Trimming Along Bull-Nosed Edged Walls

A whole lot of new homes these days have rounded bull-nosed edges on their walls’ outside corners. These might be up to date and pleasing to the eye, but they are bugger-bears to trim wallpaper on.

For one thing, the paper is hanging over the edge, so you can’t see what you are doing or where you are trimming. Next, it’s impossible to get a correctly-positioned or straight cut – especially since you can’t see where you are cutting.

A solution to that is to use a laser level to draw a straight line that you can trim against. The problem with that is that it’s highly unlikely that the wall edge will be perfectly plumb. So if you follow a plumb laser line placed against a wall edge that is slightly off-plumb … Well, you see where we are heading.

Wallcovering Installers Association to the rescue … one of my colleagues in a distant city invented this ingenious device. It is made from the very same “bead” molding that drywall guys use when installing these walls.

I cut one to a size that’s comfortable to fit my hand. Then I cut out notches at various places. Once the gizmo is placed straddling the rounded corner, I choose the notch that corresponds to the position that I want my cut to hit.

The inventor puts a trimming knife in the notch, and then trims along the edge of the wallpaper. But I find that maneuver to be awkward. And I fear that either the gizmo or my blade will slip, resulting in a crooked cut.

So I stick a pencil point into the notch and use that to draw a line along where the cut should be made. Then I remove the guide tool and then use a straightege and razor blade to trim along my pencil line. I have the flexibility to tweak things if anything should get off-kilter.

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3 Responses to “Trimming Along Bull-Nosed Edged Walls”

  1. Frank Schneider Says:

    Hi Julie, My name is Frank Schneider and I’m a relatively new wallpaper hanger (3 years going) who as recently moved down to Lafayette, LA from New Jersey. I learned what I know about paperhanging basics from Jim Parodi’s DVD set. I also got to know him a bit living not too far from his home in upstate New York (he has recently relocated to South Carolina). I discovered your website at the beginning of 2021 and have found it to be a great source for knowledge. Thank you for taking the time in your busy schedule to share your work, knowledge and vast experience via your website/blog. I will be working in a home with several bull nosed corners and was interested in the little trimming jig pictured in the blog above. Did you make that yourself or can it be ordered from the wallpaper hanger who thought it up? Best wishes and thanks again! Frank

  2. thewallpaperlady Says:

    Hi, Frank. Gee, sorry, I am just now seeing this. Welcome to the trade!

    You make your own widget. It is actually a piece cut from the actual plastic edging they use when drywalling those walls. You can get an 8′ one at Home Depot for less than $2. Then cut to size, and decide where to put your notches. I cut mine, but the guys like to use a blow torch. 🙂 The guy who invented it puts his blade into the notch. That doesn’t work well for me, so I use it as a guide for my pencil, draw a line on the wallpaepr, and then go back with a razor blade or scissors and trim.

    Think about joining the Wallcovering Installers Association. I have learned SO MUCH, and upped my skill set, by networking with installers across the country, and attending the annual conventions (COVID era conventions are on-line “tech summits.” I think Parodi was a member.

    At the very least, join our Facebook page. The WIA page is for paid members only, but the NGPP page is for anyone. But you do have to request to join. We talk about all sorts of things – techniques, business, etc.

    You might look up my friend Don Dye. He is working the Beaumont, Texas – Lake Charles area (right now working in Mississippi), and he loves to connect with other installers.

    Best wishes for your business, and keep in touch!

  3. thewallpaperlady Says:


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