Welcome to my adventures in home improvements and repair. I thought about making another blog, but then I realized… “Oh gosh. I really hope I don’t have enough material to keep a house repair blog alive for very long.” And, well, I am thinking that maybe you, dear readers, might have house repair tips and tricks for a first time home buyer like me. Or maybe you’d get a kick out of reading my trials and errors. Or maybe we’re in the same boat and you’re just glad there’s someone out there in the same situation as you. Either way, feel free to skip this non-food post.
So here was my first DIY house project to tackle: Rooster wallpaper. This was covering all of the walls in the kitchen. It didn’t seem to absorb any smells, but it was older and I wanted to take it out and paint the walls to freshen the look up.
Down with the roosters. I bought a a Wagner 1-gallon wallpaper steamer from Amazon for about $47.00. It takes a little while to heat up, but the large rectangle covers a lot of area and did a good job of removing the roosters. I was making good time when I noticed the mint green walls underneath the wallpaper had this sticker on it:
Hunh. It was so smooth. And that Spice design going on is really 1950s cute. Was it a sticker? This looks like it was behind a phone.
Any way, I kept going and… OH DEAR GOD. I think… no. No. It’s… <EVERY EXPLETIVE IN THE BOOK>. It’s rooster wallpaper over painted wallpaper.
Noooooo. Yellow was the original wall color.
Upon further inspection, this wasn’t a quirky sticker, but the original/1st layer of wallpaper that fused to the wall for 80% of where it was applied.
However, this wall everything just came off, including some mesh backing which was behind the original wallpaper. I’m not sure if I was supposed to rip that off, but it was practically falling off on its own, so rip it I did.
The rest of the walls, well, that wallpaper needed to come off. So, 2 rounds of removing wallpaper. And painted wallpaper is SO HARD to remove. Albany John picked up WP Chomp wallpaper remover from a local hardware store for about $7 for a 32 oz spray bottle. Buy WP Chomp if you have tough wallpaper. The steamer barely removed any of it, and I was softening the drywall if I left the steamer on for too long. After spraying WP Chomp, it was much easier to remove, basically rendering it like regular wallpaper, instead of wallpaper that feels like it was applied with super glue.
And I know it looks ugly with the glue everywhere, but once you wash the walls it looks a lot nicer. And then you can start repairing and painting.
Up next: my adventures in painting and poor interior design taste.