Removing Starched Fabric From Walls

I have shared several starched fabric wall tutorials on the blog, and my readers are always concerned about what happens to the wall when the fabric is removed.  Today I am sharing all the details (including a video at the end of this post) and proving how easy removing starched fabric from walls is, and it won’t damage walls or paint!

Removing starched fabric from walls

Starched fabric walls are a great solution for those of us who love the look of wallpaper but have commitment issues.  This treatment is also perfect for renters – starched fabric is a temporary wallpaper.

I am in the middle of remodeling our laundry room, and part of the design includes a tiled wall.  Because of the new design, I am (sadly) removing my fabric wall. To see the full tutorial on how to hang your own starched fabric wall, go HERE.  It is not hard, but it does take a little patience.  I perfected the process after several attempts over the years, and the result is a gorgeous patterned wall that will be easy to remove once you grow tired of it! I had a little difficulty the first time I tried this method in our half bath, and I share all my trials and errors in my original starched fabric tutorial.

I have had readers who have had starched fabric hanging on their walls for years – one woman told me she has had a fabric wall for over 15 years!  I have been told this is an old military housing trick, and it works well on dorm cement blocks.

Want to see me removing the starched fabric from walls? Watch the video here:


Have you ever used fabric as wallpaper?  I’d love to hear about your DIY adventures with it – good and bad!

Go create something!

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25 thoughts on “Removing Starched Fabric From Walls

  1. I love the starched fabric idea. One question though, I presume that there is starch residue left on the drywall afterward. So what is the best way to remove that if now you want to paint the walls?

  2. Hey! I would like to know if this would impact (take off) the paint on the walls when removing it?
    Living in a rental right now and would love to try this out!

  3. Maybe this is a dumb question, but after removal can the fabric be washed and starched to another wall or is it a toss it situation? I have a few cotton tapestries that I want to hang but was considering starching them, but didn’t want to have to throw them out when we move out.

  4. Hey,
    I am going to try out this idea, but what kind of fabric is best to use for this? I am doing an accent wall in my new place, and it will be a pretty big area, i’m trying to figure out what kind of fabric, and how much i will need

  5. Good morning,

    The video you had linked to this article isn’t there anymore. Could you send me the link, please?
    I hope you’re having a marvelous day.


  6. I’m in a rental home and they have a wall that has horrible wallpaper already. Looking for a way to cover it with something I like but be able to remove without damage when/if we move. Would this method work ? Or would it pull off the existing wallpaper

    1. Although I’ve never tried it before, I do think it would work! Your wallpaper shouldn’t be damaged or come off unless heat is used. Maybe test a little piece first? Good luck!

  7. I am just finding this article now, how fun!

    Question though…any worried about color transfer to the walls if you do a bright bold pattern onto plain walls?

    Thank you!

  8. Hello,
    What do you use to clean the wall from starch excess? The thing is, I installed a beautiful elefánt on my wall, but of course the piece doesn’t cover the whole wall, so I have some starch excess on the edges.

    Thank you!

  9. Yes, it is a military family trick. My mom told me about it (her dad was in the US Army) and they had family friends in the Army who did this.