Even the most thoughtfully designed and decorated home will occasionally need a little bit of a refresh. This might mean changing your wall art, rearranging the furniture, or giving a slightly outdated room a fresh coat of paint. One other area that often deserves some esthetic enhancement can be your closets. One of the best ways to really punch up a closet’s style and give it a touch of true artistry is to redecorate the walls with some stunning patterned wallpaper.

Though it’s not necessarily the easiest thing to do. Like a lot of great decorating ideas, the devil can be in the details. Though not to worry! If you’ve been thinking about wallpapering one or more closets with decorative patterns, then this article has got every square inch covered.

Getting Started By Emptying Out & Organizing

Before you can lay down the first strip of wallpaper, you will need to empty the closet out, and get everything organized. It helps to do this a few days, or even a week in advance to let you familiarize yourself with some of your closet’s important details.

Things like ambient and direct lighting, shadows in corners, and trim styles might all influence the type of wallpaper pattern you choose for your closet. Not to mention, it typically takes longer than you might think to do things like remove shelves, uninstall closet poles, and dust every square inch.

While you are at it, take the time to consider updating some of your storage options. Perhaps things like seasonal items can be conveniently stored in stackable tote bins or moved elsewhere.

You should also consider temporary organization solutions. A lot of closet wallpapering jobs take more than one day, even for an accomplished do-it-yourselfer. Setting up a temporary closet pole or hanger station will let you still get at your everyday essential items while keeping them from turning into wrinkled piles heaped on your bed.

Swatches, Swatches Everywhere, Now Which One To Pick

The next step in the process is to choose the right wallpaper pattern for your closet. When you are at the hardware store, it can be easy to feel overwhelmed by your options. Ideally, you want to choose 5 to 10 swatches to take home with you.

You can then hold those swatches up in various locations to get a better idea of how they will look. Make sure to also hold the swatches in different lighting conditions to make sure it has the look and feel that you truly want for your closet. You might find that one wallpaper pattern you love in the brightest part of the closet, might look dingy and depressing in a dark corner.

Consider Lighting Upgrades

One of the best ways to maximize the look of your closet’s new wallpaper and to give you a more functional closet where everything is easy to find, you should consider upgrading your lighting. This is likely the ideal time since you already have everything out of the closet. Lighting options to consider include:

  • Track lighting
  • Recessed lights
  • LED directional lights
  • String lighting
  • LED colored lighting
  • Under Shelf LED light pods

Simple things like adding soft white light fixtures and colored LED lights can not only brighten the tone of your closet but can also enhance the color and shades of your wallpaper.

Consider Updating Your Shelving & Hanger Space

With the closet emptied out, you can also take some extra time to consider how you want to update any shelves, rods, or other hanger spaces. Even something as seemingly simple as a pull-down shelf or a pull-down hanging rod will need to be accounted for when you are planning the size and installation of your new closet wallpaper.

Borders & Accents

There is no hard and fast rule that requires you to use full sheets of wallpaper to cover every square inch of your closet. Sometimes a patterned strip or run of wallpaper is all you need to bring some added life and visual interest to your closet. Add in a fresh coat of paint, and just about any old storage space can become vibrant.

Choosing Peel & Stick VS Traditional Wallpaper

The truth is traditional wallpaper can be messy. The process of applying the glue and worrying about drips can be a chore. This usually calls for laying tarps or other types of temporary floor coverings. Getting one out of alignment from the walls or the rest of the sheets can be frustrating.

The alternative here is to use the new “Peel & Stick” wallpaper. Also known as “Removable Wallpaper” it has a backer with an adhesive to it, that is a little more than reminiscent of the “Contact Paper” your grandmother used to use to dress up the interior of her kitchen cabinets.

When it comes to choosing between the two, it’s worth bearing in mind that Peel & Stick wallpaper might be removable, but even when left in place, it still has a fraction of the life of traditional woven wallpaper. Woven wallpaper also tends to have a greater depth of color, while also playing better with varying light conditions.

Measure Twice & Cut Once

Most closets have things like trim boards, ceiling cove, door frames, and even decorative accents like rosettes. All of which needs to be accounted for before you peel off the first backer or slather in the first strip of water & glue. It is much easier to carefully measure the characteristics of each wall and feature to cut the wallpaper before applying it. If you try to cut it on the fly, you will often find yourself with uneven margins near door frames, trim board, and cove.

Keep It On The Level

Making sure that each strip is meticulously level is also a key component of any quality wallpapering job to be proud of. It helps to keep a job or a drop away roll at hand. You can use this as a visual guide as you apply each sheet.

It can be tempting to try to rush through the lineup process and simply overlap the wallpaper sheets at each run. This might seem like an easy fix, though you will likely find yourself with noticeable vertical ridges in the wallpaper. All those fractions of an inch can also add up, leaving you with an awkwardly short void when you get to the corner.