Making a Door Header Manageable


A header is a short strip of wallpaper that is placed over a door or window. These can usually be cut from remnants of paper left after the full-length strips have been cut.

In this case, the strip was going to extend about 3″ to the left of the door frame. This meant I would have to use a full 9′ strip, most of which would be hanging over the door and cut out and thrown away. That’s a lot of waste. It’s also very awkward to work with a narrow strip, because they like to twist off plumb and create a wavy edge that the next strip won’t want to butt up against.

My solution was to cut one short strip for over the door, and another full length strip to place to the left of the door. But I cut both strips vertically along a design element (a tree trunk). That kept me from having a big, unwieldy strip of pasty paper hanging against the door, and made the narrow strip going to the left of the door easier to handle.

Then I took the right side of the full-length strip which I had cut apart vertically (which might have been thrown in the trash), and placed it to the left of the previous strip. I trimmed the header over the door to the left in the same way, butted the previous strip against it, and this kept the pattern undisrupted.

I know this sounds complicated, and it did take some engineering and figuring out. But the bottom line is, I had manageable pieces of paper to work with, I kept the pattern intact, while saving paper by using scraps for the two headers, and by splitting one strip in two vertically and using both sides to cover the area between the two doors.

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