Posts Tagged ‘instructions’

Defects in Today’s Wallpaper

May 26, 2021
Yellow strip along right side of strip at top of photo. Grey strip just to the right of my pencil in the second photo.

Horizontal yellow stripe about center in this photo
Hard to see, but this photo shows “ghosting” of the print from the instruction sheet showing through the surface of the wallpaper. The instructions had been rolled up inside the paper. Somehow, the ink transferred onto the wallpaper. This ruined about 2′ of the bolt of wallpaper – multiplied by three bolts.
Edges splayed / curled up, probably due to a trimming glitch at the factory. In addition, several feet of this affected area had a darker color – which would have showed up as a stripe along one edge of the wallpaper.
This Candice Olson wallpaper is made by York. York is normally one of my favorite brands. But today was disappointing.

Once I discovered these printing and trimming defects, I contacted the homeowner. After kicking options around, she decided to NOT have the wallpaper hung. Why spend all that money for paper and labor, and have a less-than-stellar result?!

She will present these problems to the company. There is a good chance that she can avoid defects in the replacement paper, IF she gets them to send a different run.

Here is another reason why I am glad she purchased from a “real” wallpaper company (in this case, she bought from Burke Decor), instead of a middle-man company such as Wayfair, Etsy, Ebay, and even Amazon.

A wallpaper-focused company will be able to ferret out problems. And they will be knowledgeable of Run Numbers and etc. So the replacement they send will be free of printing and other types of defects.

This wallpaper is by York, in the Candice Olson line.

Jungle Paneled Installation, Italian Product, for a Nursery

June 22, 2019


The top photo shows a sample panel of the wallpaper taped to the wall of the nursery. You can see the sharply sloping ceiling line to the right.

The mother-to-be fell in love with the jungle theme and the colors of this paper. She bought it on-line from an Italian company. Unlike most wallpapers that come in rolls, this product came in sets of panels, each of which was 27″ wide x 39″ long. In the second photo, you see the first three tiered along the left, and the next two strips positioned to the right. Other panels will be filled in above and below, and to the right.

Precious little information was available on how to install this product … and what there was came in Italienglish, which was little help. There was a brief on-line video, plus you could read the experiences of previous DIY clients in the customer reviews section. In such cases, you have to use the scant available information, along with your own experience, to decern an install method.

Turns out, this is similar to the old-school paper murals that come in panels and call for powdered paste. Except this company did not include paste (as most do), nor were the panels meant to be overlapped.

Luckily, I have sources for wheat, cellulose, potato starch, and other powdered wallpaper adhesives. These are mixed up on-site, are less aggressive as far as stickiness goes, and are more wet than the pre-mixed pastes used for most installations today.

More wetness, along with the particular type of paper these murals are printed on, means that the paper will absorb more moisture and can expand substantially. This is why most of these types of murals are designed to be overlapped at the seams. The seams of this product, however, were meant to be butted … which means that when that paper dries, it could shrink, and that could result in gaps at the seams.

Because the mural came in panels instead of continuous strips, the edges of the strips could not be lined up exactly perfectly, neither vertically nor horizontally. And this was exacerbated because each panel absorbed paste and expanded differently from the others, so there could be a difference in width or height between panels of as much as 1/8″.

This meant that there were some pattern mis-matches between strips. It also resulted in some seams overlapping. I left before the paper was completely dry, but I imagine there are areas where the some seams gap, too.

But I tend to overthink things, and fret about minute details that most people never see. The bottom line is, the accent wall looks fantastic, and will set a theme for the new baby’s room.

Note that this paper gets really wet when it’s pasted, and so you see a bit of blotchiness in the photos. This will disappear and the paper will be much lighter and brighter when it’s all good and dry.

The product is also not really technically a “mural.” But it comes in panels like many murals do, so I’m using that term for simplicity’s sake.

Besides the special paste, because this product was printed on a rather flimsy paper, I used a softer brush to apply the paste (as opposed to a roller), and I used a soft, long-bristled smoothing brush.
The video showed the guy using his hands to attempt to smooth the paper into place. If you looked closely, his finished wall had a lot of bubbles and wrinkles. My long soft smoothing brush was much more appropriate.

Conflicting Instructions

January 19, 2016

Digital Image

Digital Image


I know – the print is too small to read. But perhaps that is a good thing.

You see, the manufacturer of this wallpaper has provided instructions that don’t make sense.

In one paragraph, he tells the wallpaper installer to paste the paper, fold it (book), and let it sit for 10-15 minutes.

But in the next paragraph, he says it’s equally O.K. to paste the wall and then apply the dry wallpaper directly to the pasted wall.

Folks, that don’t make no sense!

If the wallpaper has been pasted and then set aside for a period of time, it will absorb the paste, soften, expand, etc., and that step generally prevents stretching or bubbling on the wall.

But dry-hang products are not supposed to stretch or expand or bubble, so you can put paste on the wall rather than on the back of the paper, and take the dry paper directly to the wall.

These instructions apply to two different products, and the pasting methods are specific to each specific material, and cannot be mixed.

Me thinks that this manufacturer (like many out there), is good at designing pretty patterns, but has no clue as to what makes a good wallpaper, and has even less of a clue as to how to hang it on a wall. Me thinks he has snooped around the websites and instruction sheets of other wallpaper manufacturers and then “borrowed” some of their terminology, and simply tossed it into his own instructions, hoping to cover all the bases.

I hang wallpaper every day (almost), and I have the experience to know how to paste and handle this particular product. But the poor DIY’er who buys this wallpaper and tries to hang it by following the instructions, will be confused, and may well end up with a mess on his wall – wrinkles, bubbles, poor adhesion, yada.