Help me come up with a light, thin material for backing strips

My neice is decorating her bedroom. There is a sports-themed border running around the top of the walls which she would like to cover up. Rather than trying to paint over it, we decided it would look cool to have a fabric strip for a border.

I started thinking that I could use something thin and light, like balsa wood or foamcore board, to staple the fabric to. Then we could nail the strips over the border.

I found thin planks of balsa wood on-line, but the were a little pricey. I couldn’t find foamcore board in 6" strips; it would have to be cut, and the pieces aren’t very long.

I’ve been trying to think of other stuff that might work. Should I get one piece of wood paneling and get hubby to rip it in 6" strips? Would cardboard be stiff enough?

What do y’all think?

BTW the room is 12’ x 13’.


I think cardboard would work fine. It won’t be under stress or getting wet. Have you looked at wallpaper borders? That would work as well, but maybe not as customized to match.

For some very weird reasons which I won’t get into, we don’t want to disturb the old sports-themed border. So we want to cover it up, but not by gluing anything over it.

I wonder if I could get long cardboard scrap from somewhere? Either that or just scavenge for refrigerator boxes, I guess.

What about dowel rods? Wrap the top and the bottom of your fabric around dowel rods and hang them from the ceiling so that the rods are flush with the wall?

Just a question:

Why don’t you remove the old boarder (I’m assuming it’s a wallpaper strip?), and just adhere the fabric to the wall using staples and/or glue?

ETA: Nevermind, after posting, I see you don’t want to destroy the old boarder.

7.5" Taskboard?

I would get the 8’x4’ foam insulation board from the building store. It’s easy to cut with a utility knife and it’s cheap. Then I would duct tape the fabric to the back and hang it on the wall with Command Adhesive strips. (I’ve done something similar before)


I think you can get it on a roll. You’d have to check it out. It might even be sticky on both sides when the 2 pieces are together. One part goes on the wall; the other part on the fabric. Stick the fabric up there. Then you can easily take it down to clean, change out, whatever.

I could see this being very cool, she could even put some kind of decorative thing on the bottom like fringe.

The previous border has sentimental value to my older son (who no longer lives here). So we are indulging him and leaving it.

I forgot about that stuff! It is very thin, and light too. Thanks for the reminder about it.

Huh. I really like this idea, and the price! Only $9 for a full sheet.

I like the idea of changing the fabric panels out easily. I remember the rolls you mention, they even have peel-and-stick.
Thank you everyone for the suggestions. I really appreciate it. :slight_smile:

Another thing they might do on some of the decorating shows I watch is to simply hem the top of the fabric, run fishing line through it, and put eye hooks in each corner, holding up the fishing line.

Since you’re planning to redo the border with cloth, you could screw lightweight eyehooks into the corners and string a wire all the way around the room to suspend the cloth from.

eta. LOL! Simulpost!

I’d buy a bunch of cheap wooden yardsticks. Staple the fabric to them and then nail them up along the ceiling.

Foam board!
Foam board!
Foam board!