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know your wallpaper

From Habitat plus - wallpaper

Wallpapers are typically sold as single rolls that are 50cm wide and approx 10m long. Some may be wider or narrower, longer or shorter.

Resene Wallpaper 5218-2
Resene Wallpaper 5218-2


Many wallpapers are now ‘paste-the-wall’, which means exactly that. You paste the wall, then apply the paper. Only papers with a non-woven substrate are suitable for this. If in doubt, check with your Resene ColorShop staff. This type of paper also dry-strips easily from the wall.

Prepasted papers come with a water-activated adhesive backing. You need to soak the paper to relax the adhesive, before hanging.

Print matching:  

The designs on some wallpapers need to be matched from strip to strip, i.e. lined up so that the wall has an even effect. There are three types: straight, random and drop. Straight-match papers run the width of the paper and across the seam onto the next strip. Random-match papers continue seamlessly no matter what. Drop-match papers require extra planning and must be aligned horizontally and vertically on either side, as the pattern is slightly offset from strip to strip.

Drop-match papers will come with a ‘pattern repeat’ expressed in the number of centimetres a pattern stretches vertically until it repeats itself. The lower the repeat, the lower the waste. Solids and textures, for example, have no repeat and little waste because the amount you’ll need is easy to calculate.

How much will you need:  

Calculating how much wallpaper you need can be tricky when you take into account the windows and doors in the room. Exact roll measurements also vary by manufacturer, but most cover five square metres. Ask your Resene ColorShop staff to help, or use the calculator on the 'how to hang wallpaper" page'.


Wallpapers are durable and maintenance is easy. Scrubbable papers can be cleaned with a sponge and detergent. Washable papers can be gently cleaned or wiped with a damp cloth.


Unlike years gone by when soaking then chipping away at an old wallpaper with a broad knife was the only way to get it off, today’s wallpapers are easy to remove. They come in strippable and peelable types. The former can be removed without water or chemicals and leave no backing. The latter peels off the wall and may leave some adhesive residue behind, which can be removed with detergent and water.

International wallpaper symbols:

No match No match
Straight match Straight match
Half drop match Half drop match
Distance between repeat Distance between repeat / Distance offset
Super washable Super-washable
Scrubble Scrubbable
Sufficient light fastness Sufficient light fastness
Good light fastness Good light fastness
Direction of hanging Direction of hanging
Reverse alternate lengths Reverse alternate lengths
Spongable Spongeable
Washable Washable
Peelable Peelable
Pre pasted Pre-pasted
Paste the wall Paste the wall
Paste the paper Paste the paper

updated May 2021
Habitat plus - wallpaper


Please place your wallpaper orders allowing plenty of time as there may be delays and some items may be unavailable. Samples are available in selected designs. Ask our Resene ColorShop team for assistance. Please view your favourites in store.

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