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We have a ton of appreciation for great installers. Making beautiful work is only half the battle ~ beautiful installation is the other half. Once the mural passes out of our loving hands, we hope it lands in the hands of an installer like you, who cares as much as we do. On this page we've included guides, tips, and FAQs to help you successfully install our mural wallpaper.

GUIDES

Through years of working with excellent installers, like those of the Wallcovering Installers Association of America, we’ve developed some tips on installation. We hope you find them helpful, and we are always eager to hear your thoughts, comments, and concerns.

Click the items below for the PDFs.

FAQ

Here are answers to some common questions we get from paperhangers.

What is the substrate?

We print on a fine art canvas of excellent quality, made of woven poly/cotton.

Is it hard to install? Can I get paste on it?

Skilled installers tell us the paper goes up “like a dream”.  But still, it’s a fine art canvas, not a commercial vinyl. You’ll have to be careful not to get any paste on the front (if you do, wipe it off with water and a soft rag). And please don’t use any hard abrasive tools on it. A soft sweep is best. For seams, you’ll want a lot of fresh blades, as a dull blade might snag the goods.

Why don't you use non-woven/commercial vinyl?

We understand a lot of installers like those products because they are easy to cut and install. Yet we can’t use them for two very solid reasons:

1) We want our murals to last for generations. The canvas we use is meant to be archival for 50-100 years with the application of the supplied varnish. By contrast, most non-wovens and commercial vinyls are only designed to look good for the short-term, as they are full of OBAs (Optical Brightening Agents, like those used in white t-shirts). OBAs can fade and shift color over time, turning yellow like an old t-shirt.  That’s why we chose a chose a non-OBA canvas instead, and provide a UV protection varnish,  for greater artwork longevity.

2) We need a special canvas for our special, fine-art printing process.   Non-wovens and commercial vinyl substrates are meant for large-scale commercial solvent printing, which is generally of much lower quality than what we do.  It can’t capture the subtle colors and very fine details of our process. In fact, the only way we’ve found to achieve the quality we desire is to print the murals ourselves, in house.

How should I prime the walls?

You’ll find this info on the third page of the Paperhangers Packs (linked above). 

What type of paste do you recommend?

If strip-ability is not an issue, you can use a premixed clear vinyl adhesive like Roman Pro 838.
For semi-strip-ability some installers also like Roman Pro 880 strippable.
Lining paper or muslin is necessary to make the paper truly strippable without damage.

Is there shrinkage?

Because we mentioned a poly/cotton substrate, you might naturally be concerned about shrinkage. We like to help installers whenever we can, so we put this canvas through rigorous testing in our studio. We pasted it to the wall and varnished it, attempting to replicate the conditions on-site. We’ve noticed a 0% shrinkage rate horizontally and up to 0.5% shrinkage rate vertically on the wet goods (i.e. approx. 1/2″ for every 100 vertical inches, well within industry standards). That 0.5% seemed to happen nearly immediately, with no further shrinkage as it dried. As we do not manufacture this canvas ourselves (we print upon it) we cannot guarantee you will have the same results. However, we wanted to share what we observed, so you may plan accordingly.
You may wish to wait to trim the top and bottom edges until your glue sets up.  In our tests, the dry pasted canvas was stable and maintained all its measurements as the varnish was applied. Please note: the installer holds final responsibility for a successful installation.

Does it need a liner?

The canvas is almost entirely opaque, so you don’t have to worry much about pencil marks. It’s also thick and durable enough that you don’t necessarily need a liner paper. If you think a client might want to remove it later, intact, then a liner would be needed.

Does it have trim marks?

The artworks arrives on 36″ wide rolls of canvas. The artwork is printed at approx. 35.5″ with a .5″ over-lap, shown by trim marks. Our preferred install method is a double-cut on the wall, as we’ve seen installers get beautiful seams that way. However, you may also trim it dry on the table and use a butted seam.

Are there any margins or extra material?


On tailored runs, we include extra margins of about 2″ top and 2″ bottom, and 6″ on each end of the mural.  There is also approx. 6″ of material going into door and window frames, so you can shift goods on-site slightly. On straight runs, we add 2″ top and 2″ bottom to the chosen panel height, as helpful necessary margins for the installer.  If you are measuring the job for your designer PLEASE DO NOT ADD ANY EXTRA MATERIAL. We will add in the appropriate margins in our production process. If you add extra, it will throw off all the artwork arrangement, and you’ll end up cutting into scenery and possibly making the client unhappy.

Does it matter where I start hanging?

Yes, very much so. All artwork will arrive with a printed diagram showing what the boxes contain, and all the rolls are numbered to be hung in order. The starting point depends on the which of our layout methods the client chose.  The client has either pre-approved a layout, or will expect to help you lay it out on-site.
If it’s arranged in our simpler “straight run” process, you’ll get enough material to wrap the room.  You’ll work with the client on-site to decide where to hang each roll. The rolls are hung in numerical sequence, and you’d cut out the doors and window material.  
If the client opted for our “tailored run” mural, then the clients has pre-approved the layout. We’ve designed it for you with the least waste of artwork,  We print short rolls to go over the big doors and windows, or blanks. So it’s super important to check the layout diagram, or you’ll run short when you least expect it, like in the middle of a wall. We’ve numbered each roll to match the tailored layout diagram. If you follow it you should have no issues.

How do I put on the varnish? Why do I need it?

We recommend the varnish because it protects against possible UV fading, which helps make the artwork archival for up to 100 years.  It also helps prevent damage from abrasion, like an overzealous cleaning, or marks, like a child drawing on a wall.  The varnish wouldn’t exactly make the mural “scrub-able,” but it would improve your chances of being able to gently rub off marks.
You can apply the varnish as soon as you think the wallpaper paste is dry. You can put it on however you prefer, but we like using a brush and thin coats, which adds to the overall “hand-painted” look of the mural. Some installers use rollers or spray the varnish on. The installer is ultimately responsible for when and how to apply the varnish.

Will the varnish change the look of the artwork? Turn it shiny or yellow?

The varnish is a water-based, dead matte, non-yellowing product. It goes on slightly milky, but should dry clear. Sometimes clients worry that the varnish will change the look of the mural. It does darken it slightly, but we plan ahead for this in the printing. The mural is printed a tiny bit lighter than the sample you approved. The mural + varnish = the sample color.

Thanks again. Please let us know if you have any questions! We look forward to working together.

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