Paintable Wallpaper: 3 Easy Solutions to Get the Look You’re After

Painting your house, even just a room, can be a pain. Especially if your walls have already painted, wallpapered, or, even worse, wood paneled. But don’t worry, we’ve learned a few tricks that will have your home looking fresh and new without the pain and hard labor. 

1. Paint Over Wallpaper

The longer wallpaper is on the walls, the trickier it can be to take down. If the walls themselves aren’t in good shape or if you think there’s water damage, there’s the chance you could even pull of the drywall. But, if the wallpaper is in good condition, you’re in luck because you have the option to paint right over it with paintable wallpaper. That’s right, assuming the majority of the wallpaper is still adhered well to the the wall there aren’t any huge risks, and it means there won’t be agonizing hours of peeling tiny strips of paper off the wall. Just be sure that you consider your options carefully, because painting over bad wallpapering can cause the adhesive to loosen and potentially peel away from the wall. 

If you decide to paint over wallpaper here some things to look for:

  • Check to make sure there aren’t any gaps between the seams and that none of the paper is coming loose before prepping your walls
  • Add a thin line of caulk to the perimeter of the walls (at the floors and ceilings) to help keep the paper from peeling
  • Spackle will help smooth out any texture that’s on the paper so it won’t come through the paint
  • Sand the seams — even if they aren’t noticeable now, they can show easily through the paint
  • Use an oil-based primer before applying an oil-based paint to decrease the chance of bubbles and peeling 


2. Pre-Painted Wallpaper

This fix is perfect for anyone who is still paying rent or just hates the idea and expense of painting. TemPaint is the perfect solution if you’re looking for a “wallpaper” that looks and feels like paint. It comes in tons of colors, so no matter what your style, you’ll be able to find something you love. Unlike paint, it doesn’t require much prep work, although you should be sure to measure your walls so you order the right amount. Once the rolls arrive and you’re ready to get started, just wipe down the walls, peel, apply and smooth. And even though TemPaint is meant to look and feel like a permanent solution, it’s more easy to remove than paintable wallpaper when it’s time to move out of your apartment or your taste changes. 



Paintable Wallpaper Infographic

3. Creative Solutions for Covering Wallpaper 

Now for the most temporary “fixes”. Sometimes it just doesn’t make sense to completely change a room (even if it’s pretty easy with peel-and-stick products). Maybe it’s budget concerns or maybe you know you won’t be staying there long enough to make it worth the effort. Whatever the reason, there are a lot of ways to personalize your space: 

  • DIY paint canvas — great for the artsy folks! Go all out and actually paint something, or just stick with monochromatic colors to keep it easy. You can even build the frame yourself 
  • Decals — these can feel a little college-y, but there are definitely more refined ones. There are even sites that let you create your own.
  • Washi tape — this can be especially fun in kids rooms because it’s something they can design themselves. Go for stripes, small “confetti” dots or make up something original
  • Weave/fabric/rugs — there are so many ways to use fabric on walls. Stretch it over a canvas for a new art piece or hang it as “wallpaper”. Rugs and other weaves can also serve as makeshift headboards
  • Reclaimed items — flea markets are full of fun old pieces! A few of our favorites that make a statement on the walls: old doors (think headboards), empty picture frames (get a bunch in various sizes/styles to hang) and mirrors (great for making small spaces seem bigger).

Do you have more quick fixes to spice up your walls? Share them with us here!

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