Posts Tagged ‘clay paste’

Counting Shadows On The Wall

June 15, 2018

Digital Image

Digital Image


Here is a paper that has been in a master bathroom in a home in River Oaks for many years. This wall faces a wall of windows.

The dark areas you see in the photo are where a piece of art was removed from the wall, and, below that, where two towels had hung on towel racks (the rods have been removed and you are looking at the support brackets).

The picture and the towels kept sunlight away from the wallpaper, while the unprotected areas faded due to exposure to sunlight from the window.

Some wallpapers are dubbed “fade-resistant.” This one was not. This particular brand is printed on what we call pulp stock, which is usually a British product, and the inked layer has no coating, so it is not likely to hold up well against light or water or abrading or the likes.

I also think that the previous installer’s methods might have influenced the fading of the paper. The paper was hung directly on Sheetrock, with no primer. The drywall could have leeched into the wallpaper, causing discoloration. A primer would have prevented this.

The installer also used clay-based paste. This stuff is really sticky, but I think it’s icky – it is slimy and hard to wipe off woodwork, and it has a tan color that I have seen work its way through wallpapers, including grasscloth, many, many times.

If paste stains are bleeding through wallpaper, perhaps they are pulled more, or perhaps less, toward a source of light -and it could differ if it’s sunlight or a light bulb, too. And an obstacle such as a framed picture or a towel hanging from a bar a half an inch away from the paper block some of that light, and that could all have an effect, too.

And remember that towels are often damp, and that dampness hanging next to, or even touching, the wall, could cause changes to the paper and the paste and the surface below.

Just musings. When I look at existing wallpaper, or strip off some other installer’s work, I always am fascinated by the surface, the methods, etc.

Dry Hanging a Photo Mural

August 16, 2012

Re that photo mural by Photo Wall that I put up earlier this week, it was printed on what the manufacturer calls a “non woven” backing, which is quite a bit thicker and spongier than most traditional murals.

The instructions suggested pasting the wall instead of the back of the paper. I usually ignore these instructions and paste the paper, as with a standard paper. (Some day I’ll blog about my thoughts on “paste the wall” … not fond of it, for many reasons.)

Anyway, because this photo mural had a glossy surface, and because there was little pattern to hide flaws, I worried that pasting and then booking (folding pasted side to pasted side) might cause creases on the front of the mural.

So I went ahead and did the paste-the-wall technique, something I’ve only done a time or two previously.

It went well, surprisingly well. Since it was a simple accent wall, there were no toilets to paste behind and no cabinets or decorative molding to paste around, so pasting was fairly easy – although it meant extra trips up and down the ladder.

The mural panels unrolled nicely without creasing, and they adhered to the paste quite well, while still being able to slide around when I needed to reposition them. The seams butted together perfectly, and not too much paste got onto the edges, which was a concern of mine. The pattern match was spot-on, and the material absorbed the paste nicely without bubbling or swelling.

My only complaint is that the clay paste dried faster than I wanted it to. With the paste-the-wall technique, you paste a section the length and width of each strip, extending just a little beyond the width, to be sure there is paste at the edges of each strip. It was this extra 1/2″ or so that tended to dry befor I could finish hanging the first strip and get the next one to the wall.

It ended up looking great, and the homeowners are delighted.

Houston wallpaper hanger

Discolored Patch

February 8, 2012

I wrote previously about a job where I replaced one short piece over a door, which had been damaged by a water leak. The original wallpaper was a white grasscloth, that had been discolored – either by time, exposure to light, paste, or other.

Either way, the left over paper in the box that I was to use to replace the damaged strip was white, while the paper on the rest of the walls was tan. I discussed the color difference with the homeowner, and explained that there would be a very noticeable difference in color between the new patch and the existing paper. She was eager to get damaged piece replaced, and felt it would look better than the water stained piece hanging away from the wall. So I did the repair.

I removed the stained piece of grasscloth, scraped out loose Sheetrock damaged by the water leak, refloated the wall, sanded, and primed.

Replacing one piece in the middle of a wall is tricky, but it’s trickier even still when it’s a thick product like grasscloth, and one that can’t be wet or touched like you would a normal paper.
I was very pleased that I was able to get the new patch to fit the space perfectly. The repair looked great.

Except for the very noticeable color difference. It showed up even more, with the fresh new strip on the wall instead of in the box.

The homeowner noticed it, too, but still felt it looked better than when the damaged water stained strip was in place.

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