Experts share their top tips to use wallpaper in your home

Wallpaper is an easy way to add character to a dull room, to soften a harsh space with texture and to give your interior an instant facelift. But for the uninitiated, it’s hard to know where to start!

We spoke to Frank Tarulli, Director at Thomas Archer, and Aimee Tarulli, Interior Stylist at Thomas Archer and Archer Interiors, about their tricks of the trade.

“We’re finding more and more clients looking for ways to create interest and texture in their homes,” Frank says.

“Wallpaper can be a relatively inexpensive way of adding detail without the need for more permanent options like wall claddings or specialist finishes.”

Watercolour wallpaper
Image via Anewall

Aimee agrees wallpaper is a great option for renovators and people embarking on a new build as it provides bang for your buck.

“Wallpaper patterns can be brilliant at creating drama in a space.

“You can create a really big impact with relatively little fuss and low cost.”

What are the current trends with wallpaper?

Aimee says that while interior design trends are constantly evolving, walls are one of the main spaces where interesting textural elements can be used to create serious ‘wow factor’.

“We’re now seeing bold prints, tangible textures and even hard finished like cladding or moulding being re-created as wallpaper – often at a fraction of the cost of the real thing.”

dimensional wallpaper
Image via eurowalls

What are your ‘rules’ when it comes to using wallpaper?

Aimee warns the most important thing is to consider the end use of the space and choose a design accordingly.

“If the room is a tranquil setting, choose a calming pattern and colour – or even a lovely texture,” Aimee says.

“If the room is playful like a children’s room or play room you could go wild with bolder prints or colours. Ultimately there are no rules and the bonus is it’s easy to change down the track if you decide you want a different look.”

Frank only has one rule — always get wallpaper professionally installed.

“It’s trickier than it looks and it pays to get a professional wallpaper hanger to install it,” he cautions.

“Think about lining up patterns and cutting around power points. It needs to be perfect.”

Green and white wallpaper
Image via Etsy

How do you pick a wallpaper that won’t date too quickly?

“I always advise my clients not to worry too much about trends of things dating,” Aimee says.

“If you love it, choose it. You will always get enjoyment out of something you love, rather than choosing something based on its timeless appeal.”

That said, Aimee suggests that if choosing wallpaper for a children’s room, the best thing to do is avoid anything overly childish, and ‘style up’ instead.

“Selecting a pattern or design that will suit them as they grow is the best way to go,” she says.

“Look for something with a playful appeal that will suit them now but also in 5 years’ time.”

Nursery wallpaper
Image via Etsy

Temporary  vs. permanent wallpaper?

Aimee says it will ultimately depend on the design you are looking for.

“I would be led by a style you love and then work out its application and how best to install.

“The design options for permanent wallpaper are far greater. However, if you are looking for a quick way to update your rooms look without the worry of it being permanent, temporary wallpaper is quick and easy and will mean you can take it down yourself.

“Temporary wallpapers are great for kid’s rooms, and for people not yet in their forever home.”

Blossoms wallpaper
Image provided by Aimee Tarulli

Is it ever a good idea to DIY wallpaper?

Both Aimee and Frank suggest approaching DIY wallpaper with great caution.

“If you’re anything like me and suffer from little patience, it’s never a good idea to DIY wallpaper,” Aimee laughs.

“You need an incredible amout of patience and precision.

“I would only ever attempt it if the pattern was quite simple and the wall was free from power points or anything that would require the wallpaper to be cut in.”

Monochrome wallpaper
Image via Aspyn Ovard

Top 5 tips for for wallpaper installation

  1. If you decide to tackle it yourself, choose a simple design that will allow you to match up the sheets easily
  2. Lay the pattern out on a large floor space so you can plan the drops exactly
  3. Measure everything before you start to ensure the correct material measurements
  4. Apply the glue with a roller and lay the wallpaper out on a trestle table to make glue application easy
  5. Have patience!
Marbled wallpaper tips to use wallpaper
Image via Anthropologie

If you’re inspired to explore using wallpaper in your home, you might like to check out this A-Z of wallpaper textures.

Were you brave enough to DIY wallpaper? We’d love to hear your story in the comments below and hope these tips to use wallpaper help you!

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