Freshly sandwiched and in the throws of a mild chemical rash, I find myself struggling to think charitable thoughts about wallpaper and those who choose to hang it. Not easy after an afternoon spent swimming in chemical wallpaper stripper and moist paste. Maybe the town was out of paint, maybe the town was out of brushes or rollers; for whatever reason the people who built my house hung some wallpaper. They also neglected to prime the walls prior to hanging the paper ... grumble.

Still, I just ate a sandwich and that's pretty cool. Here is a picture of my newly remodeled bathroom:

Not my first or last internet toilet photo.

That photo is all brightly lit and pretty. Here's one with a hand-held fish eye lens. The lens obscured the flash and I like that it makes the room look more disgusting.

The white is drywall compound and the round corners are because physics or something.

For my first attempt to remove the paper, I tried a vinegar + water solution. I managed to tear up about a square foot of wall that way before moving on to a dish soap + water solution. Using dish soap, I tore up about four square feet of sheet rock. Then I saw this sequence of videos:

This is part 1 of 5.

That guy's advice seemed pretty legit, so I went to home depot and dropped a Jackson on a hard core wallpaper stripping rig.

Other kinds of strippers can also remove wallpaper, but chemical stripper is the most affordable.

Now that I was using a lawn sprayer, I showered the holy living cresandwiches out of that wallpaper. Over the next five hours I would deposit 3 gallons of dif-infused magic on my bathroom walls. Here is what I learned:

1. Stripping wallpaper is pasty, disgusting work. You, the floor, the bottoms of your shoes, and your stomach will all become covered in chemical stripper and paste.

2. You have to use a lot of liquid. When I was working with vinegar and soap I wasn't even approaching the necessary amount of wet on my walls. Spray each section until its soaked, then spray the next section, and when you reach the end spray the first section again. Repeat for an hour. Then, when you actually get ready to peel, spray like an angry giant super skunk until you feel stupid and wasteful - that means you are ready.

3. Vinegar, soap, dif - it's probably just placebo. You have to believe something to keep at it long enough to be effective. Vinegar smells bad, soap is slimy, and dif feels like industrial chemicals. At least the dif comes with instructions.

4. Electricity is a sneaky jerk and will make alliances with disgusting paste if it means an opportunity to blast you.

About #4: When I was cleaning some fallen paste out of a wall socket, I shocked myself. It turns out the circuit that goes to the wall socket in my bathroom is different than the one that runs the light and the fan. I had the cover plate off and stuck my finger in there to clean out some gunk and BAM, education. There does not seem to be any lasting damage.

I still need to scrape off some rogue paste before I can move on to the drywall repair phase, but I feel like I'm over the hump. Julie is picking out some cool paint colors and I'm looking into dual flush toilets and other ridiculous bathroom accessories. I'll be super happy when I get those walls primed and ready for the fancy paint.

Greg picture!

Julie teaches Greg to hold nails while she hammers.


4 Is More said…
Yay, Greg!! Seriously, who hangs wallpaper without priming the walls??

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