If you have ever removed wallpaper in the past you know that it can be a nightmare. It never simply peels off like it does on those home improvement shows. There are many products available to you to supposedly make it easier. You can buy special tools to score the wallpaper, wallpaper removal chemicals and even special scrapers. They help a little but usually do not work as well as advertised. Even a small room can take hours, even days to strip the wallpaper from. What choice do you have though, it must be done if you are going to paint that room. Well maybe not, you might just be able to paint over that wallpaper.
If you decide you want to try to paint over wallpaper you must first make a careful examination of it. Look for areas that are coming loose, bubbling up or torn. All of these areas must be repaired if you are going to paint over it so if it is damaged in many areas, you should pull it down. If it is only damaged in a few areas, we can continue.
First you need to repair the damaged areas. Glue any loose sections of the wallpaper and make sure that all of it is firmly attached to the wall. Now mix up some joint compound and apply it to the seams. This will keep the edges from peeling in the future and give you a smooth surface on which to texture. If the wallpaper itself is textured, you will need to float the entire wall with joint compound. After the joint compound dries, you should sand it lightly to smooth the surface. Let the surface dry thoroughly before continuing.
If your old wallpaper had a dark color, you should apply a sealer now. The sealer will keep the strong color from bleeding through in the future. After you have sealed the wall, you can begin texturing. You have a variety of different texturing options available to you. Visit your home improvement store’s paint department for examples of texture. Let the texture dry thoroughly after applying it.