Types of Wallpaper

Written by misty faucheux
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Types of Wallpaper
You need to consider the different types of wallpaper before purchasing one. (Electric wall plug at a green wall image by Anatoly Tiplyashin from Fotolia.com)

When choosing wallpaper, there are more things to consider than just colour and pattern. There are different types of wallpaper and each has a different type of coating. Some kinds of wallpaper were specifically designed to only go in certain areas of the house. Plus, some categories of wallpaper are easier to hang than others.

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Vinyl wallpaper is the most common type of wallpaper. You can hang this type of wallpaper in nearly any room of the house. It is usually waterproof, which makes it ideal for bathrooms and kitchens. You can clean vinyl wallpaper and it is easy to hang. When you wet this wallpaper, it does not stick together, which makes it easier to handle. Besides standard vinyl wallpaper, there is also vinyl-coated wallpaper, which has the same characteristics of vinyl wallpaper. The only major difference between the two types is that the vinyl-coated wallpaper is easier to remove from the wall.


Flocked wallpaper is a classic, patterned wallpaper type. It has a feltlike feel to it, and it tends to be busier than standard wallpaper. This wallpaper is not easy to clean and you can mess up the felt fibres if you try scrubbing it. You should only use flocked wallpaper in nonbusy or low-humidity rooms, including living or dining rooms. This wallpaper may also work in bedrooms, but you should avoid children's rooms.


Foil wallpaper is made of a metal material, usually silver, copper or gold. You can also have variations on these three main colours, and it adds a contemporary look to nearly any type of room. The material is very light and it wrinkles easily. This can make it difficult for you to work with it. Plus, it will show any imperfections in the walls, including bumps, scratches or holes. You should only use foil wallpaper sparingly. Foil wallpaper works best to accent a certain section of the wall as opposed to covering the entire surface with it.


Fabric wallpaper is made of real fabric. Sometimes, there is a laminate or other type of protective coating on it, but usually it's just exposed. Unlike most other types of wallpaper, fabric wallpaper is very difficult to clean. It will stain, and grease can become embedded in the fabric. Further, it is very difficult to hang. You have to smooth it out enough that it doesn't wrinkle when you hang it. But, you have to worry about stretching it out too much. You should only use fabric wallpaper is very low-traffic areas, like dining rooms.

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