Painting Over Wallpaper

Can I paint sheetrock with wallpaper already on it?

By Flo

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July 26, 20110 found this helpful
Best Answer

As other posters have said, if the wallpaper is in good shape you can paint over it-I have many times. I've even pulled off the 'came off easy' stuff (bubbled, peeling, etc), sanded the edges smooth, and applied a sponge effect paint job to camouflage the slightly uneven surfaces. Doing that saved me trying to get the 'there forever' stuff off, and looked pretty good. :)

The thing to be sure of is the type of wallpaper you are trying to paint over-is it paper, cloth, vinyl? Is it textured? All of those factors make a difference-painting over a textured wallpaper of any composition will only make the wallpaper a different colour-the paint WON'T fill in the textures to make it a smooth flat surface, for example. Painting over vinyl means using a different sort of paint than you would over most paper or cloth wallpapers-read the paint label to be sure it will adhere to the surface you are trying to paint.

I also suggest using a high quality primer appropriate to the material of the wallpaper as this will act as a slight fill if you've had to do fine sanding to blend edges where you've removed a bit of peeling paper. It will also neutralize any possible grease or other stain, and will prevent bleed-through of the wallpaper design you are trying to cover.

GrammyV has a good thought going-you might think about testing a small area first to make sure the paper is strong to enough to support the paint. Even applied in thin coats, wet paint will possibly do just what she warns about. This would happen in an older house with wallpaper dating back to the late Sixties; vinyl wallpaper became popular after that and it became REALLY popular in the Eighties.

And lol, if you get good at it, you can make spare money with your newly acquired skills-I did:)

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July 24, 20110 found this helpful

I wouldn't. The paint's wetness would cause the wallpaper to decompose or shred or come loose, none of which you want. I would try and locate a wallpaper steamer. I bought mine for 5.00 at a garage sale. It will take the paper out in sheets very quickly.

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July 25, 20110 found this helpful

Yes, if the wallpaper is in good shape. I would use Kilz primer on the wall first, then paint any color you like. I have done this many times and it looked fine.

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July 25, 20110 found this helpful

People used to paint over wallpaper all the time, when it was on the old fashioned plaster walls. They never used any kind of primer or anything, just plain paint. The paint back then was all oil based. You could try it on an area that isn't readily noticeable and see how it turns out.

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July 26, 20110 found this helpful

I wouldn't recommend it. Your wall will look so much better if you remove the wallpaper and then paint it. Otherwise, the paint may not adhere properly and will not look smooth.

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July 26, 20110 found this helpful

Many times this works out just fine. You have to test it first to see if the wall paper will come loose. Many times it does not.

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July 26, 20110 found this helpful

Some people do; some people don't. I wouldn't, because I think it would look tacky, and I think it would be a nightmare to remove the paper after that. But that is just my opinion. I have seen decorators do so on TV, but then I've seen them put moss on bedroom walls and paint upholstered furniture, too.

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July 26, 20110 found this helpful

Be sure and use an oil based paint for the 1st coat, and than you can use any paint. A water based paint will cause some papers to become loose. Try to pull it off if you can, usually it comes off easy. If not good luck with the paint.

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