Posts Tagged ‘staining’

Mirror “Tar” Will Bleed Through Wallpaper – Prevention

May 17, 2017

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image


Originally, this powder room in a newish townhome in the Rice Military neighborhood of Houston had a mirror that was glued to the wall. Removing it left globs of mastic (tar-like adhesive) stuck to the wall. See Photo 1.

Mastic is petroleum-based, and it, like other similar substances such as grease, oil, and crayon, as well as other compounds like blood, rust, water, tobacco tar, and others, will work their way from behind the wallpaper up through it and then onto the surface, causing an unsightly stain.

KILZ Original oil-based primer and stain blocker is a superb product for sealing these substances. However, I feel more confident if the suspect material is removed entirely.

The best way to do this is to take a Stanley knife (utility knife / box cutter) and cut around the stain and into the wall. Then you can use a stiff 3″ putty knife to peel up the top layer of drywall, taking the staining material with it.

This leaves a patch of Sheetrock without its protective top layer. See Photo 3. These layers of torn Sheetrock will absorb moisture from anything you put on top (paint, primer, joint compound, etc.), and will swell, creating ugly bubbles that will mar the finished job.

So I brushed on Gardz, a penetrating sealer / primer by Zinsser. This is cool stuff, because it soaks into the surface and then dries hard, binding everything together.

In Photo 4, I have skim-floated over the areas where I have cut out the mastic. To skim-float, I trowel on a smoothing material called joint compound. Once that is dry, I will go back and sand it smooth, creating a perfectly smooth surface ready to accept the new wallpaper.

Advertisements

Water Stains on Wallpaper

March 21, 2017

Digital Image

This wallpaper has been up for 10, and possibly as long as 20 years.

It is an uncoated paper wallpaper, probably the type that we call a British pulp. It is in a bathroom, and, over time, water splashing onto the backsplash (or possibly the housekeeper’s cleaning solution) has been wicked up by the paper, and caused the water stains you see here.

A paper with a thin vinyl coating, like most American papers have, might have held up a little better. Also, a thin bead of clear caulk along the top of the backsplash might have prevented water from getting into the cut edge of the paper and discoloring it.

There are good things to be seen here, too. Thin papers like this one (as opposed to paper-backed solid vinyl wallpapers), stay nice and tight to the wall, even in humid rooms like bathrooms, and even when water is splashed on them. Over all the years this wallpaper has been up, all of the seams are perfectly intact. And even though there is staining where water has gotten into the paper, the paper has stayed nice and tight against the wall and the backsplash. A paper-backed solid vinyl would have curled away from the wall, and would have looked much worse, and been impossible to repair.

Another reason to buy paper, and stay away from paper-backed solid vinyl.

Wallpaper Too Old & Brittle to Work With

February 28, 2017
Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image


This kitchen wallpaper was stained by a water leak. There was enough left over paper to replace the damaged section. BUT – the paper had been stored in a hot Houston attic since the ’70’s – that’s 35 years! It was far too brittle and fragile to work with.

I found that lightly wetting the back with a damp sponge allowed it to relax enough that I could unroll it. I tried my usual wallpaper paste, but once the sample piece dried, there were stains caused by the paste. See third photo.

Then I tried powdered wheat paste, which is for more delicate materials. This did not stain the paper, but it did cause it to become too wet, crack, split, tear, and created crevices where staining would be likely to occur. See last photo.

I am glad I tested methods and products before I ripped off the old wallpaper. We ended up leaving the old paper on the wall, and I used craft paint to cover the worst of the stains. See previous post. This turned out to be the best solution.

Another Serene and Pleasing Faux Grass

September 11, 2016
Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image


Originally, the walls were textured and painted a bold gold (top photo). This homeowner was considering grasscloth for their master bathroom. I told her that grasscloth has problems with color variations – called paneling and shading – and that, because the pattern cannot be matched, all the seams would show, and that it stains when splashed with water or toiletries. I was pleased when she took my suggestion to contact my favorite wallpaper source (see below) and chose a faux grass product.

This manufacturer offers several imitation grasscloth options. I’ve hung many of their Bankun Raffia woven version, but this is the first time I’ve hung this more grass-like offering. This design has a pattern match (reeeallly hard to see, but I got it figured out and got ‘er done!), and that used up a little more paper, but it meant that there was no disruption of the pattern at the seams, which made the seams pretty invisible.

The material is embossed with a textured finish, so it looks and feels like real grasscloth. But because the wallcovering is vinyl, it is very water- and stain-resistant, and because it has a scrim (woven fabric) backing, it is very durable, and it will also be (relatively) easy to remove when they are ready to redecorate.

The homeowner loved the finished room. Originally, she had wanted something that was very plain, and I suggested that a very finely woven product would look like, well, like nothing, once it was up on the wall, and she would be just as well off painting the room. So, again, she took my suggestion and selected this, which has a little more texture. Well, in the time between selecting and finally getting the paper up on the wall, she got to worrying that the pattern might be too strong or overwhelming.

Happily, once the wallpaper started going up, it was very clear that the pattern was quite tranquil and serene, with just enough pattern to engage the senses, but still sit calmly in the background.

This wallpaper pattern is by Thibaut Designs, and was bought at a discounted 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.

Looks Like Grasscloth – But It’s Better!

November 22, 2015
Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

Digital Image

When clients start talking about grasscloth, I go into my “lecture” about my disappointment with this product, because of color variations including “shading,” “paneling,” “staining,” “bleeding,” and others, like “cats love to tear it up.” So when I first met with these young homeowners, I was delighted that they listened to me, and took my advice to buy this faux grass product instead.

When properly reverse-hung (hang every other strip upside down), there is no color variation, and the seams are invisible. The material is a heavy vinyl that supports a textured surface (see close-up). The vinyl is water and stain resistant, and if it needs to be cleaned, it can be scrubbed. The material is reinforced with a scrim (woven fabric) backing (see photo) that makes it strong and durable, so no worries about their kids banging toys or tricycles into the walls.

And it looks remarkably like real woven grasscloth. It is a handsome paper, and the overall look is smart and tailored, providing a good backdrop to this mid-century-goes-21st century style home.

I hung this in a typical entry way in a typical ’60’s era ranch-style home, in Shepherd Park Plaza (the neighborhood with all the Christmas lights!) in Houston.   The job took two days, with the first day being spent smoothing the textured walls, so the bumps would not show under the wallpaper.

The pattern is by Thibaut, and is in their Texture Resource Volume 4 collection. It was bought at a discounted price from Dorota Hartwig at Southwestern Paint on Bissonnet near Kirby. (713) 520-6262 or dorotasouthwestern@hotmail.com. Dorota’s eye and knowledge of color and products was a big help to this couple. They were originally leaning toward a different colorway, but Dorota said this was a more neutral color and would work better in their space. Once they saw the wallpaper on the wall, they knew that Dorota had been correct! Discuss your project and make an appointment before heading over to see her.

And notice – the day’s trash all rolled up into one neat package. 🙂