Friday, March 21, 2008

Let the (redecorating) games begin!

We plan to paint every single room in this 100+ year-old house, but before that, we need to repair/replaster the walls in at least five rooms, so we're taking it a room at time. We decided to start with the most offensive (to my designer eyes) room, our bedroom.

It has a blue painted floor (I hate blue. There is nothing WRONG with blue, I just happen to hate it. Personal preference!), and had pink and blue floral wallpaper (I am not a big pink fan, either, especially pale pink.) Our furniture is maple/green, our duvet cover is shades of brown. We also have a creamy yellow bench in there. Every time I walked in, I felt like a drunken colour wheel had vomited all over the place. It was burning out my retinas: blue, pink, green, yellow, brown... YYYYYUCK!

So I have now stripped all the wallpaper (to paraphrase Buffy the Vampire slayer, "Wallpaper stripping is MY gift!"), and I swear the room looks better already, even with holes and cracks in the plaster walls, and various shades of puke-green paint (why? I don't know!) Our plaster professional is coming next week to start work!

I don't have handy a photo of the room completely stripped, but I do have these shots from the day I madly started peeling stuff off the walls, pre-steamer. Luckily, a lot of it came off really easily, and I steamed the rest. And also good was the fact that there were only at most two layers of wallpaper, and even that was only in a couple of spots. Somebody obviously did some stripping in here before me.

I also discovered that cats LOVE wallpaper. Here are Alex (front) and Julius, reclining on the floral mess. The cats haven't been getting enough airtime on my blog lately, so I will rectify that today.

This heinous floral border went around the whole room, in the middle of the wall, separating the top blue/pink floral paper from the bottom pink/white stuff. I was thrilled to rip it off:

My apologies to all who love borders and floral wallpaper. It's just not our bag, is all!

Here is Julius being his usual photogenic self:

Now this is the (original?) wallpaper I found in a few spots under the newer stuff. Can anyone hazard a guess as to its vintage? I don't think it's 100 years old. I was wondering if it was perhaps from the 30s or 40s?

This wall is at the head of our bed. Half of the wall has an 8-foot sheet of plywood over it, which had been wallpapered. We will leave it to the plaster professional to find out what nightmare is going on under here:

Something WILL be happening to the floor. We're not sure yet if we can stomach stripping it, but it will either be that or painting. We'll see; it absolutely cannot remain blue! All the floors downstairs (all origianl to the houseu) have been stripped and we love them.

As well, we've got furniture issues. We replaced our queen mattress with a king when we moved here (bliss!) but now of course our headboard and footboard, which match the maple/green furniture, no longer fit, and as far as I can tell, Shermag has stopped making this set. Wah! So I don't kow what we're going to do, but I hate not having a proper bedframe. We shall see what the budget has in store for us!

The puke-green showing under the wallpaper is the original painted plaster wall. And of course there's a cuppa tea on my nighttable.

This is where the narrow staircase from the kitchen comes up:

Old wallpaper meets new, and all of it is now in a landfill somewhere:

Wish us luck. I'm not looking forward to plaster dust, but I can't WAIT to paint the bedroom!


  1. Anonymous12:54 pm

    Oh MAN!! It's going to be just BEAUTIFUL when you're done with it. I just FEEL it :)). I think it's going to be some very lovely peaceful sanctuary. (but as you know, you REALLY NEED a proper bed.)

    It was good to finally see your furniture. It's lovely ... and does not belong with all that pink and blue business YIKES. You poor thing. what a trauma just entering your bedroom.

    but it's all going to be just wonderful. I'm really looking forward to following your redecorating process here. :)

  2. How cool Pnat!! I can't wait to see your before/after photos. Remember how we redid every room in our new house? Well, we have 1 room left and it is getting done this summer as soon as we are done homeschooling. I am so excited.

    Btw, I would want to vomit that wallpaper too. I know it is common in Victorian homes so that is why we have a 'beach' house.

  3. We'll have a blue room
    A new room for two room
    Where ev'ry day's a holiday
    Because you're married to me.

    Not like a ballroom
    A small room, a hall room
    Where I can smoke my pipe away
    With your wee head upon my knee.

    We will thrive on, keep alive on
    Just nothing but kisses
    With mister and missus
    On little blue chairs.

    You sew your trousseau
    And Robinson Crusoe
    Is not so far from worldly cares
    As our blue room far away upstairs!


  4. Anonymous9:24 am

    Wallpaper removal is such a chore. You're really doing well. I'm sure it will be lovely when completed.

  5. You guys are so encouraging. And Happy Wombat Boy, if I ever needed a reason to get rid of the blue, it's that song of yours (or more correctly, that song of Rodgers and Hart!) Although of COURSE every day is a holiday when you're married to Gordon. HAHAHAHA!

  6. Pnat,

    "heinous floral border" -- the phrase made me laugh! How do you really feel about the border!

    I'm glad to see that you're making progress on the house. It already looks great and you're slowly improving it.


Thank you for all your comments, which I love to read!