Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Blessing #168 - Bye Bye Wall Paper

When I started working in the bathroom......that sounded weird. When I started remodeling our bathroom, the first place I started was the wallpaper border.  It had to go!

This is not the most exciting blog post ever, but I had to search around online, and maybe if you have to do this, you won't.  I looked online for different ideas on how to remove the floral paper.  I found different recipes for homemade wall paper removal.  Some called for 1/2 fabric softener and 1/2 hot water, and others called for 1/3 fabric softener and 2/3 hot water. I made mine with the thirds mixture and put it in an old spray bottle I had.

The sources I read online said, "Spray it on. Wait ten minutes.  Pull the border right off."  That is not how it went.  I sprayed the mixture on, and it slid right off the vinyly top layer and down the wall (as you can see in the picture above). After I did that, the border was still stuck on strong.  It wasn't budging.

I knew I had seen my parents use a wall paper scorer when they removed wall paper in the past.  The scorer pokes holes in the vinyl top part of the paper so the remover can get to the paper part of the wall paper.

I did not have a scorer, and I did not feel like going out and getting one.  Plan B was just to completely rip of the top vinyl layer and just spray the paper layer. The vinyl layer pulled right off leaving the paper layer on the wall.

This time the mixture was able to completely saturate the paper layer.  After ten minutes, I pulled the paper layer right off.  I was afraid it would shred, but when I moved slowly it came off in one piece.

After an hour of work goodbye wall paper!  It was so easy, I was mad at myself for waiting a year to do it.

The boys room is covered in teddy bear wallpaper up to the chair rail, and I'm sure it was considered cute at one time.  Now, all those teddy bears just look creepy kind of like Precious Moments figurines.  This spring, I am going to try to remove it when I can open up all the windows as I work with the fabric softener.

The big lesson that I learned is that wallpaper is fickle. There are different types of wallpaper so what worked for me might not work for you.  I think what made this so easy is that the wall had a shiny satin paint on it and not a flat paint.  However, if you have some wall paper you need to get rid of, give this method a try.


  1. Did you choose the thirds mixture because it is odd?!

  2. Did you choose the thirds mixture because it is odd?!