Tag Archives: Wallpaper

Misadventures and Mixed Pleasures in Wallpaper Removal

The other day, without too much forethought or preparation I went in to test an area of the peeling wallpaper in the upstairs bathroom.  Although I had only intended on testing a small area, I ended up doing one whole entire wall (albeit a very small “whole entire wall,” but a whole wall just the same ;)).   Call me weird, but there’s just something about peeling and picking in general that tends to fascinate me, and once I got going I couldn’t seem to stop myself.

Because the top layer of the wallpaper was already peeling so badly, it came off without much effort (that was the fun part), but the backing… a whole other story.  And the worst part is… whoever installed the wallpaper  (37 years ago) did not prep/prime the wall underneath, so as I attempted to remove the backing of the wallpaper, some of the surface of the drywall peeled off right along with it.  This is bad.  Bad, bad, bad.

I am so disappointed about that because it means that I’m going to have to try and figure out how to repair the drywall, and I have no idea how to do that.  I mean, I can spackle nail holes and slight imperfections reasonably well in preparation for painting, but mudding drywall (which I believe this is going to require) = no clue.  Yeah, not feeling particularly confident there.  At all.

But I’m going to try not fret about that right now, because I’m actually rather enjoying this process.  It’s a bit hard on me, I have bad knees and standing for any length of time really takes its toll on me, so I have to pace myself and just do small amounts at a time, but while I was working, I had a really good mind-set.

Not only did it just feel good to peel stuff, but there was also something that felt very renewing about getting rid of that old, cracked, and decrepit top layer of wallpaper, scraping away the more than slightly resistant backing, and then just getting underneath it all to the foundation of the wall.

<insert life lessons type of metaphor here>

Also, while I worked, the birds were twittering away in the lilac bush outside the windows, and singing me a sweet symphony with their cheerful little chirping sounds.  It was lovely and made my heart feel light.  ♥

When I was able to peel myself away from my peeling, I went and grabbed my camera to see if I could catch a picture of them, and I found that the lilac bush has buds on it!  Yay, finally!

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Yes.. there is hope ~ SPRING is coming!  🙂

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And I did catch a shot of a little sparrow looking warily at me.  I think I interrupted its singing performance…

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Okay, so back to the wallpaper…

Afterwards, I went online to read up a bit and watched numerous “how to” videos on wallpaper removal, and I’ve decided to go out today and get some chemical wallpaper removal stuff.  I really don’t like using chemicals.  I prefer using more natural methods of doing things, but I think it may help me get the rest of this done more effectively.  I’m just going to get a small amount and test it out to see how it works.  I also have the removal of the downstairs bathroom and the kitchen wallpaper looming ahead of me at some point in the future, and I really need to find the most efficient way to do this.

Here is the one photo that was taken of my wallpaper removal misadventures. My daughter came in and snapped this as I was nearing the finishing line removing what was remaining on my “whole entire wall” that I did.  😉

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And look what was just below me underneath that window as I worked…  my little garden box.  Doesn’t look like much, still all covered in snow.  😦

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But… the lilacs are budding and eventually the temps will be rising, so hopefully I’ll be digging around in you soon little garden.  ♥

Gotta take care of this wallpaper first, anyway…

😉

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Remodeling and Redecorating: The Story Continues…

Aside from my having a serious case of spring fever, and being filled with anticipation and excitement about being able to get back out in my garden again, I also have remodeling and redecorating on my mind.

Those of you who have been “rambling” with me for a while are aware that I recently moved back home and began updating my mom’s house.  Last summer I began a series of posts entitled “Relocating, Remodeling, & Readjustments” to share about some of that.  I have them listed under “Home Improvement” in my categories section if you care to take a look at the suffering and torture I’ve endured thus far.  😉

Seriously though, it really has been quite an undertaking,  I’m a bit on the girlie side and not the handyman/handywoman type, so it’s been very challenging for me, to say the least.

Most of the focus so far has been on the upstairs of the house, as all of our bedrooms needed major updating prior to moving in (I nearly killed myself redoing the floors in mine and my mom’s rooms).  But there is still one room remaining upstairs that needs doing ~ the bathroom.  And before beginning any updates on the downstairs, I really want to get that finished first.

I found an old draft from August that I had started writing about the bathroom and thought I would publish it now since I am contemplating once again about taking care of some bathroom business…

Relocating, Remodeling, & Readjustments ~ Bathroom Business

Next up on our list of things to take care of at my mom’s house is the bathroom.

Over the course of time things tend to wear out, and one of those things was the bath/shower fixture in my mom’s main bathroom.  Some of the tile had shifted away and separated from around the faucet area, so a bit of leaking had developed which could cause serious problems down the road.  That would be bad…

With my not having a clue as how to do anything in the realm of plumbing, my mom called a local plumber and made arrangements to have this fixed.

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Well, a plumber came and while he was out attending to something in his truck, I went in there to sneak a peek and snap a quick photo of his progress. Here it is after the old fixture had been removed.  It looks pretty yucky inside there.

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In order for him to have full access to the pipes, he needed to create access from the other side of the wall, so he cut a hole in the wall inside my daughter’s closet.

This photo is the view from that side.  You can see that the wall directly behind the faucet definitely had some water damage from leaking behind the tile.  Of course the worst of it had already been cut out.

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No worries about having a gaping hole in my daughter’s closet because he put in a nice little access panel over it.

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Here is the new fixture, all bright and shiny!

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Next up was getting a handyman to come in to replace/repair the wall behind it and fix the tile.  Plumbers don’t do that part.  We found a very nice handyman guy, named Joe to do the work for us.  His fee was reasonable and he turned out being handy for a few other things as well.

We ran into a bit of a problem with the tile because the new fixture is not the same size/shape as the old one, so we were not able to reuse the tile that was removed from the area, and matching the color of tile from 36 years ago… yeah, not gonna happen.  We thought it would be nice to find a complimentary contrasting color that would pick up some of the colors in the floor tile, but that proved to be more difficult than it was worth.

So we just got white.

Blah.  Not the fanciest, but it does blend in somewhat with the white tub, and it’s 100 times better than it was.  Handyman Joe did a great job!

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While he was waiting for the grout to dry, Joe fixed my bedroom closet door that kept slipping out of its track whenever I opened or closed it, adjusted my daughter’s bedroom door that would get stuck shut whenever you closed it all the way, and fixed two other pieces of tile that were missing from another section of the wall in the bathroom.  All at no extra charge!

He also came back a different day and framed in around the inside of windows in the bathroom for us.  This was something left unfinished from when my parents remodeled last time.  There had been a problem with ordering the right sized windows or something like that, and since there were curtains that my parents kept closed the majority of the time in there, it just never got attended to.  But I want to hang blinds in there so we needed it to be finished off a little better.

Before

And after…

There is still a thin unfinished strip of space that was uneven between the piece of wood he put in and the window, but all I need to do is paint it white and I think it’ll look just fine once I put the blinds in.  🙂

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My mom’s tub also had a crack in it, so we had to get that repaired as well.  Handyman Joe didn’t do that type of work, so my mom called a placed called Surface Specialties to fix it.

Here is is before…

And after…

Nothing like posting a completely blank photo that looks like absolutely nothing, but this is the repaired area so there ya have it.  😉

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The next plans for remodeling as far as this bathroom goes will be replacing this wallpaper that is peeling.  I’ve never removed wallpaper before so I’m kinda, sorta worried about the process.

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Also, the light fixtures in the bathroom look quite outdated (as is the case in the rest of the house as well), but I like these that are hanging in there, so I don’t care if they’re outdated, they’re staying.  🙂

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So there you have it, that was the draft that I previously wrote about the bathroom.  Taking off the wallpaper is first on my agenda of what to do in there next, and I’m feeling really nervous about it.  I’ll have to read up on it, hopefully it doesn’t give me too much trouble.  Wish me luck…