I stripped wallpaper this weekend and it sucked ass. What sucked even more was how completely unprepared I was for the absolute sucky-ness of the ass sucking experience. (take THAT google!)
When I moved into this town home five years ago it was almost entirely wallpapered. The person who picked out the floor/wall decor during construction was clearly into country prints and the color pink. Never before had I seen a hunting duck wallpaper print in pink - but there it was. In my living room.
My sister was living with me in those days and she helped me strip the wallpaper from every room in the house - except my bath. I told her I'd do that one myself. Naturally I procrastinated and procrastinated because taking down wallpaper is not my favorite past time. Besides, I thought I'd be able to knock it out any old time - after all, the rest of the house came down pretty easy! Huge sheets of wallpaper at a time! Why would I think that my bath would be different? Well, it was. Painfully different.
The assholes who threw these town homes together basically stuck wallpaper to the drywall and went about their business. For some reason, in my bath, they decided to use concrete to adhere the wallpaper to the drywall. I spent all of Friday scraping tiny little bits off at a time and cursing the builders up one side and back down the other.
It's not as if I were completely unequipped for the job! I had the paper tiger and the wallpaper remover spray as well as a putty knife to get under the edge of the wallpaper. However, nothing I tried gave me any kind of headway. It was so incredibly frustrating that I gave up around 10pm and had a little cry.
Saturday morning I woke up eager to find a solution to my wallpaper dilemma and googled "stubborn wallpaper removal" for answers. There were many suggestions from fabric softener to scrubbing bubbles. I tried a mix of fabric softener on the walls and that didn't work. Next I broke out my Rowenta iron and tried steaming a small part. It worked a little, but I couldn't see myself pumping the "steam" button on my iron for the rest of the day.
So, I googled "rent wallpaper steamer" but the rental costs for one day were as much as buying a steamer outright! Feeling ambitious, I grabbed Muffin and hoped over to Lowe's to buy one for myself. It was hot, sweaty work but that steamer took down not only the wallpaper but all the gunky glue as well! Best $50 I have spent in a long while.
Let me put this in perspective - on Friday I went through all four discs of the LOTR Fellowship of The Ring and Two Towers Extended DVD editions while attempting to take down wallpaper - with minimal results. On Saturday I finished taking down the wallpaper during the first disc of Return Of The King. (Hey - I like background noise while I labor! Besides, the Lord Of The Rings trilogy is sufficiently long enough to get me through most projects.) All Praise The Steamer!
Now it looks as though I've decorated my bathroom in "Post Cold War Russia" chic complete with holes in the drywall. I've moved in Muffin's bathroom for the duration of this horrific project. Here's hoping for smooth sailing from now on! (yeah, right.)