Our All-time Top Wallcovering Prep, Print & Installation Tips

Any time you’re covering a wall floor-to-ceiling it’s a big job. But with some insider tips and the right products for the job, you can break it down into a manageable task. Here are some of our all-time, most helpful tricks and tips for seamless, professional wallcovering printing and installation:

Do Your Pre-Work: Before you can even think about hitting “go” on your printer, be sure you’ve got your site under control. These means doing a site visit ahead of time, testing the wall surface and taking photos and wall measurements (here’s a handy app, Photo Measures, that makes that job easier). Once that’s under control, you can begin creating tiles that you’ll print. Check out the video on this blog for more pre-printing tips and how to set up your tile files.

Know When to Go Short-Term: This isn’t your grandma’s wall paper, and chances are your clients won’t be planning to leave it on the wall for the next 30 years. There are so many options on the market today for short- to long-term wall murals for a multitude of applications. For a low-cost, temporary solution that can be cleanly removed, there’s no better option than LexJet Print-N-Stick Fabric. It’s available for aqueous– and solvent-compatible technologies. Check out this video to learn how we covered a 26-foot wall for less than $2 per square foot.

Understand the Big Picture: If you’re using photography for a customized wallcovering, the photo itself needs to be technically correct to work when it’s printed in a larger-than-life size. We got all the insider tips on photographing for wide-format printing from pro photographer, Billy Elkins. Check out this airport wall mural installation project that he created images for … and all the background on how he made it come out just right.

HP PVC-free Wall PaperMeet Your Client’s Environmental Needs: If you’ve been asked to cover a wall in a sensitive environment like a school or a healthcare facility, the best option for the job is Type II compliant HP PVC-free Durable Wall Paper in Smooth or Suede. This line of wallcovering is engineered to be used with HP latex inks and don’t require top coats to maintain Type II compliance. Unlike some solvent options, this latex-compatible option doesn’t put off odors or fumes that must be degassed before installation. It also meets FSC- and UL GREENGUARD GOLD standards, so it helps designers achieve LEED certification. And because it’s pre-pasted with adhesive, it goes up easily with little more than a water bottle and a sponge. Check out this video to learn how.

Create a Beautiful Finish: Just because it’s made from a digital print and maybe it won’t be installed for decades doesn’t mean it can’t be beautiful. Our line of customizable wallcoverings, LexJet Premium WallPro™ comes in a variety of elegant finishes to create one-of-a-kind, eye-catching walls. The Premium WallPro line includes a variety of finishes, such as smooth, gold or silver metallic, mylar and linen textures that work beautifully in any residential or commercial space with contemporary or traditional décor.

If you’re looking for more tips on creating unique wallcoverings for your customers, give one of our LexJet pros a call at 800-453-9538.

LexJet Print-N-Stick: Encouraging Students to Explore the World

When Ashton Elementary School teacher Rachel Montisano wanted to liven up her classroom while simultaneously providing an interactive educational environment, she reached out to LexJet for some ideas.  Michael Clementi, LexJet’s in-house printing guru, recommended that she use LexJet Print-N-Stick Fabric.

“The use of large-format graphics has allowed me to create an interactive environment for my first-grade students as we study different topics,” says Montisano. With the bright, matte surface, easy repositionability and cleanly removable adhesive, the Print-N-Stick was the right product to bring the world into Montisano’s classroom.

Recently, her students were asked to research and report on the different animals found in the Arctic. As they stood at the head of the class to give their presentations, an image of polar bears frolicking near a snow-lined river served as the back drop for the students. Montisano says, “the students added animals and wrote their own captions and labels on the image. They were so excited to use what they had learned and make it a part of the large, realistic scene.”

Now that their trek through the Arctic is finished, the students will be whisked away to the Amazon rain forest. Once again, they will be asked to research the plants, animals and other interesting critters that call the rain forest home. Excited to see what the students’ imaginations will bring, Montisano says, “they will create their own plants and animals to add to our rain forest graphic, turning our classroom wall into a life-sized page from a non-fiction picture book.”

However, this new graphic will not just be for the students’ education and enjoyment, “they will make a presentation to parents,” she says. “As everyone walks through the rain forest, the graphic – and the special additions – will help them explain to their parents everything they have learned about the Amazon.”

Montisano is thrilled with the results of the images on the Print-N-Stick Fabric and says that the size and scope of the graphics played a huge part in bringing the environments to life in her classroom, which continue to generate excitement and learning amongst the students. The vivid colors, the ease of working with the product and the photographic image quality all contributed to a successful experience for the Ashton Elementary first graders.

“Working with this product allowed me to use thematic teaching – incorporating reading, writing and science in the same project – and it has been so rewarding to see such enthusiasm from my students,” she says.

How to Create Tiles for Wall Murals in Photoshop

With the popularity of customized wall murals reaching an all-time high, setting up your print files properly is more important than ever. If you don’t have RIP software specific for creating tiles for large wall murals, not to worry! You can easily create your print files using Photoshop, as shown in the video above.

In this video, you’ll learn how to:

  • Crop a full size image to match the size of the wall
    • Tips for image resolution and cropping
  • Make tiles for printing using the Fixed Size Selection Tool in Photoshop
    • Easy copy-and-paste method to create tiles ready for your media width
  • Create panels to print with a half-inch overlap
    • Now you’re ready for printing!

Once you print your panels, you’re ready to install. Watch this Video: 3 Steps to Installing Large Tiled Wall Graphics to learn some vital tips to make the job a cinch.

Suggested self-adhesive products for easy install, positioning and removal of wall murals:

Dec. 1-31: Save 20% on Your First Vescom Wallcovering Order

For your discerning customers who want high-end, luxurious wallcovering finishes for corporate, healthcare, residential and retail spaces, we’re offering 20% off your first order of any Vescom digital wallcovering finishes throughout the month of December.

Starting Friday, use coupon code VESC20 at checkout, and we’ll take 20% off your first order of Vescom finishes like the soft, lightly textured Vescom Felt, the fine linen emboss of Vescom Tabby, or the SGIA award-winning luster and shine of Vescom Metallic Sand. Visit LexJet.com/Vescom to discover all nine finishes available at LexJet.

All Vescom textures are certified for HP Latex Inks and are considered the “cleanest” vinyl wallcoverings that meet EPA requirements for low-VOC emitting products and are Commercial Grade, Class A Fire Rating, non-phthalate and non-formaldehyde and heavy metal- and antimony-free.

To ensure your get predictable results project after project, Vescom wallcovering is finished with a special top coat that delivers exceptional consistency and a longer shelf life than other PVC wallcoverings on the market. The media is receptive to liquid coating for extra protection, and we recommend Marabu ClearShield Wall Armor.

“Having a product that’s very consistent is a big key for me,” says Mike Speeney of Limitless Walls in King, N.C., who uses Vescom Matte for many customer projects. “The durability is really important so you don’t have ripping or tearing … We try to make sure everything is perfect going out the doors, so when the customer gets it, they go, ‘Wow this is awesome.'”

To learn more about Vescom wallcovering, call a LexJet print specialist at 800-453-9538.

For Good Measure: Yes, There’s an App for That!

If you’re looking for a way to make site inspections just a little bit easier, we’ve found Photo Measures, a smartphone app that allows you to save and share measurements and dimensions on photos taken with your phone’s camera.

Instead of using a rough, hand-drawn sketch with notes, Photo Measures lets you:

  • Take photos and draw measurements and details directly on the picture
  • Zoom in and out of your photo when you need to be more precise
  • Edit measurements with just a touch
  • Quickly add text as comments when more info is needed
  • Easily organize your photos by category
  • Export measurements in hi-res by email or to your photo library (PDF or JPG)
  • And import photos of any size and aspect ratio

It’s available for both Android and iOS devices. The Android version is currently $4.99 and the iOS is $6.99.

There’s also a free version of this app called: Photo Measures Lite, and this version is pretty helpful, too. However, it has a few limitations compared to the full version:

  • You’re limited to only 2 photos at a time
  • The photos you export will have a watermark

We’ve put together a quick video, above, to show Photo Measures in action. Check it out and let us know how this app and other on-the-job apps make your life easier.

Vescom Digital Media: Wallcovering Line Now Available at LexJet

For busy print service providers, media consistency is key. And that couldn’t be truer when it comes to printable wallcovering. The print runs are large, and décor-level quality is highly scrutinized. At LexJet, we’re excited to now offer Vescom Digital Media, some of the highest-grade and most environmentally sound PVC vinyls on the market.

A restaurant wall mural printed by Limitless Walls

Early users have been impressed with the production quality and consistency. “Having a product that’s very consistent is a big key for me,” says Mike Speeney of Limitless Walls in King, N.C., which prints up to 40 wall murals a week for commercial clients, designers and architects, and the general public.

“The durability is really important so you don’t have ripping or tearing,” Speeney says. “And, we’ve been using the Vescom Matte because you don’t want a glare with light bouncing back in your face like you would with a gloss finish.”