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Hints & Tips - Wallpapering

Wallpapering your dolls' house can at first appear a daunting proposition, but providing certain pitfalls are avoided it is really quite easy to do. Here are a few tips and hints to make your job easier and your results better.

Measure your room

Always measure your room carefully, to find out how many sheets of paper are required, before buying the paper. Remember - sheet sizes can vary.

Firstly measure the wall lengths of your room (usually 3 walls) and add them together to give a total length, i.e. a room that is 10 inches wide and 12 inches deep will give a total length of 34 inches (10 + 12 +12 = 34).

Next measure the height of the room - this will be important in determining how many drops per sheet you will get - lets assume it is 9 inches.

Write your calculations down on a piece of notepaper. This can form part of your "dolls' house log book".

Now select the wallpaper. Sheets of wallpaper come in different sizes, but for this example let us assume our chosen sheet is 16 inches wide by 24 inches high (height is the drop measurement).

For the room in our example the calculation is as follows:

Because the height of the wallpaper is 24 inches we will get 2 drops for our 9 inch high room - each measuring 16 inches in length. This means that we will have enough wallpaper to cover 32 inches of wall per sheet.

Therefore, to achieve the total length of 34 inches required we will need 2 sheets of this paper.

Always take care to note if the wallpaper has a repeating pattern as this may well affect your calculations. We would recommend that in order to cater for this, it is always better to over-estimate your needs.


Always buy extra (i.e. an extra sheet) in case of mistakes. Batches change and shades may vary. If you buy more later you may not get an exact match. Left over bits can always be used for other projects at a later date.


If you are lighting your house some preparations should be made before wallpapering such as:

  • If laying copper tape, lay the tape and draw a plan of the layout (for help with future connections and trouble-shooting)
  • If using the wire method, drill the holes and run grooves for the wires to prevent the chance of your drill slipping and tearing your newly hung wallpaper

Always paint ceilings before putting in wallpaper

Leave the fixing of all woodwork until after wallpapering (where possible), i.e. doors, stairs, mouldings such as skirting boards etc. This will help to hide any mistakes and gaps in the wallpapering. It is also recommended that paint and/or stain is applied to woodwork before fixing.


Always use wallpaper paste. This allows you to slide the paper into position, which cannot be done as easily if a hobby glue is used

If you are using copper tape for your lighting always use a "non-toxic" paste - copper can react to some toxins

Paste the wall not the paper - dolls' house papers are thinner than full size wallpaper and will stretch if they become too moist

For those small awkward areas which are difficult to work in, either:

Apply paper before construction
Carefully measure the appropriate areas and apply paper prior to assembly. NB ensure all joints are kept clear of paste and paper

Use a "card interface"
This is achieved by cutting a piece of thin card to the exact dimensions of the wall. Paste your paper to the card. Keep it flat until fully dried. Then simply fix your card to the wall, either by gluing or using double sided tape.

If, despite all these tips you would still prefer the professionals to help, please contact us and we can advise the best course of action for you

The "House Log Book"

When you first get your house make a list of all the measurements, exterior, individual room sizes, window and door sizes, etc. This can be kept as your "house log-book" and taken with you so that when you are in a shop it can help you select things for your house without the risk of buying something that is too big or small and help to avoid disappointment when you get home.


If you have any queries that have not been answered by this feature please contact us on

Tel: 020 8295 0688 or Fax: 020 8295 1061


We will do our best to answer your questions with the help of our own expert builder Dave "Dusty" Caswell.

If you need any more help or advice, or have any suggestions for topics you would like to see featured in the future, or you have your own hints and tips you would like to share with your fellow miniaturists, please e-mail us at:




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