Posts Tagged ‘razor blades’

Disguising an Exhaust Fan Cover

November 26, 2018


I don’t like covering switch plates or outlet covers with wallpaper, nor things like air conditioner grills. They get dirty when hands touch them, no adhesive wants to stick to them, they just look better the way God created them. So don’t tell anyone that I did this….

This exhaust fan was oddly stuck smack in the line of sight, in the wall next to the toilet. (Most are mounted inconspicuously in the ceiling.) It just kept bugging me. Since the family was out of town and I had plenty of peace and quiet and time, I decided to give ‘er a go … I plopped down on the floor and spent a good 45 minutes with a handful of new razor blades and cut out all these tiny vent slits.

It looks good.

I hope it holds up. Wallpaper adhesive is not formulated to stick to plastic. But it’s all I had with me. I did use sandpaper to scuff up the surface of the plastic vent cover, and also used a bit of adhesive caulk – one of my secrete weapons – in a few areas that were reachable (couldn’t get down into the recessed areas). So hopefully there will be some chance for the paste to grab ahold.

The end result was worth the effort. Now you barely notice the exhaust fan.

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Glass Bead Wallpaper in a Powder Room

May 21, 2017

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So, O.K., it’s a hard room to photograph. All I can show you is the papered wall behind the beautiful light fixture and the really cool mirror.

This wallpaper is embedded with tiny glass beads, which give it dimension, texture and sparkle. In the 2nd photo, you can see how the beads shimmer when the light hits them.

This wallpaper is by Antonia Vella, for York Wallcoverings. It is a non-woven material and is a paste-the-wall product. It is very thick and stiff, and difficult to manipulate, and very hard to cut through, especially the beads. Used lots of razor blades today.

I hung it in a powder room in the Rice Military neighborhood of Houston. The interior designer is Pamela O’Brien of Pamela Hope designs.

“Iconic” Martinique Banana Leaf Wallpaper

August 20, 2016

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This “Martinique” (French island in the Caribbean), wallpaper pattern is the exact same as was used in the ’40’s in the Beverly Hills Hotel – and on TV shows like Friends and the Golden Girls, and in celebrities’ homes, and on a Mariah Carey album cover, to name a few. I have hung it several times – it is retro, it is timeless, and people love it.

It is also expensive. And thus there are knock-offs. Most of the knock-offs are easier to hang. This one was not.

While most wallpapers these days come pre-trimmed by the factory, this paper came with a selvedge edge, which I had to trim off by hand with a 6′ straight edge and plenty of sharp razor blades. I spent maybe an hour and a half just trimming the edges off six strips of wallpaper. And the trim mark arrows printed by the manufacturer were not distinct, so it was hard to tell exactly where to cut, which means it was easy to get an edge that was not perfectly straight. That means you can get perfectly butted seams, but also what we call “gaps and overlaps.” In addition, the pattern was not perfectly matched by the manufacturer, so there were some slight mis-matches once on the wall. Luckily, the pattern is busy enough that these are pretty disguised.

The paper had a thick vinyl coating that was difficult to cut. The thick manila paper backing sucked up paste, leaving little to hold the paper to the wall. The paper backing opposed the vinyl surface, causing curling at the seams. I added extra paste, I added more moisture, I striped the wall behind seams with paste, but I still had seams that wanted to curl up a little. Usually, once the paper is good and dry, the seams give up their moisture and that causes them to shrink, and then they pull tight to the wall. By the time I left, most of the seams were tight and flat.

In the end, the finished wall looks fantastic, and the homeowner loves it.

I put this bright and bold “Martinique” wallpaper pattern on an accent (headboard) wall in a guest bedroom in a new home in the Montrose neighborhood of Houston.

Ouch!

June 23, 2013

Digital ImageIf you’re gonna hang wallpaper, and work with scissors and razor blades, sometimes these things just happen.

The main issue here is keeping blood off the wallpaper, because it will stain.