Friday, March 9, 2012

More Archeology

Every wall and ceiling in this house, built in 1923, is covered in wallpaper, up to four layers! Family and friends have asked why we don't just paint over it. Well, here are some pictures to answer the question:

Corner of Master Bedroom

Same corner with ceiling

Above the window in the Master Bedroom
The paper has separated from the wall in a major way in most of the rooms and the plaster underneath needs some repair too.

Besides stripping part of the wall in the bedroom I've begun stripping in the stairwell and upstairs hallway. Actually I got really sick of the paper one day and just started ripping!

Before I moved in my husband made me promise that I wouldn't pull up the carpet. I broke that promise after about a month. I kept smelling something foul and discovered it was the carpet. Noble helped me move furniture around and I did a section at a time until all the oak floors were uncovered.

This is the color of the 40 year old smelly, dirt encrusted carpet. When I pulled it up I found that the rubber pad was decomposing and had to be swept up (sort of like the black stuff in the bedroom). The stairs are the last part and I've procrastinated because it's so tedious.

This is the color of the wallpaper and the paneling in the living room, stairwell and upstairs hallway:
Dusty pink, mauve and blue/grey

Floral paneling that looks like it should be in a Doublewide

I began peeling off paper and immediately liked what I saw:
Warm floral - same shades as green carpet
The next layer was very nice too:
Tweed with tan, cream and green
But the earliest layer is my favorite:
Tan with white fern leaf pattern
Any of the three layers underneath would have been lovely. Why did she (the former owner, a little old lady) choose the incongruously cool pink and blue when she had a warm olive green carpet?

The pink and blue finally got to me and I started ripping. Some time soon I'll finish the removal. In the meantime I'm looking for information about repairing the plaster and preparing it for painting.


  1. Lovely colors

  2. I know it's so much work, but I have to admit I love seeing all the layers. So fun to see the various eras represented...I'm assuming the top layer was isntalled in the'80's when those shades of pink and blue were "in"? Will be fun to see the finished product!

  3. I love wallpaper. However, I do not love taking it off. It was a huge job to remove it all at my mom's house. Paint is so much easier to change when you're tired of the color on your walls.

    Also, I have vertigo too. I would consider mine a very mild case.