The Ultimate Guide to Installing a Wall Mural: From Preparation to Perfection

The Ultimate Guide to Installing a Wall Mural: From Preparation to Perfection

a stone effect mural wallpaper on a dining room

Table of Contents


Wall murals are a fantastic way to transform any space, adding personality and visual interest to your home or office. Whether you're a DIY enthusiast or a professional decorator, this comprehensive guide will walk you through every step of the wall mural installation process, ensuring a flawless finish that will stand the test of time.

Material Types

an image showcasing different types of wall mural; non woven, vinyle and textile fabric

Before diving into installation, it's crucial to understand the different types of wall murals available and their unique characteristics:

1. Vinyl Murals


  • Durable and long-lasting
  • Easy to clean
  • Resistant to moisture


  • Can be more expensive
  • May require professional installation for large areas

2. Paper Murals


  • More affordable
  • Easier for DIY installation
  • Wide variety of designs available


  • Less durable than vinyl
  • Can be damaged by moisture

3. Non-Woven Murals


  • Easy to hang and remove
  • Breathable material
  • Hides minor wall imperfections


  • More expensive than paper murals
  • Limited design options compared to vinyl and paper

4. Textile Murals


  • Adds texture and warmth to a room
  • Sound-absorbing properties
  • Unique, high-end appearance


  • Expensive
  • Requires special care and cleaning
image showcasing different types of mural fabrics

Preparation Steps

Proper preparation is key to a successful mural installation. Follow these steps based on your wall type:

For Painted Walls:

  1. Clean the wall thoroughly with a mild detergent solution
  2. Allow the wall to dry completely
  3. Sand any rough areas and fill in holes or cracks
  4. Apply a primer if the wall color is dark or the paint is old

For New Drywall:

  1. Ensure all seams are taped and mudded
  2. Sand the entire surface for smoothness
  3. Apply a coat of primer and allow it to dry completely

For Textured Walls:

  1. Remove as much texture as possible by sanding
  2. Apply a skim coat to create a smooth surface
  3. Sand the skim coat and apply primer

Installation Techniques

General Application:

  1. Measure and mark your starting point, typically in the center of the wall
  2. Cut your mural panels to size if necessary
  3. Apply adhesive according to the manufacturer's instructions
  4. Carefully position the first panel, smoothing out any air bubbles
  5. Continue with subsequent panels, matching patterns as needed
  1. Measure and cut the mural panel to fit around the window
  2. Install the top portion first, smoothing it out carefully
  3. Apply the bottom portion, ensuring a seamless match with the top

Working Around Electrical Outlets:

  1. Turn off power to the outlet
  2. Remove the outlet cover
  3. Cut an X in the mural where the outlet is located
  4. Carefully trim the excess material around the outlet
  5. Replace the outlet cover
installing a mural around the power socket

Installing on a Round Wall:

  1. Measure the circumference of the wall and its height
  2. Create a template using kraft paper
  3. Cut panels into smaller vertical strips (12-18 inches wide)
  4. Start installation at the most visible part of the wall
  5. Apply adhesive and hang each strip, overlapping edges slightly
  6. Trim excess material once dry
round wall wallpaper installation

Installing in a Corner:

  1. Measure and mark 1/2 inch less than panel width from the corner on both walls
  2. Install the first panel along the plumb line on one wall
  3. Trim the overlap, leaving about 1/8 inch
  4. Install the second panel on the adjacent wall, overlapping the first

Installing on Textured or Uneven Walls:

  1. Choose a thicker, more forgiving mural material
  2. Consider applying smooth lining paper first
  3. Use extra adhesive to help conform to the texture
  4. Work in small sections, using a brush or roller
  5. Take time to smooth out air bubbles and ensure good adhesion

Installing a Ceiling Mural:

  1. Enlist help for this two-person job
  2. Prepare your space and set up a sturdy scaffold
  3. Plan your approach (edge to edge or center outwards)
  4. Apply in manageable sections (3-4 feet at a time)
  5. Have one person support while the other smooths onto the ceiling
  6. Use a long-handled roller or soft brush to remove air bubbles

Installing Under a Window:

  1. Measure and cut the mural panel to fit around the window
  2. Install the top portion first, smoothing it out carefully
  3. Apply the bottom portion, ensuring a seamless match with the top

For a visual guide on these techniques, watch our mural installation video tutorial.

    Troubleshooting Tips

    Even with careful preparation, you may encounter some issues. Here are solutions to common problems:

    • Air Bubbles: Use a smoothing tool to gently push the bubbles towards the edges of the panel.
    • Misaligned Patterns: Carefully peel back the misaligned section and reposition it, using a seam roller for a smooth finish.
    • Peeling Edges: Apply additional adhesive to the peeling area and press firmly.
    • Wrinkles: Gently lift the wrinkled area and reapply, using a smoothing tool to ensure a flat surface.

    For more troubleshooting advice, consult our wall mural FAQ page.

    Finishing Touches and Maintenance

    To keep your wall mural looking its best:

    1. Allow the mural to dry completely before touching or decorating around it
    2. Use a soft, dry cloth to clean vinyl or non-woven murals
    3. For paper murals, use a soft brush or vacuum with a brush attachment
    4. Avoid using harsh chemicals or abrasive cleaning tools
    5. Touch up any small tears or scratches promptly to prevent further damage

    Learn more about mural care in our wall mural maintenance guide.


    Installing a wall mural can dramatically transform your space, and with the right preparation and techniques, it's a project that both DIY enthusiasts and professionals can tackle with confidence. Remember to choose the right material for your needs, prepare your wall thoroughly, and take your time during the installation process. With patience and attention to detail, you'll achieve a stunning result that will be the centerpiece of your room for years to come.

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