How To Hang Lining Paper

What Is The Best Way To Hang Lining Paper?

Lining paper can be hung in both directions, vertically or horizontally (also known as cross lining). If walking across a plank of wood in between two sets of ladders doesn’t sound good to you, then hanging the paper vertically is the way to go.

The reason many pros will hang paper horizontally, is to guarantee that the seams of the lining paper and seams of the wallpaper don’t coincide with each other. When this happens it can affect the visual appearance of the finish, and it can cause the paper to peel away from the wall.

Hanging Lining Paper Vertically

Lining paper is available in different widths. If you purchase lining paper the same width as your wallpaper, then you can begin by hanging a half-width of lining paper in the the place where you are going to hang the first length of wallpaper, and then continue with full widths across the rest of the wall. This should prevent both sets of seams from landing in the same place.

Mark Widths on the Wall

If your wallpaper and lining paper are different widths, a simple check to see if the seams will coincide is to mark both the lining paper widths and wallpaper widths on the wall.

illustration to show how to mark wallpaper and lining paper widths

If you want to make the process even easier, take a look at how easy hanging wallpaper is using WallpaperBuddy™.

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How to Hang Lining Paper Horizontally (Cross Lining)

illustration to show horizontal guide lines for lining paper

1. Create a Start Guide Line

You will need to create a ‘start guideline’ near the top of the wall, the position of which needs some consideration. What you are trying to avoid is having narrow widths of paper to hang at the top and bottom of the wall, as narrow strips are harder to hang precisely. This might take a little trial and error, marking the widths of lining paper down the wall with a pencil, until you find the correct place for your ‘start guide line’, which results in no thin strips of paper at the top and bottom of the wall. Once you have found a suitable place for this line, mark it on the wall the entire way around the room, using a spirit level and pencil.

2. Cutting your Lining Paper

Measure the width of the wall and add an extra 100mm to this measurement. This will allow for a 50mm overlap at the edge of each wall, that will wrap around onto the adjacent wall. These overlaps will be trimmed off.

3. Applying Paste

If you have ‘Paste the Wall’ lining paper, starting at your guide line, paste the wall directly below, slightly wider than the width of the lining paper. You don’t want to paste too much of the wall as the paste could dry out before you’re ready to apply the next strip of paper, resulting in a poor bond.

If you have purchased ‘Paste the Paper’ lining paper, then apply the paste to the paper and fold it in a concertina fold, leaving the paper to ‘book’ for the amount of time recommended by the manufacturer.

4. Walking the Plank

Set up two ladders with a plank of wood in between them that you can walk across. It is virtually impossible to hang the top strip of lining paper by unfolding one section at a time, then climbing down and repositioning the ladder further along the wall, ready for fixing the next section to the wall.

5. Hang the First Strip

Unfold one section of your paper and align with the top of your start guideline. Smooth this first section onto the wall, allowing for the 50mm overlap onto the adjacent wall. There will be some excess that overlaps the ceiling as well, this will be trimmed off also. Continue unfolding and smoothing one section at a time across the width of the wall. You will have another 50mm excess that wraps around onto the adjacent wall.

Handy Tip: When smoothing it is better to begin in the middle of the paper and smooth outwards to each edge. 

6. Smooth The Edges

Use a seam roller to make sure the edges are firmly stuck down and add more adhesive if necessary.

7. Create a Crease

Use a plastic smoothing tool or smoothing brush to push the lining paper into the corner of the wall, in order to create a vertical crease down the width of the paper.

8. Trimming the Paper

Pull back the paper from the edge of the wall and cut along the crease. The same will be done when hanging lining paper on this adjacent wall so that both pieces butt up against each other perfectly and don’t overlap.

When trimming the excess paper from the juncture of the wall and ceiling, you may find it easier to use a wallpaper edge trimmer and snap off knife, rather than pulling back the longer length of paper and cutting with scissors.

9. Next Strips

Hang the rest of the strips the same way as you work down the wall.


Lining Paper – FAQs

What is Lining Paper?

Lining paper simply put is wallpaper without any decoration. It’s designed to be applied directly to your walls and then overlaid with wallpaper.

Why Use Lining Paper? 

The main purpose of lining paper is to help even out the surface of your walls and hide any small imperfections, such as hairline cracks, or discoloration that may be present on your walls.

Can You Paint Lining Paper?

Yes you can. Lining paper is the perfect medium between wall and paint. It will provide you with a clean and smooth surface necessary for creating an excellent finish. If you are planning to paint the lining paper it is better to hang the paper vertically, as it is easier smoothing lining paper down the wall.

How Long To Leave Lining Paper Before Painting?

Allow 24 hours for the lining paper to fully dry before applying paint or wallpaper.

Should I Leave Gaps In Between The Lining Paper?

No, doing so will just cause you more work. Just follow the manufacturer’s instructions and ‘book’ the paper for the correct amount of time, and you will be fine.  

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