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Wallpaper is a wall covering that adds visual and architectural interest. It comes in variety colors, patterns, texture. Can imitate natural materials such as stone, wood, brick or tile.


Material analysis

'MasterFormat Number: 09 72 00


Traditional uses

  • It is used to cover and decorate interior wall or ceiling.
  • There are two categories: residential and commercial. They depends on different weight, service ability and quality standards.

Emerging uses / trends

  • wallpaper tiles - 12"x12" paper tiles made from 100% post and pre- consumer wast paper
Wallpaper tiles

Finish and aesthetic qualities

  • Materials that wallpaper can be made out of: non-woven: paper, vinyl, cork; foil, grass cloth; bamboo, leather; woven: fabrics
  • Wallpaper can be plain (can be painted or with already applied color), or with patterns (printed, stenciled, flocked). Types of pattern matches:
    • Random match
    • Straight across match
    • Drop match
    • Free match

Surface forms / shapes

  • Wallpaper comes in rolls: residential usually in 15 yd rolls, commercial-use in 30, 45, 60 yd rolls
  • Very often sold in double rolls
  • Wallpaper usually consist of backing, especially in commercial-use (acrylic, paper backing), ground coat (it is the background coat laid on the surface which recives printed pattern, it also includes additives that improve quality of handling, application and durability), applied ink (different pigments)
  • The most popular wallpaper types:
    • Vinyl coated paper – decorative surface has been sprayed or coated
    • Coated fabric - coated or laminated fabric wall covering
    • Paper backed vinyl (solid sheet vinyl) – laminated to a solid decorative surface
    • Fabric backed vinyl (solid vinyl, paper) – woven substrate laminated to a solid decorative surface

Cost analysis

  • Price differ from manufactures

Material properties

Material performance

  • protect walls from most soiling materials
  • stains can be removed with water or light detergent

Dimensional and opening restriction

  • there are two most common sizes: "American" - 27 inches by 27 feet in lenght, "European" - 21,5 inches wide by 33 feet in lenght

Acoustic property

  • good sound absorption
  • wallpaper is often applied on accoustical panels or walls

Manufacturing process and assembly

  • Assembly: It is applied on the wall with wallpaper paste. The wall needs to be repair from any defects, needs to be dry and smooth. It will ensure that the wallpaper will adhere beter to the wall. It can be applied on drywall, plaster.

Environmental impact

Most of the environmental impact of wall coverings occure during the production process (gaseous emissions and effluent discharges from the printing and coating process). There is also the issue of off-gassing during and after a wall covering is insalled, as a result of used adhesives. During use, some of the wall covering continue to release VOC's, lowering of quality of indoor air. There is a lot of ecofriendly wall covering options, one of them from Pallas Textiles, where the DialTonas collection is made out of 50-70 percent of recycled telephone book paper. Another copany, Innovations in Wallcoverings introduced a line composed of either natural and renewable or recyclable materials, using water based inks.Wolf-Gordon Inc offers an Ecological Reclamation Program, where at the end of the product's useful life, the wall covering can be returned and used for some others uses.


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Life Safety & Rating Standards

Flammability rating


K.J. Nielson and D.A. Taylor, Interiors: an Introduction, McGraw-Hill Higher Education, 2002.


Student contributions

  • Kinga Rusiniak, Spring Semester 2010

See also

Similar materials

External links

Additional resources

Leading manufacturers

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