4.30.2010

The Never-Ending Project

Today, dear readers, I would like to share with you a simple truth that I have learned in my nearly thirty-seven years on this earth. Get ready, because it's a good one...

THE DEVIL INVENTED WALLPAPER.

Allow me to explain.

When the hubby and I purchased the Ha house, many of the rooms were decorated with hideous wallpaper. At that point in time, I didn't view this obvious design error as a problem. I simply pulled the blue-green paper embellished with shimmering gold ropes from the bathroom walls and replaced it with a fresh coat of paint.

In each instance, the paper practically fell off the walls. It was as if the house was begging me to free it from it's overly papered decorum. I would literally have a room de-papered and repainted, with the furniture back in it's place, within two days tops. The process couldn't have been easier.

The master bathroom was the last room in the house in need of an update. For some reason, I couldn't bring myself to pull down one more strip of wallpaper. I was burned out. I opted to leave the room alone, telling myself that the paper wasn't that bad, and set my sights on another project.

Years passed, and the wallpaper remained. I pushed all thoughts of pulling the stuff down from my mind. That is until one fateful day in August of 2008. To make a long story short it involved a dripping faucet, a failed A/C unit and a closed bathroom door. Needless to say the wallpaper had begun to peel itself.

Now that my hand had been forced, I was filled with a new enthusiasm to rid my home of the last bit of unsightly wallpaper. I decided to start up by the ceiling, since the paper was already conveniently loose. Within ten minutes the walls were completely paper free about half-way down. I was convinced I would have the entire paper-removal process finished in under a half-an-hour.

I had no idea how wrong I was.

As I begin to try and remove the wallpaper on the lower half of the walls, I quickly realized that the stuff was securely attached. The paper no longer peeled off in massive sheets, but in flakes and crumbs. Not only that, but only the top layer would release. The backing of the wallpaper would have to be removed separately.

I decided to enlist my repertoire of wallpaper removal tricks and tools in an effort to release the glue. I broke out my scrapers, scorers and razor blades. I used steamers and insane amounts of chemical strippers to try to speed the process. I have made numerous trips to Home Depot and Lowes in search of advise.

Nothing worked. Nothing.

Twenty months later, I am still working on the project. Just yesterday, I spent two hours peeling tiny bits of paper off the wall. I am not exaggerating when I tell you that the largest piece was the size of a penny. Despite my best efforts, I was only able to remove the top layer of paper from an area approximately one square foot in size. IN TWO WHOLE HOURS.

AAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!

Sorry for the outburst. I think I feel better now.

I am happy to report that I am finally on the home stretch. If things go according to plan, I should have the last remaining bits of paper removed and the walls repainted by the time my boy gets out of school on May 21, despite the hectic end-of-the-year schedule.

I can hardly wait to have this project finished once and for all. Wish me luck.

4 comment(s). Leave yours!:

gretchen from lifenut said... Best Blogger Tips

What a nightmare! 20 months of misery for penny-sized scraps? Eek.

I've never had to deal with wallpaper, but I made a mental note of a Trading Spaces episode I once watched where Vern Yip painted over wallpaper and it looked great. Didn't know you could do that.

Are you taking photos of your progress?

helen said... Best Blogger Tips

Oh, yes...my sincere sympathy for you during this time.
Hang in there, Mrs. Ha!

shoutingforha said... Best Blogger Tips

Gretchen - I have neglected to snap a single picture. I think I have been so annoyed with the entire ordeal that it never occurred to me to document my progress.

Maybe I will take a few after my next scraping session. I'm sure the world is dying to see a tiny pile of wallpaper bits. :)

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