How to measure for wallpaper

When looking at wallpaper, one of the very first questions asked is, “how much do I need?” Although it can seem daunting, figuring out the number of rolls is actually quite simple with our easy to use wallpaper calculator.

For a quick estimate, use our wallpaper chart below. To calculate the number of wallpaper rolls needed, take the distance around the room in feet and then take the height from floor to the ceiling. Pair your measurements up on the chart below to determine the number of rolls.

For example, if a room was 24 feet with 8 foot ceilings, you would need roughly four rolls of wallpaper. Remember, if you have a chair railing or wainscoting, adjust your wall height according by measuring from the rail to the ceiling.

Wallpaper Roll Chart Estimator

How to measure for wallpaper

If you’d like to calculate further by hand, taking into account doors, use the instructions below, or if you prefer, use our friendly Wallpaper Calculator, and we’ll take care of the math for you!

How To Calculate Wallpaper Without a Wallpaper Calculator

  1. Determine the square footage you wish to cover. To do this, first measure the height of your walls. Use the tallest wall as your wall height. Now measure the width of each wall you wish to cover and add them together.
  2. Multiply the total height in feet and the total width in feet of your room. This will give you the total square footage.
  3. For each standard door subtract 17 from the square footage. (For any other size door subtract the square footage of the door from the total square feet).
  4. Find the pattern repeat. This can easily be found on the product page of any item on our website.
    • If the repeat is small meaning the repeat is 12” or less including no repeat, divide the square footage by 25.
    • If the repeat is large meaning the repeat is 13” or more, divide square footage by 21.
  5. Your total will tell you the amount of single rolls you will need. Remember, wallpaper is sold as a double roll bolt. When ordering 6 single rolls, you will receive 3 double roll bolts of wallpaper.

How To Calculate Grasscloth Wallpaper Without a Wallpaper Calculator

Typically, non-printed grasscloth is 36” wide & 24’ long, and each double roll has three 8’ long pieces. If ordering a grasscloth wallpaper, use these instructions.

  1. Follow steps 1 – 3 above.
  2. Once you’ve determined your total square footage, divide by the total square feet of one roll to determine how many rolls you need. The total square foot per roll can be found on the product page on any item on our website.

How To Calculate Peel and Stick Wallpaper Without a Wallpaper Calculator

If ordering peel and stick wallpaper, follow these instructions.

  1. Follow steps 1 – 3 above.
  2. Once you’ve determined your total square footage, divide by the total square feet of one roll to determine how many rolls you need. Most of our peel and stick wallpapers are 28.18 sq feet, but every item on our website lists the square feet on the product listing.

As a final tip, it’s better to have extra wallpaper to hand to account for trimming or additional papering. If you find yourself with leftover paper after hanging, use it to line drawers or for other decorative projects around the house.

How to measure for wallpaper

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Wallpaper has never been simpler to put up, but figuring out how many rolls to buy can be a challenge if this is your first time. The key is to take careful and accurate measurements, because once you know how much surface area you need to cover, your local home improvement store or wallpaper dealer can help you calculate how many rolls you will need.

Pick one corner of the room and measure along the wall to the next corner.

Write down the number of feet, rounding up to the nearest foot if need be. For example, if your wall is 10 feet 6 inches, round up to 11 feet.

Measure the remaining walls, remembering to round up to the nearest foot.

Add all of the totals together to get the number of feet you need in width.

Measure the tallest wall from the floor to the ceiling if the room is not a simple cube.

Measure the shortest wall from the floor to the ceiling.

Subtract the second number from the first to get the total height of wallpaper needed.

Multiply the width by the height and to get the total number of square feet you need to cover the walls.

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  • Measure along the floor when determining the width of the walls to help you ensure that the tape measure is level.
  • Don’t deduct spaces for closets, doors or windows unless you are buying very expensive wallpaper on a strict budget because it’s better to have extra rather than not enough.

Emmy-award nominated screenwriter Brynne Chandler is a single mother of three who divides her time between professional research and varied cooking, fitness and home & gardening enterprises. A running enthusiast who regularly participates in San Francisco’s Bay to Breakers run, Chandler works as an independent caterer, preparing healthy, nutritious meals for Phoenix area residents.

If you’ve landed on this page then you’re trying to find out how many rolls of wallpaper you need for a particular room. And we understand, it’s very confusing! 10 different websites will give you 10 different calculations.

However, we have a shortcut for all of that. There is an industry standard that will almost never fail in quickly and easily finding out how much wallpaper you need.

First, ask yourself if the pattern you want has a repeat. Yes or no.

If the answer is no, then you do this:

  1. If the width is 27 inches then you divide the square footage by 63 to find out how many double rolls you need.
  2. If the width is 20.50 inches or 21 inches then you divide the square footage by 56 to find out how many double rolls you need.
  3. If the with is 36 inches (only natural grasscloth patterns are this size) then you will divide the square footage by 72 to find out how many double rolls you need.

How to measure for wallpaper

If the answer is yes, then you do this:

  1. Take your square footage and divide by 42 to find out how many double rolls you need.

Now, we know you’re thinking that it can’t be that difficult but it is. If there is any type of repeat, just divide by 42 to figure out how many double rolls you require.

Historically wallpaper in the United States has been priced in single rolls and packaged in double rolls. We, ourselves, are in the process of moving everything to double roll quantities (as of 10-14-20) but if you’re used to single rolls then just divide by 21. It ends up being the same thing.

Example #1 No Repeat

You want to hang a vinyl faux grasscloth wallpaper on a wall in your master bath. This is a random match with no repeat. The width is 27 inches.

How to measure for wallpaper

The wall is 8 feet high x 10 feet long.

8 ft x 10 ft = 80 square feet

In this scenario, you do 80 ÷ 63 = 1.26

You round up so you will order 2 double rolls (4 single rolls if that is what you are used to).

Example #2 Repeat

You want to hang a gorgeous turquoise damask wallpaper on a wall in your master bath. This is a straight match with a 20.90 inch repeat. The width is 27 inches.

How to measure for wallpaper

The wall is 8 feet high x 10 feet long (same as before).

8 ft x 10 ft = 80 square feet

In this scenario, you do 80 ÷ 42 = 1.90

You round up so you will order 2 double rolls (4 single rolls if that is what you are used to).

The quantity didn’t change much because the wall is small but the larger the area, the more rolls you will need for a pattern with a repeat due to the waste involved with matching up the pattern.

And that is it. You really do not need a fancy calculator. For residential patterns you take your total square feet and divide by 63, 56, 72 or 21. Those are the four golden numbers needed to figure out how many double rolls you need and when used we never have any problems.

How to measure for wallpaper

Measuring for wallpaper may seem like a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be.

Wallcovering professionals use several tried-and-true strategies that don’t require a degree in engineering or math. Follow these tips to become an expert at wallpaper measuring!

Pro Tip #1: Plan Ahead

It will pay off in the long run to make a liberal estimation of your wallpaper needs before you buy.

You don’t want to find yourself near the end of the installation process and be short. Dye lots can differ from day to day, so even if you order from the same source, you may not be able to match the color exactly. Plus, it’s nice to have extra on hand if you need to patch or cover damaged areas in the future.

Pro Tip #2: Match Batches

When wallpaper manufacturers print a specific design, they use newly mixed ink colors. The run number on a package tells you which lot it was printed from. When you buy your paper, try to make sure that each bolt number matches.

Pro Tip #3: Measure Correctly

Deciding how much wallpaper you require is actually quite simple to calculate if you follow these steps:

  • Measure the width and height of each wall.
  • Multiply the height and width together to get the total square footage.
  • Add the square footage of each wall to get your total area.
  • Subtract the square footage of openings like doors and windows.

Pro Tip #4: Account for Pattern Repeats

Wallpaper with a pattern requires an extra step to estimate the number of pattern repeats for the wall height of your room. The higher the number, the more wallpaper you will need, while the smaller the number, the less wallpaper you will need.

Find out how often the pattern repeats and then divide the height of the wall by the inches between the patterns. If you end up with a fraction, then round up.

For example, if you have a 96-inch-high wall and a pattern repeat of 18 inches, then you will divide 96 by 18. That will yield 5.33 repeats, which you will then round up to 6.

Pro Tip #5: Get the Right Number of Rolls

A single standard roll measures 36 square feet, but you must subtract about 6 square feet for cutting and trimming, so plan on a net of about 30 square feet per roll. A European roll measures 29 square feet, so count on getting about 25 square feet of paper from those.

Determine how many single rolls you will need by dividing the total square footage by 30 for standard and 25 for European paper.

Remember to always round up if you get a fraction.

Finally, remember that wallcoverings are almost always priced for a single roll but come packaged as a set of two rolls. Be sure to verify this before placing your order, as you don’t want half as much as you need (or twice as much!).

At Wallpaper Warehouse, our expert staff is standing by to answer any questions you may have, and to help you select the design you want and order the quantity you need to finish the job right. Call us today and let us help you with measuring for wallpaper.

How to measure for wallpaper

Ready to hang your wallpaper? We make it easy to transform your space with simple installation instructions.

If new to wallpaper, when selecting a paper take note of the type of wallpaper you are using as installation can slightly vary. The main difference is prepasted wallpapers have dried paste incorporated into the back surface that is activated with water, and unpasted wallpapers require wet paste to be applied during installation. Based on which type of wallpaper you are installing the instructions may differ, but the general technique is the same.

Just remember, these four simple steps: Measure, Cut, Activate (with either paste or water) and Hang. That’s it!

PREP THE WALL

Before you begin installing your wallpaper, prepare your surface and clear the work area. Make sure electrical outlets are off and remove wall fixtures. For best results, clean and properly prepare all wall surfaces. Old wallcoverings and paste residue should be removed.

Next, prepare your wall with a premixed universal wallpaper primer. Priming the wall is an important step when hanging unpasted wallpaper as it allows for the wallpaper to remove easier. If installing York’s Sure Strip Wallpaper or Peel and Stick Wallpaper, a primer is not required.

MEASURE & ACTIVATE THE PAPER

When ready to begin, measure the wall length, then add 4” and cut your wallpaper. You want the paper to overlap at the ceiling and the baseboard by approximately 2”.

Quick Tip: Be sure to allow for pattern match, either random, straight across or drop match.

If you are hanging unpasted wallpaper…

You can either paste the wall or paste the paper. If pasting the wall, apply paste evenly to the wall, covering an area for one strip only. If pasting the paper, apply an even coat of paste to the back of the wallpaper, working form the center to the edges. Then loosely fold the moistened strip, pasted sides together and let sit for three minutes. This is known as booking.

Quick Tip: If installing heavy weight paper and specialty unpasted papers including cork, embroidered, and flock, you will want to use a clear, non-staining heavyweight premixed paste adhesive as opposed to a clear, light-medium weight paste.

If you are hanging prepasted wallpaper…

Roll your cut strip loosely with pattern side in, paste side out. Then submerge the rolled strip in warm water for 30 seconds to activate paste. You can also use a Wallpaper Hand Sprayer, to get the same effect and activate the paste by spraying a fine mist of clean water to the pasted surface. (We recommend this method!) Spray in long strokes the length of the paper making sure to thoroughly wet the entire back of the strip, paying close attention to the edges. Fold each end of the moistened strip toward the middle, pasted sides together, aligning the edges carefully so they do not dry out. Avoid creasing the paper. Roll the strip up as you would a loose newspaper, set aside for 3 minutes allowing the paste to activate and the paper relax.

HANG YOUR FIRST STRIP

After booking for three minutes, carry your strip to the wall, unfold and hang. Allow overlap onto the ceiling and baseboard. Using a smoothing brush, broad knife or plastic smoother, remove any air bubbles and make sure all of the wallpaper has made good contact with the wall without distorting or stretching the wallpaper. Use a seam roller to lightly flatten seams.

PROCEED TO THE SECOND STRIP

If butting, place the second strip to the edge of the first strip and smooth out firmly. Be certain to wash the ceiling and the baseboard to remove any paste residing. Protect the face of the wallpaper when cleaning. Seams should be vertical, have a tight fit and be free from air and paste bubbles.

After three panels have been smoothed to the wall surface and excess paste removed, examine the installed panels for uniformity in color. Proceed in the same manner around the room. Geometric and other matching patterns may need additional selvage trimming to obtain color matches across seams.

Follow the steps above to keep going and finish hanging your strips. Once all strips have been hung and excess trim cut, step back and enjoy your beautiful room!

The Exclusive Graham & Brown Guide on Measuring Wallpaper

So, you’ve decided you want to wallpaper your walls – great choice! But now you’re faced with the ultimate question of ‘how many rolls do I need?’

We like to make things easy for you, so we’ve created an online calculator to do the work. All you need to do is enter the height and width of your walls (in metres) and you’re ready to go! The online calculator can be found on each product page on our website.

You can also use the below chart to look up your measurements and estimate how many standard rolls of wallpaper you’ll need to complete your job.

Once you have decided which wallpaper you like, measure the height and width of the desired wall or walls to decorate. See the next page of this document for tips on measuring your walls.

Below you will find tips for measuring your walls and other useful information on match types and what the various symbols mean.

You can also quickly and easily estimate how many rolls you need with the Graham & Brown calculator, available on the product page of each wallpaper pattern.

How to measure in 3 easy steps:

Just as every wallpaper design is different, so is every room. There is no hard and fast rule to figure out the number of rolls you need to finish your project. But you can get an idea by measuring the length and width of the walls, which helps to minimize waste and cost.

How to measure for wallpaper

  1. Use a tape measure to measure the length and width of each wall to the nearest centimeter.
  2. Logic may suggest taking door and window measurements along with the walls. But there’s a good reason to ignore them: You’ll end up ordering slightly more wallpaper than you need. Excluding the doors and windows from your measurement should give you just the right amount of excess. Why go for extra? In case of mistakes. You always want to measure for an extra 10% of waste.
  3. Grab the height and width you measured, plug them into the Graham & Brown chart, and find out how many rolls you need to finish the job.

How to measure for wallpaper

Our easy to use Graham & Brown wallpaper calculator will quickly and easily calculate how many rolls you require.
This is available on the product page of each wallpaper pattern.

How to measure for wallpaper

If you have a large room such as a kitchen to cover, consider measuring one wall at a time and adding up the total at the end.

Every wallpaper design is different. The right amount for your project depends on the match type and the size of the repeat of the pattern.

What are the different match types?

Your perfect wallpaper arrives in one of three different match types: free, straight, or offset.

How to measure for wallpaper

Free Match

The easiest wallpaper to hang—free match means no visible joins or seams, no matter how you hang the strips. With hardly any chance of hanging it wrong, you can expect to spend a lot less time and finish with a lot less waste.

How to measure for wallpaper

Straight Match

Straight match means the left and right edge of one strip match—in a straight horizontal line—with the left and right edge of next strip. Want to check if the match is straight? Just layout two strips next to each other.

How to measure for wallpaper

Offset Match

Offset match means the right edge of first strip only matches the edge of the next strip at a specified distance. A 64/32cm offset match, for example, means the design repeats every 64cm and the point at which they match, from left to right, is every 32cm.

What do the symbols on the label mean?

Other Symbols on the label will relate to the following:

  • How easy the products are to clean
  • The method of application
  • Hanging direction (for example ‘reverse hang alternate lengths’ is occasionally used to create a seamless effect on certain designs)

How to measure for wallpaper

Reverse hang alternate lengths

How to measure for wallpaper

How to measure for wallpaper

How to measure for wallpaper

How to measure for wallpaper

How to measure for wallpaper

How to measure for wallpaper

How to measure for wallpaper

How to measure for wallpaper

Paste the Paper

How to measure for wallpaper

How to measure for wallpaper

Good light fastness

How to measure for wallpaper

How to measure for wallpaper

Moderate light fastness

How to measure for wallpaper

Discover amazing designs when you shop our exciting range of Graham & Brown wallpaper collections.

We know measuring for wallpaper can be the kink in the works for some people. To make the process as easy as possible, we’re showing you exactly how to do it. in pictures! Yay for helpful visuals. 🙂

Remember, unlike many other wallpaper brands, our wallpaper at MUSE Wall Studio doesn’t require you to buy an extra 30% to ensure proper seam matching. Simply follow the steps here and you’ll have just the right amount for your project.

Basic Info

First things first: let’s get on the same page with how our peel & stick wallpaper works. You’ll be ordering individual panels to match the height of your wall. Each panel is 27 inches (or 2.25 feet) wide. You’ll need multiple panels to cover your wall. Here’s the visual.

How to measure for wallpaper

You’ll place the panels side by side with no overlap for one seamless design across the wall. The pink boxes are for illustrative purposes only. 😉

Now, let’s get to measuring. We’ll show how to measure three different types of walls.

How to measure rectangular walls

How to measure for wallpaper

How to measure angled walls

How to measure for wallpaper

This is a two-stepper, but still totally do-able.

Step 1: Measure the maximum width and height of the wall.

With us so far? Next.

How to measure for wallpaper

Step 2: Measure the wall height every 27 inches (from left to right).

Why do this? We’re trying to find out which panels can be shorter, to save you some hard-earned moo-lah. This information will tell us how tall each 27 inch wide panel needs to be to cover the space.

There’s a trick. if your wall is level at the bottom (vs. the top) as shown in this picture, then we’ll need to do some further checking on our end to make sure the panels will seam match at various heights. Please send us the measurements you’ve taken, along with a photo or diagram, and we’ll do the rest. 🙂

How to measure around doorways

Wide doorways sometimes mean an opportunity to save money because you MAY be able to get away with one or two shorter panels. Let’s take a look.

How to measure for wallpaper

Step 1: Just like above, you’ll measure the maximum width and height of the wall (top image).

Step 2: You’ll then measure the height of the wall every 27 inches (bottom image). Just as we explained in the angled wall example, if any 27 inch wide sections are shorter, you can get shorter wallpaper panels.

Let’s have a visual showing how this works.

How to measure for wallpaper

In the picture above each pink rectangle represents a single wallpaper panel. The far left panel just covers the full width of the tall section of wall, which means the next panel to the right (and the next one!) can be shorter.

Just be sure to measure every 27 inches so you know if you really can go shorter on any single panel. Wouldn’t it be a major bummer if the far left panel was an inch too narrow to cover all the way down the wall, and you unexpectedly had a section of wall showing through? 🙁 Measure as we’ve shown and that won’t happen to you.

How to measure around a window

For almost every size window you’ll use the same approach as the first example, a rectangular wall. Since you’ll need wallpaper to cover underneath the window (and seam match the adjacent panels) simply ignore the window for the purposes of measuring. You’ll have a little extra material from cutting around the window, but keep in mind 1) you don’t have to order 30% extra on top of this for seam matching, and 2) there are so many fun and useful ways to reuse the leftover wallpaper around your house.

However if your window takes up the majority of the wall, please send a diagram and we’ll offer advice.

How-To DIY FAQ Home Site Map
Contents Wallpaper
Introduction

Measuring
How much do I need?

Need Supplies?
S h o p p i n g
D i r e c t o r y

How Much Wallpaper Do I Need?

Buying the rolls: Wallpaper usually is sold in double or triple rolls, which is confusing since it’s priced by the single roll.
Example, if a single roll, which covers about 25 square feet, is priced at $10, but packaged as a double roll, it will cost $20.

Generally, calculate the square footage of walls by multiplying the wall height by the distance around the room (perimeter).
Example: A 10-by-12-foot room (perimeter equals 44 feet) with an 8-foot-high ceiling would have 352 square feet of wall (multiply the perimeter, 44, by 8, the ceiling height). Divide total square footage by 25 (the amount of wall coverage per single roll) for the number of single rolls needed, which is about 14.
Deduct a single roll for each doorway and a half roll for an average-sized window.

Pattern repeat: This refers to the size of the pattern that has to be matched to each panel of paper, and can affect how much wallpaper will be needed.

The types of repeats are:
Straight Match: Every strip should be the same at the ceiling line, the pattern matches straight horizontally.

Drop Match/ Half Drop Match: Every other strip will be the same at the ceiling line. The pattern drops down on the paper every time it is repeated.

Random Match: The pattern matches no matter how the adjoining strips are positioned. Examples are grasscloth and just random images.
A large pattern drop means more waste on each roll. If you choose a pattern with a large 12″ or more repeat simply add the amount of the repeat,say 12″ to the ceiling height when calculating how much you need and that will allow for the extra waste. If the ceiling height in your room is 8′ simply consider it to be 9′.

Wallpaper stores and some home-improvement centers offer free wallpaper classes and how-to brochures.

Where to Next?
Use the Wallpaper Menu at the top left or below to the Site Menu