A couple days ago my daughter and I became keenly aware that she will begin her senior year in a little over two weeks. One of our main goals for her summer break was to remodel her bathroom. This house was a model home when we bought it and it came with wallpaper in every bathroom. That was 12 years ago and I have only removed the wallpaper off one of them.
Not only did we get this wallpaper but we got this terry cloth curtain thing as well. We thought it was cute when we bought the house. Now we think it’s just nasty.
My daughter was five when we bought the house so everything about the bathroom was perfect for her. Now she’s 17 and the room has been making her itchy for about 3 years. Can’t imagine why. I mean, what 17 year old girl doesn’t like primary colored stripes? Yesterday we started the remodel. We bought paint for this room because the color she wants is a bright, clear aqua and I don’t have the kind of white or blue to make that color from my Stash.
We also bought new flooring because this is the tile she’s been living with for the last 12 years. The thing about this kind of vinyl tile is that it’s so durable, you’ll never feel like it needs replacing. You will end up with a teenager walking on tiles fit for a nursery and wishing it was flammable. It’s not. This stuff will last forever.
So yesterday we started removing the wallpaper. We started in the afternoon and nearly got it done. It’s fairly therapeutic.
For all you out there who think,” I would’ve just painted over it,” you’re right; that would have been easier…………lazy! In bathrooms I just don’t like risking it. If you paint over wallpaper you are running the risk of the wallpaper failing at some point with all the steam it endures. If the wallpaper starts coming off and you’ve painted over it, it really sucks to remove it and you may have to sand through all the paint and paper to get to a clean surface. (Which is what you deserve for being so lazy) Sanding sucks and really, really sucks when you have to sand through anything with adhesive on it. Just don’t do it.
Upon removal we also discovered that the people who built the house took a shortcut and applied the wallpaper straight to the drywall. No priming beforehand. Awesome. It makes the job a little more difficult. The technique I’m using is:
- Tear off the top vinyl layer
- Spray the paper liner with a 50/50 mixture of vinegar and water
- Wait 5 minutes for the liner to get saturated
- Scrape it off with a taping knife
- Throw the wet gooey mess in the trashcan (or on the floor when you just don’t care anymore)
- Go back to step 2 and repeat the sequence 5 million times
We’ll have the rest torn off by this afternoon and start painting after it’s all clean and dry.