How to Install Fabric Wallcovering

Instead of traditional wallpaper, use a favorite fabric to add texture and pattern to your walls.
Midcentury Modern Sitting Room With Stone Fireplace

Midcentury Modern Sitting Room With Stone Fireplace

A rustic stone fireplace can't compete with the retro style in this sitting room. Graphic wallpaper and a starburst clock surround the fireplace, while midcentury modern chairs and a round coffee table form a small fireside seating area.

Materials Needed:

  • bolt of backed fabric
  • wallcovering paste
  • fabric scissors
  • smoothing tool
  • bucket
  • tape measure
  • pencil
  • notepad
  • spackle
  • spackle knife
  • wallcovering primer
  • paint roller
  • paint pan
  • pan liner
  • roller cover
  • sanding block
  • damp rag
  • paint brush
  • utility knife

Measure the Walls

Use tape measure to determine height and width of space for fabric. Jot measurements down for reference.

Choose Fabric

Bring swatches of assorted backed fabrics home from fabric store and tape up on wall using painter's tape. In order for fabric to adhere to wall, it must have fabric or acrylic backing. Fabric without backing can be custom-backed by local fireproofing and backing shops. After a few days, decide which fabric works best in space. Keep in mind patterns with large repeats will require more yards, therefore will be more expensive. Smaller prints or textured fabrics require fewer yards, but might not be as impactful.

Choose Fabric for Wallcovering

Choose Fabric for Wallcovering

Bring swatches of assorted backed fabrics home from fabric store and tape up on wall using painter's tape. In order for fabric to adhere to wall, it must have fabric or acrylic backing. Fabric without backing can be custom-backed by local fireproofing and backing shops. After a few days, decide which fabric works best in space. Keep in mind patterns with large repeats will require more yards, therefore will be more expensive. Smaller prints or textured fabrics require fewer yards, but might not be as impactful.

Prepare Walls

Comb walls with smoothing tool to get rid of any bumps. Fill nail and screw holes with spackle using a spackle knife. Once dry, lightly sand residue, then wipe with damp rag. Apply a coat of wallcovering primer using paint roller. Allow three hours for primer to dry.

Prepare Walls With Wallcovering Primer

Prepare Walls With Wallcovering Primer

Comb walls with smoothing tool to get rid of any bumps. Fill nail and screw holes with spackle using a spackle knife. Once dry, lightly sand residue, then wipe with damp rag. Apply a coat of wallcovering primer using paint roller. Allow three hours for primer to dry.

Cut Fabric

Roll fabric out on long, flat surface. Refer to dimensions, and use tape measure and pencil to mark height on fabric. Allow 4 extra inches to account for waste, then cut using fabric scissors.

Cut Fabric With Fabric Scissors

Cut Fabric With Fabric Scissors

Roll fabric out on long, flat surface. Refer to dimensions, and use tape measure and pencil to mark height on fabric. Allow 4 extra inches to account for waste, and cut using fabric scissors.

Paste the Wall

Dip paint brush in bucket of paste, and spread paste on wall starting from the top down.

Attach Fabric

Hold each strip of fabric up to wall allowing overlap to match up the repeat. Press against glue, and smooth out air bubbles with smoothing tool.

Cut Excess

Use utility knife to cut excess from corners and around outlet holes.

Cut Excess Fabric With Utility Knife

Cut Excess Fabric With Utility Knife

Use utility knife to cut excess from corners and around outlet holes.

Keep Reading

Next Up

How to Make a Fabric and Evergreen Holiday Swag

Instead of a traditional evergreen Christmas wreath, dress up your front door with a holiday swag made from fresh greenery, fabric branches and glittering pinecones.

How to Install French Drains

Divert groundwater from the basement or foundation with the help of gravel and fabric.

How To: Installing a Fire Pit

A backyard gets more warm and hospitable with a stone firepit.

How to Install Crown Molding

Install crown molding to add visual interest and value to your home.

How to Install Tile in a Bathroom Shower

Use these step-by-step instructions to take your shower from drab to fab by installing Italian marble tile.

How to Make a Fabric Pouf Ottoman

A multipurpose decor item, this fabric pouf can be used as an ottoman, extra seating for guests or as a coffee table with a tray on top. Use a fun, patterned fabric that matches the other decor in your dorm room.

How to Install Snap-Together Laminate Flooring

Installing snap-together flooring allows anyone with moderate DIY skills to create a beautiful new laminate floor.

How to Install a Planked Wood Ceiling

Add architectural detail and rustic, farmhouse charm to a builder basic bedroom with a tongue-and-groove planked wood ceiling. This is also a great way to cover up dated, cottage cheese ceilings or a sloppy drywall job.

How to Install a Carpet Runner on Stairs

A runner can add a splash of color to any room and make stairs more comfortable to walk on.

How to Install a Marble Tile Backsplash

Boost your kitchen's wow factor in a three-day weekend by installing a timeless Carrara marble backsplash in an updated subway tile pattern.

On TV

Flip or Flop Vegas

7:30am | 6:30c

Flip or Flop Vegas

8:30am | 7:30c

Flip or Flop

9:30am | 8:30c

Flip or Flop

10am | 9c

Flip or Flop

10:30am | 9:30c

Fixer Upper

11am | 10c

Fixer Upper

12pm | 11c

Fixer Upper

1pm | 12c

Fixer Upper

2pm | 1c

Fixer Upper

3pm | 2c

Fixer Upper

4pm | 3c

Fixer Upper

5pm | 4c

Fixer Upper

6pm | 5c

Fixer Upper

7pm | 6c
On Tonight
On Tonight

Hawaii Life

8pm | 7c

Hawaii Life

8:30pm | 7:30c

Hawaii Life

9pm | 8c

Hawaii Life

9:30pm | 8:30c

Caribbean Life

11pm | 10c

Caribbean Life

11:30pm | 10:30c

Hawaii Life

12am | 11c

Hawaii Life

12:30am | 11:30c

Caribbean Life

2:30am | 1:30c

Hawaii Life

3am | 2c

Hawaii Life

3:30am | 2:30c

Shop This Look

Found a living space you love in HGTV's Photo Library? Get the look in your own home with products from Wayfair.

Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss HGTV in your favorite social media feeds.