Posts Tagged ‘thinner’

Different Runs – Different Materials

February 25, 2023
Due to a mix-up in terminology, the homeowner originally received just four single rolls (two double roll bolts ) of wallpaper .  They needed eight total single rolls (four doubles ), so two more double roll bolts were ordered.  Being unable to get the same run number , we anticipated a slight difference in shade .  But didn’t expect that the two new bolts would be thinner than the two original bolts . 
What the heck is up?! 
The selection book says this is a non-woven product, and a paste the wall installation method .  Yet the label on both the original and the new rolls says to paste the paper.  Even more puzzling, the instruction sheet included inside the rolls says that it’s  non-woven material , and to paste the wall. 
It’s important for the installer to know what material he’s working with, so I needed to know if this was PTW or PTP .  Usually, non-woven paste the wall are thick and hard to tear , due to their 20% polyester content .  The fat roll felt and acted like a non-woven .  But the thinner roll was thin and crispy and easy to tear.  I sure thought it was a paper material , which would require a different installation technique .  In recent months, I’ve had this same manufacturer send several rolls of the a particular pattern , but some were non-woven, and some were paper.  So I thought we might be experiencing this again.  It’s important to know what you’re working with, because different materials require different installation techniques.  If a DIY ‘er follows the instructions to paste the wall , but it’s actually a paste the paper material, he’s going to encounter a whole lotta mess – and ruined paper . 
Here I used my 24” wide straightedge to tear off a strip of wallpaper from the roll of thin material.  This answered my question.  See the little fibers ?  Those are indicative of non-woven papers, and their polyester content .  Once I saw this, I was certain that it was, indeed, a non-woven material / paste the wall . 
So this material was easier to hang than traditional papers, because no need to paste , book , and let sit for a few minutes.  There are other pluses, too, to NW papers, and most of us professionals like hanging them.  But I wasn’t 100% pleased with the thin version of this non-woven material.  For one thing, its stiff, crispness made it difficult to manipulate, and prone to crease . Also, notice the splotchiness of the paper.  This showed up on the dry paper, right off the roll.
But paper that has been pasted and hung on the wall showed even more splotches .  This is scary, because there is a issue called blushing or staining , where the paper looks like it’s wet , but never dries out.  Do a Search here to learn more.   This happens mostly with non-woven papers , and is tied to certain types of paste .  Which is why I don’t use those pastes!  So curious as to what is causing this slight discoloration.
I believe the spots were just due to moisture .  As I worked my way across the wall and time went on, the paper I had hung first had a chance to air out and dry.  The blotches disappeared . 
I’m curious as to why the difference in material.  Maybe the manufacturer was using different factories?  In different countries? Or supply chain issues / material shortages meant that their usual substrate and inks were not available .  Or just trying to cut costs?  Saving money isn’t a bad thing.  But it is, if it cuts down on the product’s quality. 

What’s A “Fat Cut” ?

January 28, 2023
Here, I’m hanging paper from right to left, and have just come around a corner , which is in the center of the picture. You almost never wrap wallpaper around an inside corner . Corners are never straight , and the paper will buckle in the corner . And the edge will not be straight , nor plumb , and thus the next strip won’t butt up perfectly against it . And it’s also probable that the strip will torque off either up or down, causing your pattern to creep up or down the ceiling and floor lines.
The answer is to stop the strip of wallpaper in the corner , and cut a new piece for the subsequent wall.
But you can’t just trim tightly to the corner. Because most likely there will be gaps (remember I said that corners are never straight?), so some of the wall will show.
So what you do is wrap the paper just a teeny amount around the corner , and then overlap your new piece over that. This does mean that you will lose some of the pattern in that overlap.
I can’t stand that pattern mis-match, so most of the time, the way I do it, I’ll take a fresh strip of wallpaper for the next strip (to be placed on the left in the photo) and trim it so the pattern matches as perfectly as possible. But I’m getting ahead of myself. Back to the fat cut …
In the photo, I’ve cut my strip on the left 1/2″ wider than needed to fit this wall. I don’t want this 1/2″ of wallpaper under my overlapped new strip, because the leaves a visible ridge. But you do want a little underlap, because you need that to prevent a gap from showing in the corner.
So in the photo, I’ve trimmed off most of that 1/2″ and trimmed it down to an unnoticeable 1/8″. How on earth can you get a trim that thin and that consistent?!
I use this handy metal plate with a rolled edge (on the left).
This plate has bends and other edges of other thicknesses , rounded edges , won’t leave marks on wallpaper, so it has many uses.
Here’s a close up of the trim guide edge that allows for that 1/8″ fat cut .
Back side of the plate. (Don’t mind the blue tape – it’s just there temporarily.)
This edge is a little thinner , and would cut too close for use in a corner. But it does have a use if you need a trim in an area where you don’t want the paper trimmed tightly into the edge / corner.
You’re looking at where wallpaper meets crown molding. This join edge has gaps between the molding and the wall in some areas, and other areas have gunk and uneven areas. Trimming with my usual trim guide would cut too close and let some of these icky things show. So here I’ve used the thicker trim guide. As you can see, it allows the wallpaper to wrap ever so teeny much of a bit, so it covers the bad area, but doesn’t creep onto the molding.
Here’s another example, along door molding. At the top, I used my usual thin trim guide (see below). But this allowed a bit of a gap to show, due to decades’ build up of paint , caulk , dirt , etc.
So, midway, I switched to using the steel plate as a trim guide. This made the cut just fat enough that the wallpaper wrapped a hair and covered the icky area.
Here’s my usual trim guide . I’m guessing it’s about 9″-12″ long .
You can see that the edge is very thin . In most cases, this is ideal, because it allows for good, tight trims right smack into corners and edges.
That steel plate shown above was invented by a colleague in the Wallcovering Installers Association ( WIA ) . They are all the same length, but they come with three different degrees of angles , and can be used for lots of wallpaper installation tasks .
The colleagues has them manufactured and then sells them to us paperhangers . She sells other cool tools , too. If you’re interested in purchasing any of these , or seeing what else she has, go here or here
Her name is Eunice , so we call them EuniTools .

Protecting Woodwork from Paint Splatters

August 25, 2022
I hate seeing little speckles of paint on people’s floors or moldings . This happens when tiny splatters of paint fly off the roller cover . Sometimes the operator is just moving too fast , but some paints are thinner and prone to splatter than others. You can Search here to find pictures of what I’m talking about.
To prevent my wallpaper primer from landing on the floor , baseboards , backsplash , or, as in this case, wainscoting , I first cover the floor or vanity with dropcloths . Next I use these strips of thin , flexible , plastic-backed paper dropcloth material to cover anything that the dropcloths can’t reach.
I use push-pins to hold them in place.
I cut these strips from larger dropcloths. 8″-9″ wide seems to be about right to protect most baseboard heights and other surfaces , such as this chair rail wainscoting in a Houston Heights dining room .
Once I’ve rolled primer on the wall above, I remove the protective strips and use an angled trim brush to cut in the primer along the top edge of the molding .
wallpaper installer