Monday, April 10, 2006

Born Blue

The painting of the cupboards was the part I was dreading. Removing the hardware, cleaning, sanding--all of the prep work was going to take a lot of work, not to mention the actual painting. The walls? That was supposed to be the easy part. I was just gonna rip off that peeling wallpaper, clean off the glue and be good to go.

Except that underneath that peeling wallpaper was another layer of peeling wallpaper. And underneath that second layer of peeling wallpaper was a third layer of wallpaper that was not peeling at all. In fact, that third layer, with its vertical stripes of fat yellow and orange flowers (which, actually, complemented the exposed insulation in the sunroom rather nicely), appeared determined to stay exactly where it was. And given that it had probably been exactly where it was since 1964, I knew I was in for a battle that would make the wallpaper nightmare I once defeated in the bathroom look like a pedicure at Spalon Montage.

One day and two bottles of Dif Stripping Gel Spray later, I was miserable and aching and still had two and a half walls to go. That’s when I happened to notice the fine print on the back of the Dif spray bottle, under the words “Safe! Fresh Scent!” where it said, “This product contains chemicals that the State of California has determined to cause cancer.”

Clearly I needed a new tactic, but the thought of making a trip to the hardware store to try and rent a steamer only enhanced my misery.

My Ho happened to call just then. He asked, “Can I bring you anything?” Because he is good like that. I knew he was talking about lunch or maybe even an Icee, but in a self-pity drenched moment of snark I answered, “Yeah, you can bring me a steamer. Do you happen to have one of those handy?” There was a brief pause, and then My Ho, who is now my hero, spoke these fateful words:

“I have one of those little Scunci steamers. Would that work?”

I nearly wept with joy.

I (Heart) You

Through the course of the day yesterday, I discovered traces of two more wallpaper layers. For those of you who are not so good with the numbers, that’s a total of FIVE.

Relieved of their unsightly burden, the walls in my kitchen have now been stripped all the way down to the paint they were born in. Way back in 1940, it came into the world a shade of pale, pre-war baby blue.

It's very sweet, really.


Melissa said...

Five different wall papers. That is so wrong. I thought the two we had to tear off were bad. Were some of yours a hideous yellow or with little red apples everywhere?

Alyson said...

I think I may have stopped at the yellow stripe and said that will just have to do. But then I'm a quitter. Good luck with the reno. I'm looking forward to reading more.

BTW I have added you as my mystery blog of the week. Hope you don't mind.

EverydaySuperGoddess said...

Melissa--No apples, only three versions of big orange and yellow flowers, one pattern of tiny red/blue/yellow flowers, and an off-white herringbone textured thing on top of the whole mess. Nice.

Alyson--Of course I don't mind!

Molly said...

You should take before and after pictures.

Angelica said...

I bow down to you! If I would have found that mess on my walls I would have rather just gone out and stared at the sun.

How horrendous was it REALLY?

Suck it up and live with it, or gouge your eyes out and call it a day?

Good Luck!!!