Posts Tagged ‘patch’

Repairing a Printing Defect

September 5, 2018

This custom-made “Meadow” wallpaper by Peter Fasano was very expensive, so I was disappointed to find a good number of printing defects in the material. I think it is digitally-printed, which is equally perplexing, because that process is much more precise than screen or block printing.

Either way, I encountered blurred ink, streaks, streaks of red running through the black & white print, and voids, like you see here in the top photo. This is one that I didn’t catch when I was hanging the paper (and you get to a point where you can only replace so many strips of paper, or you won’t have enough to do the whole room). The homeowner spotted it a few days later, so I went back to fix it.

Replacing the whole strip was too complicated (for many reasons) and would have used too much of their left over paper, and splicing in a patch would have damaged the wall surface, leaving it open to the possibility of curling edges. So I chose to do a patch. I could have simply cut a patch out of paper that matched the pattern of the flowers in the photo, but that would have placed a somewhat thick patch on top of the exisiting wallpaper. This would have been pretty unnoticeable, but I knew it would look better if the patch were thinner.

So I soaked the scrap of patch paper in water, and then worked carefully to remove the paper backing. Most wallpaper is made of at least two layers – the printed, inked layer, and the paper backing. Once I wet the paper backing, I was able to carefully and slowly peel the paper backing away from the inked top layer. See third photo. This process is a lot more delicate than it sounds.

Then I cut this patch to match the design on the wall, so the patch (now called an appliqué) would be as small as possible. See fourth photo.

Then I pasted the appliqué and applied it over the flawed area. Smoothed into place and wiped free of excess paste, the patch is invisible. See last photo.

Advertisements

Repairing Water Stains from Flooding During Hurricane Harvey

May 2, 2018


This home in Bellaire (Houston) received damage from flooding during Hurricane Harvey in August 2017. Water stains appeared on a small area of the wallpaper just above the baseboard in this powder room. Luckily, the homeowners had saved the paper left over from the original install, so I had material to use for the repair.

Certain substances, like grease, blood, smoke, rust, ink, tobacco, and water stains will bleed through wallpaper (and also paint and other materials, too). To prevent this, the discolorations must be treated with a stain-blocking sealer. Many of these are shellac-based, such as BIN, made by Zinsser, but there are others. I prefer oil-based KILZ Original (2nd photo).

I could have just cut some wallpaper and slapped it on top of the stain. But I wanted to be sure these flood survivors wouldn’t have to look at water stains again. So I used KILZ to cover the stains (3rd photo).

The next week, I came back to do the patch. Using my self-healing craft cutting mat with angles and measurements to trim on, along with a straightedge and razor blade, I cut appliqués to paste on top of the stained paper.

It wasn’t quite as simple as it sounds, because the wallpaper had to be hand-trimmed (use a razor blade to trim off the unprinted selvedge edge). And pasting the paper causes it to absorb moisture and expand, which can throw off the pattern match. So I was dealing with factors relative to what the other guy did and the products he used, compared to my own techniques and products / paste.

It took two tries, but with careful trimming and a little touch-up paint, the job turned out great (last photo).

I also used paint to cover some stains at the top of the baseboard, and also re-pasted some loose areas in other parts of the room (no picture).

A Small Repair Today – Plumbing Issue

March 15, 2018


This couple had water damage from Hurricane Harvey, and I repapered their powder room a month or two ago. Well, recently a pipe burst, and, long story short, they had to replumb the whole house. To run the new pipes, the plumbers had to cut holes in the drywall.

The top photo shows where the plumber patched a hole with a scrap of drywall. He left some irregular areas and rough edges that would show under the wallpaper. So I skim-floated over these areas and then sanded smooth, as you see in the second photo.

There was precious little paper left, so a patch was called for (rather than replacing the whole wall). From leftover paper that matched the pattern around the drywall patch, I cut along the pattern design (third photo). This would be less visible than if I cut a square patch with straight edges.

Once I put the patch into place, lining it up with the pattern on the wall, the repair was invisible. (The gap at the bottom will be caulked.)

Patching a Hole in the Wall

December 11, 2016
Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image


This bathroom had a ceramic toilet paper holder that was recessed into the wall. It was ugly, outdated, and in the wrong place (visible from the hallway), so the homeowners wanted to get rid of it. But that left a hold about 6″ x 4″ that would leave a dent under the new wallpaper.

The homeowner was running errands, so I asked him to pick up a piece of drywall that I could use to patch in the hole. Taping and floating can take a long time to dry, and I wanted to hang paper that day, so I used a different technique.

I cut the piece of drywall about 2″ larger on all sides than the hole. Then I cut off about 2″ of drywall all around the outside edges, leaving a chunk of drywall in the center that was just the size and shape to fit into the hole. I left the top layer of paper on the drywall, which formed a sort of flap all around the center piece. In the second photo, you see me removing some of the drywall, but leaving the inner section, and also leaving the paper flap.

In the third photo, I have inserted the drywall piece into the hole, and the flap is extending 2″ all around the piece. I have floated over the whole thing with joint compound. Next I set a heater and a fan on it, to get it to dry quickly, while other parts of the room were being prepped.

Once dry, I sanded it smooth, refloated to cover minor imperfections, and sanded again, then wiped off dust and primed. The last photo shows the final patch. If you didn’t know where to look, you would never notice it!

Wallpaper Repairs

November 26, 2016
Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image


Some people get upset when there is a fair amount of wallpaper left over after the room is finished. This Clear Lake (Houston) couple felt the same, 15 years ago when I papered their kitchen and powder room. Well, come 2016, and the 40-year-old pipes in their ’70’s era home began to fail. Bottom line – they had to have the whole house completely re-piped. And to do that, the plumbers had to cut holes here and there in the drywall. When the drywall gets messed up, so does the wallpaper. Good thing they had extra wallpaper on hand!

The plumbers did a good job of patching the Sheetrock and then floating over the joints where the new patched-in drywall met the old. But there were still some areas that I needed to refloat and / or sand smooth, and then prime, before the wallpaper could be replaced.

The 2nd and 3rd photos show the soffit or fur down over the kitchen cabinets, first with the plumbers’ patch, and then with my new wallpaper repair.

The powder room had a swirly pattern, and had four walls that needed wallpaper repairs. In this room, as shown in the 5th photo, I appliquéd the new paper over the existing paper. Cutting along the design helps disguise the patch by eliminating visual breaks.

There is even a little paper still left over, in case another calamity strikes and more wallpaper repairs are needed. 🙂

Patch Job Today

January 16, 2016
Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image


This is on the landing on a staircase, which someone fell down after a little too much holiday cheer 😉 , and put a sizeable hole in the wall. The homeowners had a guy come replace the damaged Sheetrock and tape and float. He supposedly used 20-minute mud, which is supposed to dry quickly. But when I showed up the next day, the patch was still very wet, as you can see in the top photo. The grey color means it’s still wet – there are also shadows from the banister in the photo.

For some reason, this patch took a long time to dry – several days. I went back about a month later, and it was ready to go. In the second photo, you can see that the compound he used is not quite smooth. His 20-minute mud is harder to sand than the regular mud I use (it’s really called joint compound). So I skim-floated a very thin layer over the top, dried it quickly with a heat gun, sanded smooth, primed with Gardz, dried that with the heat gun, and then did the wallpaper patch.

It would have been less noticeable to redo the whole strip, from floor to ceiling, but there was not enough left over wallpaper. So I trimmed the top of the paper at a 90* angle / horizontal, and trimmed off the 1/4″ narrow strip of white along one side, then appliquéd the piece over the patched area.

One issue is that wallpaper absorbs moisture from the paste and expands, and my patch expanded less than the original piece. That means that the stripes did not line up perfectly. Lining the tan stripe up on the left with the tan stripe on the paper below caused the stripes to the right to be just a tad off, but it was noticeable. So we decided to line up the center stripes, which meant that the stripes on either side were still off, but the difference was divided between the right and left sides, so it was less noticeable.

The other thing is that, because the patch was appliquéd over the top of the original paper, there is a slight difference in height, and you can see the top edge of the patch (last photo). This will minimize a little as the paper dries and shrinks.

It’s good that the homeowners saved their left over wallpaper, so this unexpected accident could be repaired. Much more economical than replacing all the wallpaper in the entry and hall, upstairs and down.

Sheetrock Patch is Too Wet to Hang On

December 20, 2015
Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

A hole got punched into the Sheetrock, and the contractor put in a new piece of drywall, taped, and then floated with 20-minute joint compound. That was yesterday. Well, I got to work this morning, and the patch is still wet. (White is dry, around the edges, grey is wet, over the new patched in piece.)

Doesn’t make sense, as 20-minute mud is supposed to dry in … 20 minutes; even a deep patch would be dry overnight.

Anyway, I could not repair the wallpaper, because the patch was too wet to sand or seal with primer or hang paper on … too many potential problems.

We will hope it dries sometime soon, and I can go back and make their wall look a little nicer.