I'm in the process of cleaning out the bedroom before stripping the wallpaper but I thought I'd take a few last shots of it.
Gone will be the wallpaper, the turquoise floor (Benjamin Moore Calypso Blue) and the vintage Cape Cod cottage kind of look that I originally thought the house should have. So here goes...
When I bought the house just over four years ago, every single room except one had wallpaper dating from the '50s to the '70s. It seems a little strange to be stripping this wallpaper but after having done it so many times, I've worked out a method that works pretty well. I know they make a lot of different tools and solutions that are supposed to make it easier but I think most are a waste of money. The only tool I use is a wallpaper scraper with a changeable blade, a spray bottle, a scouring pad and a washcloth.
First, I look for seams up by the ceiling and starting at a corner, I peel off the top layer. All of the paper I've stripped seemed to have a top layer that could be peeled off leaving a paper layer on the wall. Really old wallpaper might not have this and one of those scoring tools might help the process.
Here's one wall after I've peeled off the top layer. Once this is done, I use a spray bottle of plain water to wet the paper.
Here I've sprayed alternating layers just so you can clearly see what's wet and what's not. I've put down a few layers of old towels just to catch overspray and water that runs down the wall.
The paper will absorb the water pretty quickly so keep spraying it so you can see a sheen. The idea is to reconstitute the glue. You'll see in places that the paper bubbles up as it expands. After about four applications of water and letting it sit about 15 minutes, I start testing the edges to see if it's separating.
This piece seems ready so I start peeling it off the wall.
This first piece came off almost in one piece.
If there are any stubborn spots, just spray them again and scrape them off with a wallpaper scraper.
After the paper is removed, there's still glue on the wall so I use a scouring pad and warm, soapy water to get most of the glue off the wall. Be sure to do this before the glue dries. Then follow up with a clean cloth to make sure all the glue is off the wall.
Once last piece and this section of the room is done. Isn't the pink pretty?
This section of four strips took my about half an hour. The white stripe down the wall is where there was some old water damage that I plastered over and primed before the wallpaper went up.
I still have blinds and curtain rods to take down and a little more cleaning out to do but I hope to get at least half of the room stripped today.
This door on the bathroom is my favorite door in the house. I just love the proportions of it. I can't wait to try my "Silent Paint Remover" but I want to wait until I can have all the windows open for ventilation or even take it outside on the porch to strip.
It might look good from a distance...
...but it's really caked with paint like most of the woodwork in the house.
I'll also strip the hardware using the chemical-free stripping method I've found very successful in the past. I experimented with painting the hinges silver and as you can see it wasn't really successful.
I've changed my mind at least three times about how the room will look. I'd really like to better integrate modern, vintage and antique elements so we'll see how that works out. I think it's easier said than successfully done.