A quick and permanent way to decorate a door is to simply wallpaper it. But unfortunately, it isn´t always as simple to wallpaper a door as it may seem.
Depending on the material of the door the way you apply wallpaper changes drastically. I tried to wallpaper the door in my living floor in the past and I didn´t pay any attention to the material of the door before applying wallpaper to it and it didn´t work out well.
The wallpaper didn´t stick to the door at all. It took me quite some time to figure out why and how to properly apply the wallpaper to the door so that it would stick permanently.
I decided to write this article so that you don´t have to do as much searching as I had to do just to get some wallpaper to stick to a simple door.
Can You Wallpaper a Door?
Before we get started with how to apply wallpaper to a door let´s first clarify if it is even possible to wallpaper every door.
You can wallpaper a door without any problems but depending on the material that the door is made out of the way you have to wallpaper the door varies. But generally, you have to remove the door from its hinges, apply a primer to the surface of the door, and finally apply the wallpaper.
So you can generally apply any wallpaper to any type of door but the process as well as the choice of primer will vary depending on the material of the door.
But donut worry. I will go over every type of material that common doors are made out of so that you don´t have to look anything up individually.
Can You Wallpaper Any Door?
Before we get to the part where I explain how to apply wallpaper to most doors let´s first have a look at what kind of doors should not have any wallpaper applied to them.
You can´t apply wallpaper to any kind of door. If it is a regular door then you can apply wallpaper to it no matter what material it is made out of as long as the door is inside. If the door is outside then you should not apply wallpaper to it. If the door is a sliding door then make sure that you have enough space between the door and the wall.
There are also some special kinds of doors that you should not apply any wallpaper to before you are not absolutely sure that you don´t interfere with the functionality of the door itself.
These doors include sliding doors and spinning doors as well as automatic doors.
Make sure that the wallpaper has enough space to be applied.
For example, if there isn´t enough space between the door and the wall then a spinning door or a sliding door might not be able to open or close properly anymore.
If you want to wallpaper an automatic door then make sure that you don´t block any necessary sensors that might hinder the functionality of the door later on. Some automatic doors have to stay transparent in order to work properly because the sensors are sometimes located on only one side of the door.
But as long as you only want to wallpaper a regular door in your home then don´t worry. You should be just fine!
How to Wallpaper a Wooden Door?
Wooden doors are the most common in our homes today. Luckily they are probably the easiest doors to apply wallpaper to.
It doesn´t matter if your wooden door is solid wood or not the process of wallpapering them won´t change.
If you want an in-depth guide on how to properly wallpaper wooden surfaces then check my guide on applying wallpaper to wood right here.
Prepare the Wooden Door for Priming
Before you do anything you first have to remove the door from its hinges.
Depending on the Hinges you can either just lift the door out of its hinges or you actually have to undo one side of the hinges.
Either way, I would recommend getting some help with removing a door from its hinges.
Put the door on a plastic or on a paper surface in order to protect the floor from any glue or primer when you work on the door.
Apply Primer to the Wooden Door
This is where you have to be careful.
You need a primer that will work on wood in order to properly prepare the surface for a wallpaper application.
A primer prepares the surface for painting or, in our case, it will make the surface even and it will prepare it for the wallpaper.
A primer will stick very well to the surface it has been applied to so we use it as a medium so that the wallpaper won´t come off later on.
Apply the primer with either a brush or with a roller. I personally would recommend using a roller. This will ensure that the primer is being applied as smoothly as possible.
You can also use a spray primer if you want to. They tend to be slightly more expensive but they are also easier to apply and the result will usually be smoother than when you apply the primer with a roller or a brush.
You can get wood primer right here on Amazon or in your local Hardware store.
I personally prefer using Primer from Rust-Oleum for most of my projects.
Make sure that the primer has dried completely before you apply the wallpaper to it.
You should also apply multiple thin layers of primer instead of one thick layer.
Applying the Wallpaper to the Door
Now all that´s left is actually applying the wallpaper to the door.
You will need your wallpaper and some glue if you don´t have self-adhering wallpaper.
You will also need a pair of scissors and a plastic spatular or a fine paintbrush.
There are two main types of wallpaper. Self gluing ones and regular wallpaper.
It doesn´t matter which one you use you first have to cut it to length.
Measure the size of your door and cut the wallpaper to length. You can do that with scissors or you can use a guide and a cutter knife in order to cut the wallpaper as straight as possible. Both work equally well.
Once you have your wallpaper cut to length it is finally time to apply the wallpaper to the door.
If you are using self-adhering wallpaper. Then simply peel the first few inches of the backside of your wallpaper off and square the wallpaper up with the bottom part of the door.
Then gently press the wallpaper on the door and get rid of any air bubbles by pushing them out with the plastic spatular or a paint brush.
Slowly work your way up until you reach the top of the door.
If you missed any bubbles then you can still push them out before the wallpaper adhesive glues completely.
If you are using regular wallpaper then the process is much the same just that you apply a thin layer of wallpaper glue before you press the wallpaper down on the door.
You can either use regular premixed wallpaper glue or you can use wallpaper glue that has to be mixed with water before applying it.
Simply follow the instructions on the package of the glue to mix it properly.
The rest is the same as with the self-adhering wallpaper.
Just square the wallpaper up and slowly apply it by pressing the air bubbles out with a plastic spatula or a paintbrush.
And you are done!
Now all that is left is letting the wallpaper dry and then putting the door back in its place.
How to Wallpaper a Metal Door?
The process for applying wallpaper to a metal door is much the same as applying wallpaper to a wooden door.
The big difference is that you need to use another type of primer that works and sticks to metal.
It doesn´t matter if the door is made out of aluminium or steel the right kind of primer should work on any metal door.
I always recommend the Primers from Rust-Oleum as they are affordable and they always worked perfectly for me.
You can buy metal primer from Rust-Oleum in your local hardware store or right here on Amazon.
Hi, I am a passionate maker and professional prop maker for the entertainment industry. I use my woodworking, programming, electronics, and illustration know-how to create interactive props and puzzles for Escape Games and marketing agencies. And I share my knowledge and my experience on this blog with you so that you can become a maker yourself.