wall. After this step is complete, sand your walls smooth to remove bumps and rough spots. This process is important to complete before wallpapering, to ensure that no previous wall damage is visible when you layer the wallpaper.


Before you start laying the wallpaper, you’ll want to plot your path on the wall with a pencil. Doing this will prevent layering mistakes, resulting in mismatching patterns and ill-fitted corners.

How do I remove old wallpaper? 

Removing wallpaper can be a messy and time-consuming job, so you want to be well-prepared for it. If you have the right tools for the job, the whole process can be completed a lot more smoothly.


Step 1: Determine Wallpaper Type 


First, determine the type of wallpaper you have. The difficulty of the removal depends on the type!


  • Type 1 wallpaper can easily be removed, and you can simply peel it off.
  • Type 2 is traditional untreated or uncoated wallpaper; this type only needs to be wetted before it can be stripped and scraped off.
  • Type 3 is made of vinyl or laminated coating, which is usually found in bathrooms and moisture-prone areas. This is the trickiest and most time-consuming wallpaper type to remove.


Step 2: Prep the Room


Make sure the room has been prepped and that the wall-plates from light switches and outlets have been removed—tape over these switches and outlets to prevent moisture from getting in.


Step 3: Remove Wallpaper


To remove type 2 traditional non-treated wallpaper, you can use a garden sprayer filled with a combination of water and wallpaper removal solution. Apply it to the wall in liberal amounts, and leave it to soak for 15-20 minutes. Then, start peeling the paper with a paint scraper, or dull knife.

Coated walls are the hardest to remove because they are made to repel water, so you’ll need to use a steamer to remove this type. First, score the wallpaper with a removal tool before using a steamer; this will help the steam effectively penetrate the surface of the wall. Hold the steamer to the wall for 15-20 seconds, and follow immediately with the scraper to lift away the wallpaper.


Note: After removing old wallpaper, wait a day or two before starting any painting or repairs, to allow the walls to dry. 


How do I apply new wallpaper? 

Step 1: Choose a Corner


Be kind to yourself and choose an easy corner to start with—one without plugs or switches that could get in the way of layering.


Step 2: Measure


Once you’ve chosen your starting wall, measure its length, and add an extra 20cm to the measurement to allow some wiggle room. Wonky walls or unprecise measurements don’t have to be the end of the world! Measure your wallpaper and mark the cutting line with a pencil on the back. If the wallpaper lines up at the edges when you fold it, you’re good to start cutting!


Step 3: Mark Your Walls


Draw a vertical line on the wall for your first strip of paper to meet, but not cover. Do not rely on the accuracy of ceilings, skirting, or door frames, as they will often be at a slight angle.


Step 4: Use Adhesive


Most papers now are paste the wall, so check wallpaper instructions. Add paste to the wall or to the wallpaper, depending on the wallpaper type. Allow the wallpaper to sit for about 8-12 minutes if paste the paper, before pasting to the wall—the time will depend on wallpaper type, and how humid the room is.


Step 5: Start Laying Wallpaper


Start your strip by pasting a small piece of paper to the top corner so its easier to attach the rest. From this point, the best rule of thumb is to follow the instructions that come with your wallpaper. Following the manufacturer’s advice is the surest way to make sure the application method is correct for your requirements.

Where do I buy excellent wallpaper?


If you’re still on the hunt for beautiful and unique wallpaper, Allium Interiors has the best wallpaper collection NZ has to offer! Browse our excellent collections, including a huge array of Designers Guild wallpaper, characterised by their bright, clear colours, neutral softer shades, floral prints, and fashionable plains and textured wallpaper designs. We also feature a collection of Cole and Son wallpaper which comes in incredible designs representing the styles of the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries. Allium Interiors feature just a small taste of what these brands have on offer; get in touch with us and we can order in and source sampling for you for more wallpaper designs.


Explore our wallpapers online, or visit our Allium Interiors Newmarket store to find the perfect wallpaper designs for you! All the best on your wallpapering journey!