How to wallpaper around tricky obstacles

Tackling those pesky doors and light switches that get in the way of your wallpaper is a common annoyance of all DIY interior designers. Whilst often small, these obstacles should never be underestimated, as failure to prepare could end in plenty of wasted paper and a bad finished look.

When you’re putting the effort into redecorating your home, you want everything to be perfect so you can be proud of it. You certainly shouldn’t let these unavoidable elements ruin all of your hard work. Here’s our guide to wallpapering around tricky obstacles.

How to wallpaper around light switches and plug sockets

Wallpapering around plug sockets and light switches may be tricky, but we’ve got a 5-step process that will give you a flawless finish.

  1. Turn off your electricity. We’ll be removing the light switch cover to tuck spare paper underneath and it is imperative that you follow appropriate safety measures.
  2. Hang your wallpaper as normal and gently lay the paper across the wall until you meet your light switch/socket. Let the paper hover over the socket and cut an X shape across the switch, but leave a cm gap before each corner of your switch.
  3. Cut off the extra flaps of wallpaper, leaving a border around your switch. Using smaller scissors, continue the original cuts to the corner. This should leave you with smaller flaps that you can peel back to reveal the full socket.
  4. Double check that your electricity supply is switched off and unscrew the switch setting. You don’t need to unscrew the switch all the way, just open it enough to slot the smaller paper flaps underneath.
  5. Screw the switch back in place and you’ll be able to enjoy a seamless finish. Many decorators choose to leave the paper flaps along the side of the switch, which is a good alternative for sockets that cannot be removed.

How to wallpaper around windows and doors

This tutorial is so easy, you can do this all by yourself. Wallpapering the architrave of your home takes patience and time, but here’s our easy 4-step guide to make it a little easier for you.

  1. Begin hanging your drop of wallpaper.
  2. Once you reach the corner of the architrave, tuck the wallpaper inwards slightly to create a dip. Don’t press on too hard as you may risk ripping the paper, particularly if it is wet.
  3. When you have smoothed the top down and eased away any air bubbles, you can easily cut away the excess, leaving a slight flap to run over. This extra wallpaper will help you to line up your next drop. Keeping your wallpaper straight on an architrave is notoriously difficult, but allowing the paper to run over slightly gives you a guide. Alternatively you could use a spirit level to create an accurate line to work with. 
  4. Continue hanging your wallpaper as normal and you will find that once you have reached the other end of your window, aligning your pattern correctly will be much easier.

Although it may take a little extra care and attention, once the job is finished you’ll have that beaming ‘I made this’ feeling. All your efforts will certainly pay off once you can relax in your freshly-designed room.