Some simple steps for easy wallpapering
Builder (and Great British Bake Off runner-up) Richard Burr reveals his top DIY papering tips.
1: Invest in the best
If you're only doing one wall, you can afford to spend a few quid on decent wallpaper. The idea of a roll costing upwards of £80 can be a bit intimidating, but see it as being art for your walls.
2: Do your maths
Wallpaper is usually 52cm wide and typically about 10m long, but it will always tell you the repeat length of the pattern. So, you may have a wall that's 2.5m high and 3m wide, and a wallpaper with a pattern repeat of 0.5m. Take 0.5 from 10 and then see how many times 2.6 goes into this - adding 0.1m on to the wall's length to allow for cutting-in the paper. This tells us we'll get three drops from the roll, so two rolls will be sufficient. It's always best to err on the side of caution with estimating quantities, especially if you're less experienced with wallpapering.
3: Get the right kit
You need a trestle table, so borrow one if you need to. You can buy a wallpapering kit for about £10 (try B&Q), including a pasting brush, hanging brush, long scissors, paper scraper, seam roller, plumb bob, etc. And, of course, you need wallpaper paste, a bucket and sharp Stanley knife.
4: Level and straighten
Use a large spirit level to identify where any dips or contours are in your wall. Measure out from the furthest point into the corner you identify and draw a straight line down the wall using a plumb line - this is a piece of string tacked to the wall or picture rail with the plumb bob as a weight on the bottom of it. Paper to this line and use your knife to cut the paper into the corner. Match the rest of the paper to this first drop and, if you're using a patterned wallpaper, match the pattern at your eyeline.
5: Unscrew sockets and switches
Unscrew sockets and switches from the wall and don't touch any of the wiring. Hang paper down to the switch pattress (the cavity that your switch/socket sits in). Use your fingers to feel the shape through the paper. Identify the corners of the pattress and use your Stanley knife to cut a cross-shape diagonally from corner to corner. Use your scissors to cut away some of this paper in the middle and you will be able to put your switch plate back on to this without tearing the paper. Screw this back on once the paper has dried.