dry bar & wallpaper

I’ve been rather excited for this project and reveal! But oh so nervous to make a decision on what to do with the space and to-do-it-myself! I’ve been conjuring up ideas for this space for a while and procrastinated on actually putting it together even longer. There were so many times I wanted to call up an expert to put up the wallpaper, but I didn’t … and I’m happy I didn’t!

One of the reasons we bought our house was the love for the built-ins. In our living room, we are reinventing one of the built-ins as a dry bar.
Here’s the original, before we moved in:
We first wanted to add a backsplash to the space. We played with a couple ideas of putting the backsplash throughout the space or just at the base. We found a great backsplash with a lot of different grays and stainless steel and decided we would do the base only.  This seemed like the best option for the space and for what we were trying to accomplish. Then I was on a mission to find a fun pattern or paint color for the shelves. I first tried Benjamin Moore Dragonfly AF-510 but it was hideous.  So hideous I didn’t even take a picture.
For the backsplash, we bought the tile from Floor & Decor and the grout in Snow White from Home Depot. We decided to give the task to the pros and paid the door installers $75.00 to install the backsplash. Worth. Every. Penny.
Once that was done, it was my turn. I ordered the wallpaper and had to wait about a month for it to come in! Crazy! But it gave me more time to stress out (a little bit more) about what the heck I was thinking when I decided to DIY the wallpaper.
This was the weekend though: Wallpaper 101!
Tools I used:
  • Scissors
  • Soft wall brush
  • Flat tool (to smooth out the wallpaper)
  • Tape measure and ruler
  • Level
  • Pencil
  • Premixed, undiluted, clear vinyl adhesive paper
  • Utility knife
I referenced the Schumacher Screenprinted Wall Paper Instructions.
Start by preparing the surface for wallpaper. There was paneling within the shelves so I filled it with wood filler, sanded the area, and painted the surface with primer. I washed off the surface with soap and water before applying the wallpaper.
Once the surface is prepped, cut the wallpaper to size. Leave about 2″ on each end to adjust for trimming. I left a little less just because I wanted the pattern to continue from each shelf, seamlessly. I put a “T” for top on the back of each piece and indicated which shelf I wanted each piece to be placed. (i.e. TA, for Top Shelf Piece) I recommend marking the wallpaper; it was such a time and sanity saver! Take the time, I’m telling you!
Apply wallpaper paste, being careful to cover all the edges. Fold each end of the strip toward the middle, paste sides together, aligning edges carefully so they do not dry out. Roll the folded strip as you would a loose newspaper, again being careful to keep edges aligned. Allow the folded and rolled strips to “relax” for 2-3 minutes. (this may vary with the type of wallpaper you are working with.) Do not skip this step.  Also, make sure to immediately wipe off any paste you get on the front side of your wallpaper. This will eliminate any chances of the pattern getting ruined.
After letting the paper relax, bring to the wall and hang. Carefully smooth air pockets, wrinkles, or excess paste from center of the strip towards the edges using your flat tool.
Trim excess at floor and ceiling with a utility knife: use a new blade for each cut. Be sure to wipe off any excess paste from the surface of the strip with a damp sponge immediately. Any residual paste may cause damage to the printed surface.
Repeat the procedure with the next strip, sliding it into position with the edge butted up against the preceding strip. Do not overlap seams.
And Repeat. Repeat and Repeat. Full coverage pattern “book” (adhere) in about 10 minutes. (Again this will vary depending on your wallpaper.) Yes, I did the cabinets, too!! It’s so fun to see the pattern continue to each area. Success!
I used this picture for inspiration to organize my glassware: found on Pinterest.
Here’s the before and after together!
And close-ups.
This was a great project, and if you are looking into wallpapering something yourself… Do It! I takes a little time but the wallpaper is forgiving and you’ll do great!
I think I’ll have a little vino to celebrate my accomplishment.

3 thoughts on “dry bar & wallpaper

    • Thanks!! The wallpaper pattern is Schumacher Imperial Trellis in Charcoal, I’ll post a link tonight. I got it at my local wallpaper store (Texas Paint & Wallpaper) but you can order it online, too! It comes in a couple fun colors, too! Thanks for reading! :)

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