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Very Difficult Installation Today – Client Not Happy

July 14, 2012

Paper shrunk, leaving white wall showing between strips of paper

I hang a lot of Thibaut papers, and generally love them. But recently I hung this
in a bathroom – it was nothing short of a wrestling match!

The paper was thick and stiff and hard to unroll and hard to control. The stock (backing) was dry and absorbant, and soaked up the paste, making it very difficult to get the paste spread on the back. It dried before I could get it to the wall, delaminating (coming apart) in some place, was difficult to bend around corners, and would not “slip” on the wall.

I tried Roman’s 838 and then Shur-Stick 234, and the paper would not allow either paste to be spread on its back, instead sucking it into the stock. In despiration, I tried Shur-Stik C-11, which is a very low-adhesion, clear paste made for delicate materials like grasscloth.

Finally I found a paste that would hold the paper to the wall, and that would allow me to slilp and slide the paper into place. It was still way difficult to work with, and I was there until 9:30 pm – hanging just 6 rolls! It looked nice once I was finally done.

Unfortunately, the next day, the homeowners awoke to some paper coming loose from the wall, and most of thte seams shrinking and showing white beneath them. They were not happy, and decided to remove the paper and choose something else.

I hate it when jobs go bad and when clients are unhappy.

The only good things – these are about the most lovely, easy people to work with. And the Thibaut company, instead of being contrary like manufacturers generally are, actually did a test hang of the paper in their factory (using different paste and hanging ONE strip on a FLAT wall – a far cry from the many strips I had to hang, around turns, fancy moldings, fur downs, window, etc., but still, they were responsive and did try), and sent a nice personal reply from someone at the facory who actually understands wallpaper and cares about customer satisfaction.

I’m going to rehang the room this Friday…I sure hope the new selection is much more cooperative!

NOTE:  I just redid the room yesterday, with another Thibaut paper, similar color and somewhat similar pattern… it went well, the homeowners are pleased – they say they like it more than the original selection.