Tips for Hanging Wallpaper on Rough Walls

Rough wall

Although not impossible, hanging wallpaper on rough walls or other specialized surfaces presents a variety of specific challenges. Uneven drywall surfaces are simple to patch and level to facilitate a successful application of wallpaper. For concrete block, brick surfaces or wood paneling, however, the traditional approach is insufficient to create an acceptable underlying surface. Specialized prep techniques can, in most cases, allow you to paper rough walls, but your choice of wallcovering will influence the ultimate outcome of your project.

Using Wall Liner

Wall liner, a revolutionary product designed to facilitate the application of wallcoverings to troublesome surfaces, will allow you to install paper on even the most challenging walls. Also known as lining paper or wallpaper liner, wall liner consists of thick, heavy strips of paper that are applied in much the same way as the wallcovering itself. Lining paper will facilitate the application of wallcoverings to wood paneling, block or brick walls or heavily damaged walls. It can, in most cases, even be used over old wallpaper, as long as it isn’t loose.

The Importance of Preparation

Challenging surfaces require even more intense prep than normal, with each type of surface requiring a different approach. For example, wood paneling requires an application of TSP (trisodium phosphate), followed by sanding and sizing. Block and brick require one or more coats of sizing. If deep grooves or holes are present, you may need to apply a skim or float coat. If you plan to use wall liner, follow the manufacturer’s directions for any additional preparation that may be required.

Choosing the Right Wallcovering for Rough Surfaces

Even with diligent wall prep and the use of lining paper, fine or delicate wallcoverings will not produce a good finished product, especially in solid colors. Many wallcovering types and patterns are better suited for this purpose. Paintable textured patterns, particularly those that are embossed, will hide a multitude of underlying flaws. Sculptured vinyl and commercial vinyl wallcoverings with fabric backing are ideal as well. Whatever product you choose, select a high-quality paper. The general guideline is, the rougher or uneven your wall surface, the better the quality of the wallcovering must be.

The knowledgeable and friendly customer service representatives at Wallpaper Warehouse will answer all your questions about wallcoverings and guide you in making the right selection for your specific needs. With hundreds of options to choose from, you will find everything you need to successfully wallpaper rough walls and smooth ones alike.

3 Responses to Tips for Hanging Wallpaper on Rough Walls

  1. Goke Ademola says:

    I recently rented a new studio apartment in Lagos, Nigeria. The room is really spacious, however, the walls are covered up in ceramic tiles from top to bottom. I think this gives the room an unattractive feel.

    Taking out the tiles may prove too costly, so I thought it may be a good idea to cover it up in wallpaper. I am just curious. is it possibly to paste wallpapers on ceramic tiles. What are the issues with doing this?

  2. sravs says:

    We have a old fireplace, which is white colored painted on old bricks. We want to change the look of it but neither we want to spend money nor we want to break it as it is of more work for us now.

    So we wanted a stone look for our fireplace. Saw some Peel and stick 3D wall panels but for these our fireplace must be flat, smooth and sleek surface. But our firplace is brick model and it’s uneven surface.

    Can you please guide how make it flat and smooth so that we can use peel and stick 3D wall panels.

    Thanks.

  3. Mark H. says:

    You could always try using spackling or Bondo to smooth out the walls prior to adding wallpaper. This is, of course, a more permanent solution, but it’s possible to remove later if desired, even if it might be tricky to remove (it’s not made to be easy to remove!)

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