Cutting Through Wallpaper: A DIY Guide for Electrical Outlets and Light Switches

Cutting Through Wallpaper: A DIY Guide for Electrical Outlets and Light Switches

Are you ready to elevate your wallpaper game? Today, we're diving into the nitty-gritty of making your wallpaper installation look super clean and professional, especially when dealing with those pesky electrical outlets and light switches.

The Outlet Conundrum

Outlets are a necessary part of our homes, but they can be a real pain when installing wallpaper. Sometimes we get lucky, and the wallpaper panel ends right at the side of an outlet. More often than not, though, an outlet or light switch ends up smack dab in the middle of a panel. If you've never installed wallpaper before, this could stop you in your tracks. But fear not! With a few tools and a dose of patience, you can handle this like a pro.

Tools of the Trade

Watercolor Meadow Mural sample laying on bed surrounded by other installation tools. Level, scissors, tape, and box-cutter.

Before we start, let's gather our tools:

  • Flat head screwdriver
  • Box cutter
  • Tape (to hold up the wallpaper temporarily)

Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1: Install Until You Hit the Outlet

Start installing your wallpaper as usual until you reach the outlet. Once you get to the outlet, use tape to lightly tape the remaining wallpaper up and out of your way. This gives you full, unobstructed access to the outlet.

Danielle installing panel up to the electric outlet.

Step 2: Remove the Outlet Cover

Use your flat head screwdriver to remove the screws that attach the cover to the wall. Once removed, you can take the top off the wallpaper to see where it will lie in proximity to the outlet.

Step 3: Make the Initial Cut

Danielle making a small slit where the outlet is located.

With your box cutter, make a small slit where the outlet is located. This initial cut allows you to better position the wallpaper over the outlet and ensure a snug fit.

Step 4: Trim to Size

Carefully trim the wallpaper to the size needed. You want the wallpaper to fit around the outlet without covering the metal or electrical parts, but still tight enough to be covered by the plate.

Step 5: Smooth It Down

Danielle smoothing the wallpaper down to the wall, taking care to remove any air bubbles.

Once you’ve made your cuts, smooth the wallpaper down to the wall, taking care to remove any air bubbles. Ensure the opening for the screws is clear and ready for reattachment.

Step 6: Reattach the Outlet Cover

Danielle putting the outlet cover back onto the wall.

Put the outlet cover back on top and screw it into the wall. It’s just that easy! The key is to anticipate this "hurdle" and have the right tools and patience. This isn't something you rush through; take your time to get it right.

Tips for a Smooth Installation

Take Your Time

Patience is your best friend during this process. Rushing through could lead to mistakes or a less-than-perfect finish.

Practice Makes Perfect

If you're nervous, practice on a small section of wallpaper first. Get comfortable with making precise cuts and handling the material.

Embrace the Challenge

Mural halfway installed on the wall.

Remember, dealing with outlets is just a small hurdle in the grand scheme of your beautiful wallpaper installation. Embrace the challenge, and you'll be proud of the results.

Click here to watch as we install a textured wall mural complete with a step by step of a electrical outlet: Watch Now


Wallpaper installation around outlets and light switches might seem daunting at first, but with the right approach and a bit of patience, it can be a breeze. So go ahead, tackle that wallpaper project, and enjoy the satisfaction of a job well done.

Still not convinced you want to try a wall mural installation? Click here to try out samples throughout your home. Even your light switches can get an upgrade: Try Samples

Happy decorating, and may your walls be ever stylish!

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