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Leen the Graphics Queen and Installing Wall Vinyl

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I had the opportunity to meet Leen the Graphics Queen last week when she, her husband and her two sweet boys were in town. We met at Monkey Joe’s (an inflatable playground) and our boys had a fun and energetic afternoon playing together. If you haven’t heard of Leen, she is widely known in the decorating blog circles as the go-to gal for wall decals and vinyl. She helped Layla & Kevin install an ENTIRE wall of words for a beach cottage makeover.

Beautiful, don’t you think?!

I asked Leen to make me a custom quote for our bedroom wall, the one where I had agonized over what phrase to put. After months of thinking about quotes, one came to me and I knew it was the quote for us. You see Pretty Handy Guy and I are HUGE Dave Matthews Band fans, and this lyric has special meaning to us:

Leen sent me a few samples of vinyl colors to help me decide. I fell in love with the silver vinyl which changes color depending on the lighting and where you are standing in the room (as shown above.)

If you’ve never installed vinyl before, it isn’t terribly difficult, but it does help to know a few tricks of the trade. Here is how I learned to install vinyl (back in the days when I worked for the sign and banner company):


(I’ve included affiliate links for your convenience. I earn a small percentage from a purchase using these links. There is no additional cost to you. You can read more about affiliate links here.)

Installing a Wall Quote:

Start by hanging your vinyl (front, lettering, backing and all) on the wall using painter’s tape to hold it. Adjust the location until you like where the decal will rest.

Set a level up against the bottom of the middle line of text. Adjust the placement of your decal until the type is level.

Draw a level horizontal line across the paper and let the line extend slightly onto the wall. Make a vertical line that is plumb (level up and down) and be sure to extend your line slightly off the paper and onto the wall.

You should now have intersecting lines that run vertical and horizontal on your wall graphic and four small tick marks extending onto the wall.

Remove your wall quote and lay it on a flat surface. Begin to remove the opaque shiny backing paper (it may have a grid or lettering on it.)  Your decal should stick to the clear semi-transparent sticky sheet that was on top of the quote. If some letters come up, simply lay the paper back down and rub it firmly with the gift card and try again.

Continue peeling off the backing paper.

Be careful not to touch any of the lettering (or they can stick to your fingers and won’t remain in proper placement.)

You are now looking at your lettering in reverse on a sticky sheet. Good job, the hard part is over. Well, almost over.

Carefully pick up your quote and turn it so the sticky side faces your wall. Line up your lines with the tick marks still on the wall being VERY CAREFUL not to rest the sticky paper onto the wall. (If it accidentally sticks, carefully pull it off being sure that the letters come off with the sticky paper.)

When all four tick marks are lined up with your horizontal and vertical lines, gently press your decal down. Starting from the center, rub your hand from the center out to the edges to adhere the quote and the sticky paper to your wall.

Lightly spray water all over the sticky paper. This will loosen the sticky paper and release the vinyl decal.

Use your gift card to burnish (sign shop lingo) the letters onto the wall. Use firm pressure and be sure to rub all the letters with the card.

Carefully begin to peel the sticky paper off the wall. If the letters start to peel off with the paper, lay the paper back down over that letter and rub your finger on top of the paper to press the letter back onto the wall.

When the paper backing has been removed. Erase your tick marks.

Now stand back and admire your new wall quote!

Thank you Leen for helping me complete my bedroom makeover! I LOVE IT!

Take a few minute to browse through some of Leen the Graphics Queen‘s beautiful decals in her website.

Some of my favorites are:

Home Decor Accents

Trees and Flowers




126 replies
  1. deb
    deb says:

    OOOOOHHHHHH, this is awesome, first of all I am already a follower of you Pretty Handy Girl, and if I won, I would first of all order the Laundry saying as that is one of my new projects I am going to be tackling, it is in my garage and I am going to make it an extension of my home with paint and pictures, what this would do is awesome, and then I would order a special name for my sewing studio….

  2. Samantha
    Samantha says:

    I love vinyl lately. Just need to have some show up in my home now 🙂 I follow you. I would love the front door number decal and likely the one about He follows the sparrow…love 😉

  3. Seychelle
    Seychelle says:

    If I won the gift certificate I would buy the Welcome decal for my front door, the three panel leaves, and the “shell in your pocket, sand in your shoes!” decal. I LOVE them!!

  4. Andrea Skeens
    Andrea Skeens says:

    If I win the giveaway I think I would get the Emily Bronte quote, which is so sweet, and one of the birds & trees graphic. They all look really good, though.

  5. Sharon L
    Sharon L says:

    I updated my facebook status! I would LOVE to win this! We moved into a rental last month and the master bedroom is in dire need of some personalization!

  6. Stacey of Embracing Change
    Stacey of Embracing Change says:

    Wow! she has such a great selection of decals…I really do love them all. I think I like the canister lables, the Trust in the Lod scripture, the crab shack decal or the scalloped shape personalized monogram. I also like the birds! Thanks for this giveaway!!!
    Stacey of Embracing Change

  7. aeko
    aeko says:

    I follow her on facebook, and went to her site and found the chalkboard decals and ordered a set. So many cute things, really like the tree graphics, the dandelions blowing in the wind are cute too.

  8. Judith Ann from Cape Cod
    Judith Ann from Cape Cod says:

    This is so odd, but since going to church on Sunday, I’ve had the music for the response, “This is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad,” playing in my head. Guess that means that if I were to win (please!), I’d choose that! But, gee, I’m still working on my sewing room in hot pink and black, so I also love the sewing decals — that would be one way to get the dressmaker’s form I’d like…

  9. Lisa F
    Lisa F says:

    I really love the ‘Cute Owl in Tree Vinyl Wall Decal’. Will eventually have a nursery/office to decorate (our little guy is due in 3 weeks, no rush!) and this would be fun to have next to/above the crib.

  10. shannon thompson
    shannon thompson says:

    i would get the Personalized Princess Castle Vinyl Wall Decal we have been looking for one for our little girls room and this is just perfect i love how it is personalized.

    thanks for the giveaway

    [email protected]

  11. Michaela
    Michaela says:

    I would buy the Three panel leaves and branches wall decal with the gift certificate! And that was a VERY hard decision…sooooo many cute ones!

  12. Tati
    Tati says:

    Don’t know how I missed this post, but glad I came across it. I love this stuff, but I’m wondering – do your walls have to be smooth to use these decals? All of my walls are knock-down texture…

  13. Susan Bryant
    Susan Bryant says:

    I think I would probably buy the Two Birds on Tree Branch Vinyl Wall Decal but I can’t say for sure because I love the quotes on her website too! Decisions, decisions……I guess I have to win before I fret over what I will pick for sure!

  14. Rachel
    Rachel says:

    I’d buy one of our last name for the living room and maybe a quote for the bedroom. it would look amazing with my newly painted walls!

  15. Sarah
    Sarah says:

    I would love the whimsical tree with the owl for the playroom that I am conquering (um, redoing) this summer. Already have the paint and furniture. Just gotta get to it and add the details…

  16. Amy
    Amy says:

    I would love to get the “Huge Tree Blowing in the Wind” but would be totally happy to get the “Flower Tree in the Wind” with the addition of a little bit of my own $. Thanks for a chance to win.

  17. Tati
    Tati says:

    Man, I don’t think I can pick just one that I would want to get….however, I must say that I’m really liking the house address/number for the front door.

  18. Sherrer
    Sherrer says:

    I just found your blog & started following you. (I’m lovin it!) I would love to win “Home where the happiest memories are mad” decal

  19. Sheila
    Sheila says:

    I would likely get the three initials monogram for over my bed and over my daughters bed if I were lucky enough to win!

  20. Carrie
    Carrie says:

    I’ve always loved her “Dandelions Blowing in the Wind” decal, and would put it in our guest room. Perhaps with a cool quote about hopes and wishes!

  21. roxann
    roxann says:

    I just got a condo, and I am SO excited. In the past, I just wrote on my walls. Because I want an elegant look, I’m going to use vinyl lettering this time. The idea of a whole wall just wagged my tail! Great idea and great technique! Thank you for the inspiration!


Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] firmly and burnish the letters onto the sign. Gently peel off the transfer […]

  2. […] Erase the pencil marks on the plywood sign. (Read here for more detailed directions when working with wall vinyl.) […]

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