Installing Wallpaper & Murals on a Ceiling

Wallcovering Products

You can use any of our wallcovering materials: Prepasted – Peel & Stick or Fabric Texture. The installation process requires that you compete with gravity so two installers are ideal, working as a team! To select a design go the search boxes and type Ceiling Wallpapers or Ceiling Murals – you could search Clouds also. There are hundreds of options. Alternatively go to 3D in Wallpaper Collections.

If your ceiling has cracks or imperfections, patch, smooth with sandpaper and then install Wall Liner. Once dry you can hang your Wallcovering or apply two coats of paint.

Measuring Ceilings

In most instances for easier installation, you will want to hang across the narrowest width of the ceiling. As an example, when ordering your wallcovering for a ceiling measuring 20’ x 14’, you will enter 20’ in the ‘Width’ box and 14’ in the ‘Height’ box. You will receive 10 panels each 2’ wide x 14’. (Note that you will need to add 2” to all these measurements to compensate for the possibility of the ceiling being out of plum.)

If for reasons of design enhancement you decide to wallpaper across the widest width – 20’, then when ordering you would enter 14’ in the Width Box and 20’ in the Height Box. In this case you will receive 7 panels each 2’ wide x 20’. (Note that you will need to add 2” to all these measurements to compensate for the possibility of the ceiling being out of plum.)

Tools & Equipment Needed

Scaffold Table. (Shown below). Ideally matching the narrower width of the room, and at a height that allows you to easily reach and apply wallcovering to the ceiling.

Clean Mop            scaffold table

Preparation & Planning

Make sure the ceiling is smooth and clean. Fill any cracks and imperfections; remove any flaking paint and sand smooth. Prime the entire surface and allow to-dry overnight. Study your wallpaper design and make sure that it best fits and enhances the entire area. Ideally you should install the wallcovering beginning at and away from the principal light source – probably a window. Turn off electric power and remove any light fixtures or air vents. Cover holes with masking tape.

Another consideration – If the ceiling area is not square, it is recommended to use the narrowest dimension as the ‘height’ of the ceiling paper. In other words, if the ceiling is say, 20’ x 14’, use the 14’ as the height. This will give you shorter panels and make it easier to install. Again make sure that this configuration best enhances the design you are installing. If your design incorporates large tiles or any such motif, you want to be sure that this pattern repeat falls roughly in the same spot at both ends of the ceiling.

Make sure that the measurements of your wallcovering panels are per your order and that the design matches exactly for all panels.

Installation Instructions

Depending on which material you selected the pasting system will vary –

A  Prepasted – Roll up the first panel, paste side out and submerge in a wallpaper tray filled with cold water for 20-30 seconds.  Remove from water and fold paste side to paste side and let sit for 3 – 4 minutes.  This allows the paste to fully activate.

B Peel & Stick – no adhesive application required – just gradually remove the paper backing as you smooth the wallcovering onto the ceiling.

C Fabric Back – Apply Strippable Ready-Mixed Wallpaper Paste to the ceiling as you progress – (Roman PRO-880 Ultra Clear Adhesive is a good option.)

  • A separate sheet will provide a colored picture of your Ceiling covering plus hanging instructions and the tools you will need.
  • Unwrap and roll out the Wallcovering.
  • Make sure you have all the panels per the measurements supplied when ordering.
  • Lay them out on the floor in installation sequence and check to be sure that the designs from panel to panel match perfectly.
  • Follow the paste options listed above.
  • Begin your installation from the ceiling section closest to the principal light source.
  • Snap a chalk line 23” out from the corner, across the ceiling securing the line with a nail at either end. (1” less than the width of your Wallcovering strip.)
  • This will act as guide when applying the first panel.
  • For the Fabric material, using a paint roller, apply the paste generously to the first 23” ceiling section.
  • As the paper or wall is pasted, fold each panel concertina-wise, paste to paste (for Prepasted). Lift the folded panel and align on the ceiling using a round tube supporting it.
  • Line up the outer edge of the wallcovering panel to the plumb line and the inner edge can be pushed tight into the corner with a papering tool and trimmed later with a knife.
  • Follow the same procedure as above for the remaining 24” panels, pasting each panel area separately and butt joining the seam of each panel. Do not overlap seams. Use a smoothing brush to evenly press the wallcovering panel to the ceiling.
  • Your helper using a long handle mop can support the wallcovering close to the ceiling just ahead of the installation.
  • Once completely adhered, trim all edges and around light fixture receptacles and ceiling vents. Ensure that the wallcovering is pushed tight into the corners and edges with your papering tool before trimming the excess.  Steel rules or spatulas are ideal for neat and straight cuts.
  • Replace your knife blade often – a dull blade may tear the wallcovering.
  • Once completed, sponge the entire surface to remove any paste residue on the surface.
  • Cut back the wallcovering that covers the light fixture outlet and any ceiling vents.