Posts Tagged ‘shower’

Ogee Pattern

October 3, 2017

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Here is a classic ogee design. That means that the pattern has a continuous mirror image double “S” curve.

It’s a popular theme in interior décor, and I like the way it fills the wall space in this bathroom. (The shot is above the shower tile.)

The interior designer on this project is Pamela O’Brien of Pamela Hope Designs.

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Mildew Found Behind Wallpaper

September 20, 2017

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I removed a strip of paper-backed solid vinyl wallpaper from the wall over a shower in a room used by two teenagers.  The type of paper (one of my least favorites), the humidity from the hot and heavy shower usage, the  lack of primer used by the previous installer, and an exterior wall that most likely had some moisture problems, all added up to a recipe for mildew.

I used bleach and then another mold / mildew product to kill and remove the mildew, then went over it with an oil-based stain-blocking sealer called KILZ.

Over the KILZ, I added a coat of wallpaper primer.  The two primers that I use most are the large cans in the last photo, and they each are used for different circumstances.

 

Better Dead Than On My Leg

May 16, 2017

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So today I was hanging paper on the wall above the shower. I looked down to see a wasp clinging to the white tile directly below me. No biggie, I thought… When I get down off the ladder I’ll see if the homeowner has a flyswatter.

I was still maneuvering the wallpaper when I noticed that the wasp had flown away, and landed on an opposite wall. Fine. No problem. He will eventually find his way outside.

I was just about to finish up with that strip of wallpaper, when I felt something on my leg. I figured it was a thin piece of wallpaper that had been trimmed off and fallen from where I was working, somehow landed on my leg and stuck. But it kept moving.

I looked down – and danged if that dad-burned wasp wasn’t on my leg, squirming all around!

This was too much! I didn’t want to mess up any of my tools or cloths, and I didn’t want to agitate the volatile guy – but I had to do something. So I swatted at him and got him off my leg, and while he was disoriented, I used my ruler to, well, let’s just say you could hear the crunching of a tiny exoskeleton …

His stinger came out, but by that time he was on the cold hard tile floor of the shower, impotent. My leg was miles away.

Grasscloth Wallpaper in a TV Room / Sunroom

April 22, 2017

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I hung a woven grasscloth in this TV room / sunroom in an older home in the Rice Village area of Houston when the homeowners first bought the house – back in 1992 ! The wallpaper was still in great condition – except for where shower pan in the upstairs bathroom had leaked, causing damage to the wallpaper below. The paper had suffered fading from the abundant sunlight in the room, too. Time for a change.

The homeowners considered other types of paper and patterns, but came back to the natural, earthy, textured look of grasscloth. Their new choice is more relaxed than the previous woven one, and has more color – although it’s all in the neutral / brown / tan scope.

I was pleased that there was minimal shading / paneling (color variations between strips) (see 3rd photo). The material has a lovely texture (last photo), and was reasonably easy to trim and position.

There was no brand name on the product label, but it was bought at below retail price from Dorota Hartwig at Southwestern Paint on Bissonnet near Kirby. (713) 520-6262 or dorotasouthwestern@hotmail.com. She is great at helping you find just the perfect paper! Discuss your project and make an appointment before heading over to see her.

Viney Floral in a Master Bathroom

June 9, 2016
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On the more traditional side, this flower-and-branch pattern worked beautifully in a master bathroom in an early 20th century home in the Montrose neighborhood of Houston. The bathroom had been redone, including new slate-grey tile around the shower; the wallpaper coordinated beautifully with the tile.

The homeowner loved it. He kept saying that it was the best decorating dollars he had ever spent, and that he would have to spend the night in the bathroom, because he wanted to be able to see it every time he woke up.

The pattern has an interesting shadowed effect – it looks as if light is coming in through windows and casting shadows on the wallpaper. This is a good example of why you should always look at room-set photos on-line and in the selection books, so you can see how the pattern plays out on a large scale. If all you saw was a 10″ sample, you would not realize that the overall pattern included this shadowy look.

This wallpaper is by York, and is in their SureStrip line. I really love these ShurStrip papers. They are the newer non-woven materials, but are thin and easy to work with (as opposed to some that are thick, stiff, spongy, and … er… icky), and will hug the wall and stay in place without peeling or curling for years to come. They are also designed to strip off the wall (relatively) easily, when you are ready to redecorate.

Paper-Backed Vinyl Is Not Good In A Bath

April 24, 2016
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Oh, boy. I sure don’t like vinyl papers that are bonded to a paper backing. Here is a very visual reason why – Under humid conditions, they delaminate (surfaces separate) and curl.

This particular type of paper is about my absolute most detested, because of it’s propensity to curl. The material is typical of what was hung back in the ’70’s. Other issues factor in, like the type of primer used (or not used 😦 ), the paste used, type of paper backing, type of vinyl surface, age of home, ventilation in the room, and just how much steam is generated when the shower is used.

To be fair, this wallpaper had been up and looked good for a long, long time (possibly back to those ’70’s!). So maybe Father Time is just taking its toll.

And maybe Father Time has an ulterior motive … I mean, look at that paper! Isn’t it about time for a little update?!!

Going Straight – By Faking It

August 28, 2015
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Here I am hanging a small geometric pattern in a bathroom in a home in River Oaks (Houston). The home was built in 1940, and there has been a lot of movement since. Read: The walls, the ceiling, the door and window frames – none of these are plumb or level. And I mean, some of the areas were out of plumb by as much as 1 1/2″ from ceiling to floor. Read: With a floral paper, you might not notice if things don’t line up perfectly. But with a geometric pattern, you will definitely see it if the horizontal elements in the wallpaper are not parallel to the horizontal lines in the ceiling and moldings. What to do?

I’m less concerned about hanging true-to-plumb, and am more concerned with keeping the motifs evenly lined up at prominent areas, such as the ceiling and at door and window moldings. In the top photo, I have just hung the short strips over the shower (to the right in the photo), and am working my way to the left. The crown molding is level; the paper I just put up is not. If I hung my next strip to comply with the un-plumb pieces I just placed over the shower, they would be off-kilter with the crown molding. Meaning, you would have 3/4″ of navy blue at the top of the wall on the right, tapering to 1/4″ of navy blue when you get to the left end.

So, I faked it. I was lucky, because this pattern was the same right side up as it was upside down, and also sideways. This gave me the option of “railroading” the paper – running it horizontally, instead of vertically. The layout of the room also afforded me many opportunities to tweak the paper and the pattern.

Where the wallpaper ends to the left of the shower tile, and to the right of the curved crown molding, instead of bringing a full-length (8′) drop down to the floor, I stopped the paper near the top of the shower tile, cutting along the honeycomb pattern. My next piece was run horizontally, from the shower tile left past the window, and ended at a cabinet on the left. To disguise the unconventional seam, I cut along the honeycomb design of my new strip of paper, and overlapped it onto the existing paper (and used special adhesive designed to stick to the vinyl paper).

It might be off a tiny bit at the point of overlap, but it’s such a narrow strip that you will never notice. What’s important is that the pattern is nice and straight as it runs along the crown molding. It is a little off along the top of the window molding – but that is because the crown molding and the window molding are not parallel. In fact, they form a trapezoid. You can’t fight a trapezoid! (As you may have learned in high school geometry. 🙂 ) You can align the pattern with one, but not both; I chose to align it with the crown molding at the top of the wall.

O.K., that took care of the strip of paper above the window. I still needed to put paper down both sides of the window. And remember – the window molding was neither parallel with nor perpendicular to the crown molding. And let’s not forget the shower tile – nothing was aligned with that, either.

But those honeycombs had to look like they were parallel with something , or they would look like they had been chopped off irregularly as they made their way down the wall.

So, once again, I trimmed the design along the honeycomb pattern, and left the jagged edge (see photo). Then I cut a new strip of paper to fit between the window and the shower tile, pre-trimming it on my table to have a balanced edge where it met the shower tile, and overlapped it at the top where it joined the strip that ran over the window. (see photo)

Underneath the window, I had pretty much the same issues to deal with, but less flexibility in the paper. Still, it worked out wonderfully.

The final – and least cooperative – space was the narrow strip between the left side of the window and the cabinet to its left. Again, I pre-trimmed the edge of the paper to align with the design on the paper above the window, and cut along the honeycomb motif to disguise the overlap. It looks perfect, as you can see.

However, because this paper along the left side of the window was tweaked, and so was the paper along the right side, as well as the paper under the window, by the time it came to match up all these strips of paper, the pattern design didn’t line up. No biggie. We’re talking a 1 1/2″ wide strip between a raised window molding and a cabinet, and it’s not like anyone is going to be examining the pattern match on the wallpaper in that spot – more likely, she’ll be digging inside that cabinet, completely absorbed in her hunt for a new roll of toilet paper.

Still, I couldn’t help myself – I spent a little time creating the illusion of teeny lines and gaps in three strategic places, to disguise the miniscule mismatch, and fool the eye.