Trimming a Smidge on Faux Rock Wallpaper

Digital ImageThis single strip of paper hung from an outside corner on the left (not visible) to the inside corner on the right, next to the door molding. This paper is made to look like tiny pebbles, and is about 1/8″ thick and somewhat spongy, and has bits of real mica in it. I could line the edge of the paper up with the left corner of the wall, but wanted to avoid having to trim it at the inside corner on the right, because such a thick material sometimes pushes so far from the wall that when you trim it, you end up with a tiny gap between the paper and the wall. That’s hard to explain, but let’s just say that that’s why carpet layers put shoe-molding on top of the carpet at the baseboards, to cover the gap.

So I carefully measured the width of the wall from top to bottom, and precisely cut the strip of paper to that width. I tested the dry piece against the wall, and it fit perfectly.

Then I pasted the strip and took it to the wall. It did not fit! The strip was too wide! The moisture from the paste had caused it to expand. This surprised me, because most of these new materials are put on “non-woven” backings, which generally do not absorb moisture or stretch.

But this one did, so I ended up having to trim in the inside corner anyway. To keep paste from the paper from getting on the wall, I put a strip of blue painter’s tape along the edge, from floor to ceiling. Next, I used a stiff 3″ putty knife to push the material tightly into the corner, taking care not to smash the paper or flake off any of the pebbles.  Then I used a sharp razor blade to trim off the 1/8″ excess.

Once the tape was removed and the paper pressed into place, the corner was neat and tight.

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