Posts Tagged ‘economical’

From 20 Years of Red to Sweet Light Floral

February 5, 2022
Red is a classic dining room color, and painted walls served well since the late ’90’s. This homeowner has classic taste – note the elegant moldings below the chair rail and around the windows.
The update is lighter and brighter and opens up the room, making it feel larger.
Note the wallpaper around the corner on the right.
This is the paper in the adjoining hallway, which has been in place for decades. The new pattern coordinates beautifully in theme and color!
Close-up. Roses and script.
Norwall is a very economical brand (something like $25 per double roll on sale). Not my favorite quality, because the gritty paper backing can absorb humidity and separate from the thick vinyl surface, plus the seams tend to “pouch” a bit and don’t look great. But I’ve discovered that rolling a bit of wallpaper paste onto the wall under the seam areas will help to “suck down” the edges, creating better seams. I also do believe that the manufacturer has improved the substrate.
I was pleased with the way the seams looked on this install. You’re looking at a very close-up picture. Once the paper is dried and from two feet away, these seams will be invisible. In fact, the homeowner kept walking around the room remarking how she couldn’t even find a seam. Note the slightly textured surface.

The home is in the far west area of Houston.

” Creative Wiring ” On Powder Room Light Fixture

January 1, 2022

Whoa-ah! No electrical box in the wall, and wires just fished out of a hole … Probably safe, but it’s definitely not up to code. I’m guessing that it was not possible to center the light fixture on the wall, possibly due to the location of studs or other. This light fixture is coming down and will be replaced with something else. What it means to me is, I’ll put up the wallpaper, and will just have to hope that the new light fixture can be placed within the footprint of the existing hole in the wall. To install the new fixture, which may involve inserting a proper electrical box, the electrician may have to cut holes in the wall – and the wallpaper. Even if he manages to do this carefully and with minimal cutting into the wall, it’s very possible that Big Bubba will bumble and get dirt or mess of some kind onto the wallpaper. It’s hard to fix things like this. Often it means stripping off all the wallpaper on that wall, and rehanging the whole wall. Not fun for me, and not economical for the homeowner.
The next day I learned that the homeowner is not going to reuse the light fixture, so I took it down completely, and then was able to remove the mounting plate. Now it’s possible to see what the heck went on. There is, indeed, an electrical box inside the wall. A quarter-moon sliver of the round electrical box is visible at the right. The box was not centered on the wall, possibly due to placement of studs in the wall or some other reason. So when the current light fixture went up, the mounting plate had to be moved to the left, in order to center it over the sink. The electrical wires were fished out of that small gap and were long enough to meet the light fixture a few inches to the left. There must have been a hole in the wall to repair, because I can see a chunk of new drywall that was added at some point.
Of concern to me is that the new light fixture can be installed without mucking up the new wallpaper. Some fixtures have such a small base that they barely cover a standard electrical box. Here the base has to be large enough to cover both the new, centered mounting plate, and the hole in the wall which provides access for the wires. I brought the wallpaper as tightly as possible around that hole; if the electrician needs a larger hole for access, he can simply cut small bits of the wallpaper away. If the new base is a wider rectangle, it will be wide enough to cover that hole and also be centered over the sink – problem solved!
Of course, there is also the worry that the new wallpaper might be soiled or scraped while the new fixture is being put up.

Solid Vinyl Wallpaper is Not Good in Humid Areas

September 18, 2019


I don’t recommend the economical (i.e. lower end) pre-pasted, solid-vinyl wallpapers in humid rooms. Yes, the vinyl will resist water and stains if it gets splashed. But that gritty paper backing sucks up moisture, even moisture in humid air. When it does, the paper expands. The top vinyl layer does not. So the expanding paper pushes the plastic surface away from the wall, as you see in these photos.

In a further scenario, the two layers actually delaminate (come apart) from one another. This sort of seam cannot be glued back down.

It’s best to avoid this type of paper.