The Most Frequently Asked Questions Answered

Wallpaper is one of the design features I absolutely love to use when decorating a space. I wanted to share with you how it works. DON’T BE AFRAID!!

Don’t forget if you would like some advice, book a discovery call with me to discuss all the services I offer and how I can help you with design decisions for your home.

Wallpaper is nothing new. The Chinese invented wallpaper. It is said they pasted rice paper on to walls as far back as the Qin dynasty. Smoother linen fibres later replaced rice, so that painting and printing on paper became easier.

Wallpaper vs. Removable wallpaper.

Which is the better product?

There are three main types of application to choose from.

Self-Adhesive Peel and Stick Wallpaper

Is designed to be removable and reusable however this is dependent on many factors.

Although it is designed for this, there is no guarantees. Reuse depends on factors such as how the installation was done in the first place, what wall preparation was done prior to install, how many layers of paint were on your wall, types of paints used and any other local environmental factors.

In most cases this type of paper can be be removed easily by slowly and gently peeling it away from the wall. This wallpaper type can be a wonderful option if you live in a rental space or plan to update your room again soon. Kindly note however that cosmetic damages may occur based on your initial wall preparation and skill of installation.

Ever since the peel and stick option became available, the consumer has been left with the predicament of figuring out which choice is the best choice. The best way to figure it out is to discuss the pros and cons of each type of paper and evaluate your individual situation

Pre-Pasted Wallpaper

This wallpaper already has an adhesive paste spread over the backing, so all you need to do is add water! While it’s not as messy as traditional paper, it’s also not as durable as traditional or self-adhesive paper.

The traditional pre-pasted wallpaper is a smooth paper product that has a wallpaper paste coating on its backing. This means that all you need to do is soak the wallpaper in water to active the paste which glues the wallpaper to your wall.

Pre-pasted wallpaper is easier for people who have never worked with wallpaper before. Unpasted wallpaper requires more work because you need to purchase the correct glue, apply the glue correctly (not too much and not too little), let it book the right amount of time, and then hang it.

Traditional Non-Pasted Wallpaper

 First let’s define the terms. When we say traditional, we’re not talking about your grandmother’s wallpaper. We mean the type of non-woven wallpaper that is not self-adhesive. Traditional wallpaper typically needs an adhesive paste applied onto the wall or paper before you apply the paper.

It is designed to last for many years – if you do need to remove it, this can be done by steaming and scraping it from the wall – you may wish to engage a wallpaper installation specialist for this. However, the newer non-woven products can be removed quite easily. The reputation of traditional wallpaper being difficult to remove is now a bit of a myth.

Non-woven refers to the backing of the wallpaper which contains a combination of natural and synthetic fibres. This makes the wallpaper more breathable, which in turn reduces the risk of mould. It also reduces the amount that the wallpaper will expand or contract to almost nil. The non-woven backing also allows it to be cleaned with a damp cloth. Finally, and this is a major benefit, it can be removed without the headache that previous wallpapers were known for.

Wallpaper Specifications

All strips or panels of wallpaper are 70cm (27.5 inches) wide. It cannot be altered due to production methods. Each panel is numbered (bottom of each panel; col 1, col 2, col 3 and so-on) so you know exactly how the wallpaper installation flows (I strongly recommend you lay out the panels and inspect prior to commencing installation).

Wallpaper heights can be customised to your requirements; however, the width of your wallpaper needs to be a multiple of 70cm due to the above reason.

For Teflon-based, low or no VOC paints, paints that are mould or stain resistant, (most modern paints) we recommend using a good quality primer before you install your removable wallpaper. Priming before you wallpaper will ensure the adhesive will not become compromised by paint repellents, chemicals/gasses and ensure correct adhesion and safe removal. If you are unsure, I suggest you call a professional for advice.


Removable wallpaper is not nearly as durable as traditional non-woven wallpaper. The peel & stick paper can peel, seemingly on its own and you will have to stick it back on the wall. The adhesion is nowhere near as strong as paste. It is more susceptible to heat, cold and hum idity, which makes it unworkable for humid bathrooms or hot laundry rooms. It may be a common issue that you’ll walk into a room and find the corner of your removable wallpaper hanging down or the entire panel on the floor. Its adhesive quality is affected by everything from the paint on your wall to direct sunlight, which makes its performance different for every environment. Traditional non-woven wallpaper just works, every time.

Deciding which wallpaper is best comes down to personal choice. If you have temporary tastes or a temporary living situation, removable may be something to consider. However, if you’re going to be staying put for more than a year and you want a quality product that you can count on, traditional non-woven wallpaper is the way to go.

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