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Wallpaper is seriously back in fashion, but a lot of people end up slapping paint on instead because they're nervous about hanging it themselves and don't want to run to the expense of a decorator. We hope these simple tips will help to encourage you to give it a go - it really is straightforward, but you just need to be properly prepared.

To find out how much wallpaper you'll need, take a look at our calculation chart below.

STEP 1 - Choosing your design:

There are several factors to consider when you are deciding which wallpaper will best suit your room. It's always buy a roll and test out on different walls, and also see how it looks at various times of the day or night:

  • If you're decorating a ‘high-splash’ zone such as a kitchen, bathroom, playroom or nursery, you should consider a vinyl or washable wallpaper which can be easily wiped down. But most importantly, always use the correct paste as recommended by the manufacturer, as this will make the difference between successful hanging and a disappointing result.
  • Don’t shy away from plain colours - they can be used to great effect to set off the rest of the room. On the other hand, patterned papers make more of an impact. Try experimenting with a bold feature wall to give added drama to a room without huge outlay.
  • You need to take account of the kind of light you get in the room - darker rooms benefit from warmer tones. Also, don’t forget to look at the paper in artificial light, as this will differ from natural light.

STEP 2 - Getting Started – Preparation is the key:

Here's a checklist of the equipment you'll need to do the best job:

 Sturdy pasting or trestle table

 Wallpaper paste brush

 Decorator's smoothing brush

 Wallpaper edge roller

 Plumbline or 2m spirit level

 Paperhanger's scissors

 Bucket and sponge

 Pencil

 Steel tape measure

 Stanley knife

 Wallpaper

At the store check the batch reference number when purchasing rolls to ensure they are all a perfect colour match.

Every roll of wallpaper is 10m long 0.53m wide. Coverage will vary dependent on the pattern repeat that has to be matched up. (A large pattern may potentially have more wastage to allow for).

Have you got your wallpaper paste?

STEP 3 - Hanging time:

Simple Do’s and Don’ts


Use a plumbline for the first piece – don’t rely on the wall being straight!

Leave extra paper top and bottom

Line up the paper from top down

Start in a corner

Use anything sharp on the paper to smooth out any bubbles

Cut paper to exact size.

Wallpaper steps


1. Prepare wall by removing all traces of dirt, old wallpaper, loose paint etc. Try using Selleys Sugar Soap as a solution to wipe down walls before wallpapering.  Wall surface should be rubbed down with fine sandpaper to create a 'key'. Absorbent surfaces, i.e. new plaster should be 'primed/sized' using a good quality primer/sealer following manufacturer's instructions. (The Warehouse stocks a range of these products including Selleys) Lining paper should be hung horizontally using a ready mix 'tub' adhesive. Allow it to fully dry out before hanging. DO NOT hang any wallcoverings on a wall with a history of damp.

2. We make every effort to ensure that our wallpapers are perfect, but variations in shade or pattern may occur. BEFORE HANGING please inspect each roll before cutting and check that rolls are undamaged, the batch numbers are all the same for each design and that the pattern, colours and edges match correctly.

3. Mix wallpaper paste according to instructions on the packet –ensuring there are no lumps. Generously paste adhesive from the centre out, ensuring edges are well covered. Fold paper, adhesive side in, and allow to soak until pliable, (normally 4-5 minutes).

4. Position the paper, using a plumbline for the first piece (walls are not always straight). Do not overlap, use butt joints. Carefully wipe of any excess paste from the face of the paper immediately with a clean damp sponge. To minimise the risk of shrink back we suggest that the wallpaper be allowed to dry out naturally, we therefore recommend that any heating is turned off in a room until this has taken place.

5. After hanging 2 or 3 lengths, inspect the results carefully to ensure that no shading or other faults are apparent.

6. Finish the job…and enjoy the compliments about your new décor.

Note: We cannot accept claims for consequential loss in respect of defects apparent prior to hanging. No claims in excess of one roll can be allowed for defects which are visible at the time of hanging

Wallpaper Calculator

Standard wallpapers come in rolls approximately 10005mm long x 530mm wide

The following chart will help you estimate the number of rolls you need.

Figures indicate the approximate number of rolls required. Please note pattern repeat may affect these numbers, a large pattern may requre additional allowance.

                 Distance Around the Room (mm)  - doors & windows included

Wall Height
9140 10360 115800 12800 14000 15240 16450 17650 18850 20100 21300 22550 23750 24990 26200 27400 28650 29870
2050-2200 4 5 5 6 6 7 7 8 8 9 9 10 10 11 12 12 13 13
2200-2350 5 5 6 6 7 7 8 8 9 9 10 10 11 11 12 13 13 14
2350-2500 5 5 6 7 7 8 9 9 10 10 11 12 12 13 14 14 15 15
2500-2650 5 5 6 7 7 8 9 9 10 10 11 12 12 13 14 14 15 15
2650-2800 6 6 7 7 8 9 9 10 10 11 12 12 13 14 14 15 15 16
2800-2950 6 6 7 8 8 9 10 10 11 12 12 13 14 14 15 16 16 17
2950-3100 6 7 8 8 9 10 10 11 12 13 13 14 15 13 13 17 18 19

Note: Standard wall heights for plaster board in New Zealand are 2400 / 2700 / 2700 / 3000 / 3300 mm