How to paint wallpaper seams

Updated February 21, 2017

Wallpaper comes in an infinite array of colours, patterns and even textures, and you can spice up your room decor by hanging wallpaper on one or more walls. Because the strips of wallpaper are large and unwieldy, you may find small gaps where the strips of wallpaper meet. You can't move the wallpaper once it adheres to the wall, but you can camouflage the seams with carefully applied paint.

Take a scrap of wallpaper, if you have one, to the paint-mixing department of a hardware or paint store. Ask the paint technician to match the predominant colour in the wallpaper. Alternately, bring paint samples home and find one that most closely matches your wallpaper's predominant colour.

Paint a very thin line of latex or acrylic paint with a small artist's brush directly on the visible seam between the strips of wallpaper.

Smooth the paint in the seam with your finger. This will spread the paint evenly over the seam. It's OK if a little bit gets on the wallpaper.

Wipe lightly over the seam with a barely damp sponge to remove the excess paint from the wallpaper. The paint in the seam will remain, although some may wipe thin in spots. Let the seam dry.

Repeat the painting, smoothing, wiping process if you can still tell where the seam is at a glance. A second coat of paint will more completely cover the gap.


Keep a clean rag handy to wipe off your fingers after smoothing the paint into the seam. Wear old clothing. Instead of a sponge, you can use an absorbent, clean rag that you dampen and wring out. Rinse your sponge, or rag, frequently.


Always wipe off the seam immediately after smoothing the paint into the gap. Use only a latex or acrylic paint. An oil-based paint may stain your wallpaper.

Things You'll Need

  • Latex or acrylic paint
  • Artist's brush
  • Sponge
  • Clean rags
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About the Author

Glenda Taylor is a contractor and a full-time writer specializing in construction writing. She also enjoys writing business and finance, food and drink and pet-related articles. Her education includes marketing and a bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Kansas.