How to Change the Paper on Fusuma (Japanese Sliding Doors)



Fusuma are lightweight papered interior doors in Japanese-style rooms (washitsu). Changing the paper on fusuma is an easy way to personalize a Japanese apartment without causing permanent damage.

Steps

  1. Image titled Change the Paper on Fusuma (Japanese Sliding Doors) Step 1
    1
    Buy paper. The size of the doors vary, but generally you will need at least 69 centimeter (27.2 in) of width and 180 centimeter (70.9 in) of height. Add a few cm to each measurement to wrap around the sides of the door.
  2. Image titled Change the Paper on Fusuma (Japanese Sliding Doors) Step 2
    2
    Remove the door by lifting it gently and pulling it towards you. Lay it down on a flat, clean surface. Using masking tape, label the four sides of the door frame: up, down, left, right. Remove the top and bottom sides by pulling slowly but firmly.
  3. Image titled Change the Paper on Fusuma (Japanese Sliding Doors) Step 3
    3
    Remove the sides by placing a scrap block of wood on the top (or bottom in some cases), and tap gently with a hammer until they come loose. The left and right sides are usually held on with screw heads sunk into grooves. Remove the metal hand "cup" by pulling out one of the two small nails on the inside of the cup, lifting the same side out of the door, and pulling the cup away from the remaining nail.
  4. Image titled Change the Paper on Fusuma (Japanese Sliding Doors) Step 4
    4
    Spray your paper with a light mist of water and let sit for a few minutes. Lay your paper down on top of the door, holding it in place. Apply glue to the edges of the paper.
  5. Image titled Change the Paper on Fusuma (Japanese Sliding Doors) Step 5
    5
    Smooth out any air bubbles between the paper and the door. Pull gently on opposite edges and fold the paper around the door, creating a light crease on the corners. Let the glue dry.
  6. Image titled Change the Paper on Fusuma (Japanese Sliding Doors) Step 6
    6
    Cut a hole for the hand "cup" and push the excess paper into the hole. Replace the cup and its nails. Replace the frame pieces. Put the door back in its frame.

Tips

  • Get a friend to help to hold the paper down in step 4.
  • Try using a starch-based glue.
  • Washi (Japanese-style paper) is great for papering fusuma, but often come in small sheets. Buy more than you think you'll need, and join the pieces together before papering the door

Warnings

  • If you are renting your place, only use glue on the edges so you can remove it before you move out.

Article Info

Categories: Doors and Windows | Home Decorating