Stripping Wallpaper In Guest Room

The weekend was a wash out. We didn’t get any work done on the boat. On Saturday afternoon, we stripped wallpaper from the walls of the guest room. It’s a pain in the ass job. The best method we’ve found for our walls is using a Sonic Crafter oscillating tool with the scraper attachment. With a little force most of the layers of wallpaper peel off. In some areas we need to go back and do some detail work. The walls under all the wallpaper are a terracotta color. It feels kinda chalky?

We switched off scraping throughout the afternoon—my hands couldn’t handle the vibration. In about fours hours we got majority of the room done. My enthusiasm for our speed was abandoned when we discovered bad cracking and damage on the inside wall. We started jacking up the house when we first moved in and the damage was due to house being lifted. At this point I gave up. The wall in all likelihood will have to be replaced, so why waste my energy? We had a huge mess on the floor and I was hungry. I took a shower and Greg finished up stripping the damage wall. He’s much more patient then me.

On Sunday, I cleaned up the entire room top to bottom. Taking care to wipe down all the walls and floor so that the dust wouldn’t travel all over the house. I took a two hour nap feeling overwhelmed by the project again. The project consumes you to the point that you live in denial of it. Mess, wood, and tools fill our rooms but I hardly notice it anymore. In a way I find it amazing what you can deal with when you have no other choice. I realize I’m sounding a bit dramatic but you have days when you feel like giving up and wonder why you are torturing yourself. I would kill for a bathroom that smelled nice and didn’t have stained vinyl on the floor.



Related Posts:
Guest Room Prep
Video: Paint In Den Stripped
Cleaning Up Living Room Mess


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

You may also like

20 Comments

  1. Oh, this post is so familiar…the mess…the dust…the frustration. The wondering of how the heck you are actually living in such conditions…the longing for a room that is clean and smells good….the endless horrible wallpaper scraping, only to uncover even bigger disasters beneath. We are painstakingly renovating our 108 year old house while living in it too. I don’t even remember what it’s like to live in a house where you don’t HAVE to wear shoes everywhere. Just hang in there, and know you aren’t suffering alone! :)

       0 likes

  2. ps : don’t give up. i’ve had that bad in our house, but there is nothing that can’t be fixed; you’ll get thru it and it will be so rewarding then.

       0 likes

  3. Oh my, that doesn’t look like fun. I can’t begin to say my level of frustration is the same as yours but some days I wish I could blink like Jeannie and have this 150 year old house be fixed, decorated and comfortable. Today happens to be one of those days. Keep pluggin…you’ll get there!

       0 likes

  4. Katy,

    I am no expert on walls and wallpaper *but* we have a house with this type of wall “cover”–a chalky, terra-cotta paint color–and the historian tells me it is the original paint. It is chalky because of the calcite used in paint of its time. We have chosen to leave the paint as it is and had a painter come in and patch/match the areas that were in really tough shape. I’ve never seen it elsewhere in town–it’s not the look for everyone, but it is unusual. Good luck and happy renovating!

       0 likes

  5. Judging by the comments, I think there are a lot of us who understand and can commiserate from experience. I’m aching for a place to cook after 2 years of toaster oven meals and washing dishes in the bathtub. Sometimes I wish we could just sell our old shack, rent a condo at the beach and drink mojitos in our newfound spare time. Taking a few weeks off to live our lives and spend time with friends usually brings me back around. Personally I’d think you were a bit of a phony if you didn’t feel like giving up now and again.

    PS- Love how that fabric panel brings some sweetness and hope to that rough looking room!

       0 likes

  6. I honestly don’t know how you do it. You definitely have more willpower than me. I would have given up a long time ago! Good luck!

       0 likes

  7. You poor thing. I’m halfway through our renovations on a large 4 bed Victorian apartment, which although has every period feature imaginable some crazy person covered them all up with woodchip at some point in the 70s and then painted over it with gloss on a regular basis for the next 35yrs. The smell of wall paper stripper makes me physically ill (with one more rather large room of stripping still to go!). It will all be worth it in the long term. The beauty of period home is worth the hard work. Hang in there! Aoife x

       0 likes

  8. I was in a similar predicament in one of my rooms. I had a crew of about 6 over and we spent an entire weekend stripping about a dozen or more layers of wallpaper off the walls (which were a similar yellow-earthy color to yours underneath). Well, after all that work (the room is on the FOURTH floor, so we also had to haul everything downstairs to the trash — a million wet and soggy bags of wallpaper), it turns out the wallpaper had been a nearly structural element.

    The walls were in terrible shape underneath (due to a roof collapse that had happened before I owned the house) and I had the option of knocking them all down and putting up drywall (again, on the fourth floor — lots of hauling and cost) or learning how to repair plaster. I chose the latter, then re-wallpapered the room. I could have just put the new paper up over the old, but live and learn.

    One day you’ll look back and be so proud of all the work you’ve done!

       0 likes

  9. OMG, I can relate! Our house is 240 years old and I’ve been in your shoes many times. This is the time to work outside; in the garden and on the boat. If it rains, take a nap. Give yourselves a break.

       0 likes

  10. thanks for being honest!
    sometimes it sucks so bad, you wonder why you ever left that manicured air conditioned apartment

    my husband just gave up on our house for the billionth time, he also reads your blog so this post should spark an interesting conversation…

       0 likes

  11. i hear ya. i have a six-room house (including the hall, which is the only room not scraped, patched, sanded, primed and painted yet) and i’ve done the lion’s share of the work myself, starting with 4-6 layers of wallpaper per wall. good luck! you can do it!

       0 likes

  12. The project is certainly overwhelming, and you are allowed to feel that way. But I want you to know that what you’ve accomplished is amazing! Not only are you getting to create a home that in the end you really love, but you’re making a great investment turning this place around. When it’s finally done and beautiful, you’ll know that you EARNED it. I’m sorry you had a horrible time working on those walls. Maybe looking at your lovely garden will help re-motivate you for another day.

       0 likes

  13. What really impresses me is that you can do all that work and still find time to blog about it! I’ve been renovating my house in spurts and stops for eight years now can’t seem to find the energy to blog about any of it. I sometimes feel like a slave to the property– but when I manage to complete a project its all worth it. Your house is going to be so gorgeous when you are done!

       0 likes

  14. I too lived this mess you are living, as a matter of fact I am living it for the 2nd time as we moved to another home ! I said to my husband never again, but it is so rewarding in the end to see all your hard work and personal touches bring life to an old house once again ! Be careful though, I think renovating is a disease, once it gets in your blood, you can’t get rid of it, already I am thinking an old farmhouse is in my future, have I lost my mind Katie ?

       0 likes

  15. your post made me smile. we’ve been working on our 1912 colonial revival in portland maine for months and just when i thought i was about to have a fu@$*&! melt down this weekend, progress. hang in there.
    xo,
    nicole

       0 likes

  16. Congrats on getting the whole room done in one day. We’ve been stripping paint, mold, and black glue from bead board and skim coating for weeks. Talk about dust traveling. I’ve cleaned the house multiple times and also paid people to do it and we just have to do it again. It’s very frustrating. And I’m allergic to the dust. Anyway, yeah, last night I was thinking this whole idea was insane, and lucky Katy because they can just take their time and don’t have to worry about getting a renter….anyway, thanks for this post and don’t worry, it will be beautiful when you are done.

       0 likes

  17. The renovations my 50 year old house requires are nothing compared to yours, but I’ve been in a similar mind frame for the last week. Why do we continue to torture ourselves with these impossible projects?

    And then one day you realize you’re starting to make some progress. And your re-energized enough to start putting things back together. Hang in there!

       0 likes