Posts Tagged ‘photo wall’

Berlin Wall Graffiti Wallpaper Today!

October 30, 2015

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Wow – isn’t this a cool wallpaper! This is a photograph of a section of the Berlin Wall, complete with graffiti. I hung this in a home office in a brand new, contemporary style home in Oak Forest, in Houston, and, boy – in a house with all white walls, it sure energizes the space!

It is produced as a photo mural by Photo Wall, and is custom made to fit this wall. It came in seven panels, with six of them being 17 3/4″ wide, and the last being a mere 2 3/4″ wide. I wish the homeowner had told me she was using a photo mural, because I would have liked to have helped her measure and order. It turned out that the mural was the proper height (including sufficient extra for trimming at top and bottom), but was a 5″ short for the width of the wall. (Note to self: Always have a professional measure the space, before ordering wallpaper.)

With a custom-made product, you can’t just go and order an extra piece that is 5″ wide. The pattern won’t match, the color will be off, and there will be a delay and possible extra expense in getting that last strip up. Ordering a whole new mural would be expensive, for replicating materials and labor.

So we opted to hang the mural in the center of the wall, splitting the difference and leaving 2 1/2″ of uncovered wall on either side of the mural. I suggested the homeowner have her carpenter apply molding around the edges, to look like a picture frame or window casing, and she liked that idea.

This mural was digitally printed, and came on a non-woven substrate, and was a paste-the-wall product. It was very difficult to get this stiff, plasticy material to wrap around the rounded, bull-nosed edges of the window, and I had to do some tricks with this mercifully forgiving pattern, to get the four corners to look good. I won’t go into all the details, but, bottom line, the window, and the room, look fantastic!

Last photo – I thought this was cute – Photo Wall even included a set of wallpaper installing tools, and even included a packet of powdered paste. They make a DIY-friendly* product, and are affordable, too boot. *Note: With these 12′ high walls, and that complicated window, this particular project would not be considered “DIY-friendly.”

Dry Hanging a Photo Mural

August 16, 2012

Re that photo mural by Photo Wall that I put up earlier this week, it was printed on what the manufacturer calls a “non woven” backing, which is quite a bit thicker and spongier than most traditional murals.

The instructions suggested pasting the wall instead of the back of the paper. I usually ignore these instructions and paste the paper, as with a standard paper. (Some day I’ll blog about my thoughts on “paste the wall” … not fond of it, for many reasons.)

Anyway, because this photo mural had a glossy surface, and because there was little pattern to hide flaws, I worried that pasting and then booking (folding pasted side to pasted side) might cause creases on the front of the mural.

So I went ahead and did the paste-the-wall technique, something I’ve only done a time or two previously.

It went well, surprisingly well. Since it was a simple accent wall, there were no toilets to paste behind and no cabinets or decorative molding to paste around, so pasting was fairly easy – although it meant extra trips up and down the ladder.

The mural panels unrolled nicely without creasing, and they adhered to the paste quite well, while still being able to slide around when I needed to reposition them. The seams butted together perfectly, and not too much paste got onto the edges, which was a concern of mine. The pattern match was spot-on, and the material absorbed the paste nicely without bubbling or swelling.

My only complaint is that the clay paste dried faster than I wanted it to. With the paste-the-wall technique, you paste a section the length and width of each strip, extending just a little beyond the width, to be sure there is paste at the edges of each strip. It was this extra 1/2″ or so that tended to dry befor I could finish hanging the first strip and get the next one to the wall.

It ended up looking great, and the homeowners are delighted.

Houston wallpaper hanger

I Almost Screwed Up Yesterday

August 16, 2012

I was hanging a photo mural by Photo Walls, a Swedish company.  It was a glossy surfaced photo printed on a “non-woven backing,” which is somewhat thicker and spongier than most murals.  We’re seeing more and more of these non-wovens, due, IMO, to manufacturers trying to go “green.”

The instructions called for a “low moisture” or “20% solids” paste….meaning, clay-based paste.  Clay is a paste I don’t like, but it does have its uses.  So on the way to work, I stopped at Sherwin-Williams and picked up a bucket of paste ($50 for something I will probably never use again), and then hit Home Depot for primer and other supplies.

While I was skim floating the textured wall to smooth it, I was mentally going through what other steps I would have to install this mural.  My mind went to priming.  Then it hit me – I can’t use my old standby primer with this installation – clay paste won’t stick to my oil based primer!  It will delaminate and simply fall right off the wall.

Aren’t I the one who blogged about it for a week when I ran into just this situation, back last November?  Good thing I remembered this before I started the hang.

While the mud was drying, I ran off to find a Sherwin-Williams in the neighborhood.  Their store brand wallpaper primer ($35 – I hope readers are getting a feel for the investment that a workman has in each job…and we ain’t even mentioning gas, advertising, tools, etc.) was water-based, and just what the paste manufacturer suggested.  It was very similar to something I used to buy occasionally from Wallpapers to Go.  It went on smoothly, no odor, no drips, and  dried quickly.

When it came time to hang, the primer worked great with the mural’s stock, allowing me to slide the panels around as needed, and holding the paper tight.  I did have a slight issue with lifting (the primer pulling away from the wall when I needed to repostion a sheet of paper), but it was one small area and didn’t cause any problems.

The finished job was super, and the clients loved it.