How To: Renter-Friendly Duct Tape Paneling

How To: Renter-Friendly Duct Tape Paneling

Janel Laban
Feb 27, 2009


Title: Renter-Friendly Duct Tape Paneling
Name: Kinsey
Time: Two afternoons
Cost: $60

Kinsey was "cursed with white walls and a lease that forbids painting" but found a way! Click above for pics, below for the how-to and be sure to give Kinsey a THUMBS UP if you find this project helpful....

-Black duct tape (8 rolls, 1.88 inches wide x 20 yards long)
-Poster board (23 sheets, 22 x 28 inches)
-Brass thumb tacks
-Black Sharpie

Like many renters cursed with white walls and a lease that forbids painting, I've spent many an hour brain-storming different ways to give my apartment some color. Vinyl wall decals didn't give me the full coverage I wanted and my landlord nixed my proposal to "wallpaper" my place with fabric and starch. Small holes in the walls were okay, however, so long as I patched them upon move-out. I wanted something really dramatic for my dining room, a black wall reminiscent of overlapping leather belts.

Remembering that duct tape when layered has a really textured look as well as a slight shine I devised this plan to make lightweight panels that I could tack securely onto the wall but remove with minimal fuss. There was quite a bit of measuring to be done first in order to determine the best width for the panels, keeping in mind both the final look and fitting easily around obstacles like wall outlets and a drop-down air duct. For this project I went with nine panels eight feet long and fourteen inches wide.

1. Fold each sheet of poster board in half, "hamburger" style (aka, along the shortest axis of symmetry). Cut along the folded line so that you end up with two sheets, 22 x 14 inches.
2. Staple the sheets together, leaving about one centimeter overlap, until you reach the desired length (8 ft here). Trim the excess.
3. Cut off a strip of duct tape 15 inches long, or long enough to wrap around each side about half an inch. Starting at what will be the bottom of the panel, apply the tape, smoothing out any bubbles. Continue applying tape up the panel, overlapping about half a centimeter with the strip of tape beneath it. This is the time-consuming bit of this project, so put a movie on in the background if you want.
4. Starting at either the right or left hand-most corner, hang the first panel on the wall using the thumb tacks (for the whole you can push them in with your thumb, but when you hit a stud then it's time to bust out the hammer), one at each corner and as many as needed along the edges to have the panel lay flat. Hang the next panel so that it overlaps the first by an inch, and so on.
5. The brass tack heads can pop nicely off of the black, but since I wanted them to blend in I colored them black with a Sharpie. Now to find the right art to hang in my new focal wall!

Everything came from my toolbox or the local craft store.

Give Kinsey a THUMBS UP if you find this project helpful....

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