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How to Decorate with a Self-Stick Wall Border?

When decorating my son’s room, I chose the theme of Disney’s movie “Cars”. I found all kinds of decor, including a self-stick wall border made by Imperial Blue Mountain Wallcoverings. I chose the self-stick border because I live in a HDB, and interior design of 4 room hdb flat like glued wallpaper are a huge no-no. The border was very cute, definitely boyish, and would have been the perfect accent for the walls – if only it had stayed on the walls.

The self-stick border cost more than the traditional borders that you have to glue. The one I bought was around ten dollars per 5 inch by 15 foot roll. It was a bit of a splurge for a baby’s room, given that he wouldn’t even be able to tell what it was. I bought this border at the beast we all know as Wal-Mart, though I have this sneaking suspicion that the retailer only sells “seconds” – that is, items of inferior quality.

The three-step directions on the package are relatively simple, and I followed them closely.

Step 1: Position – Ensure surface is clean, smooth and dry. Carefully peel border from the sheet.

I used a mild cleaner and cloth to wipe down the entire area the border was to cover. Though it says to peel the border from the backing, this only resulted in a sticky, tangled mess.

Step 2: Apply – Position and apply firmly onto surface without overlapping.

My husband and I positioned small sections of the border and smoothed firmly with wallpaper rollers.

Step 3: Remove – To remove or reposition simply peel border slowly from surface.

We did not need to reposition, so, confident in our work, we turned out the lights and went to bed.

The next morning when we went to admire our work, we were extremely disappointed to see the border lying in a heap on the carpet. Since then we have tried everything we can think of (within the confines of our lease) to make the border stay in place. First I tried small nails at two-foot intervals. The weight of the border, though minimal, caused the paper to rip through the nail-heads. Next we tried thumbtacks. This time the weight of the sagging border just pulled the tacks out of the wall. The last thing we tried was two-sided poster hangers. Now, the border just sags along the wall. Every now and then we smooth it out and it stays put for about five minutes.

I would absolutely not buy this product again. Aside from the cost of the border itself, we were out expenses for the items we purchased to try to achieve the results we expected to begin with. The only claim this product lives up to is that it is indeed removable – it removes itself!