Peel & Stick Wallpaper: Sweet Dream or Nightmare?

Last week I installed a lovely Watercolor Roses Peel and Stick wallpaper on a bedroom accent wall. The paper is from York Wallcovering.

At least half of the peel-and-stick installs we do are DIY rescue. Peel-and-stick wallpaper is being promoted and sold as the best option for renters and those who want to move with their wallpaper. However, for all the upsides, there are downsides. For the committed DIYer, peel-and-stick may be a fun weekend project. But for many, it can become a nightmare.

A Professional Paperhanger’s Tips on Peel & Stick Wallpaper

First, let’s look at some basic wallpaper facts:

  • all wallcoverings are removable – murals, traditional wallpaper, peel-and-stick
  • all removals will require some wall repair; the removability of the paper is dependent on the original paint and priming of the wall
  • if you are worried about your security deposit, plan on painting the wall after you strip the paper
  • compared to traditional wallpaper, peel-and-stick is far less forgiving especially when hung on top of bad paint

Peel-and-Stick Rescue Jobs

Peel-and-stick is marketed to be easy and DIY. For many this is not true. Oftentimes there are more headaches associated with it. An example I see frequently is ripping paint off the wall while trying to adjust a panel (which then shows through the paper).

Don’t be surprised if you find yourself needing the help of a professional paperhanger. There’s no shame in the wallpaper game.

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