The downstairs hallway project was started back in 2015, when I slowly began removing wallpaper. It was only slow because it was adhered with straight adhesive on unprimed walls. (Not because I like to work slowly.) I spent about 25 hours two weeks ago taking down wallpaper in the unfinished spots. Plus at least 30 previous hours over the last several weeks and years.
I took down bits and pieces in two layers to get the full hall completely bare. This is almost the last bit of wallpaper in the house. (I love the eclectic paper in the kitchen cubby and I’m keeping it.) Now that the paper is down, I can see raw horse hair plaster in some parts and what appears to be original paint in others. Not to mention the original stencil border, which I love.
The next step is putting sheetrock on the ceiling. We did this in a day, but plastering the seams and edges will take Bill a few weeks. He can’t work on it everyday (you know, life), but it also takes several layers and dry time.
In the meantime, I have bond-primed the walls and Bill has applied the first layer of plaster on those. They will need a second coat of plaster, a second coat of sealing primer, and then at least two coats of paint. The same with the ceilings. It’s a long process. I’ll purchase lights soon, probably to match the upstairs hallway.
And this work is only in the downstairs foyer hallway. Upstairs hallway is a whole other process and a whole other post.
Bill had the deep desire to create a coffered ceiling in our home since we moved in. The dining room ceiling has already been patched and replastered twice, and repainted twice. . . which is a lot in less than ten years. We think that the plaster or paint has had trouble sticking for a few reasons. . .primarily old adhesive from either a wallpapered ceiling or odd sorts of old paint. Either way, these ceilings crack and flake like nobody’s business. It’s the one thing in the house that we’ve had to compromise on and go with sheetrock because we just can’t keep doing them every two years. What I mean by compromise is that we had ideally wanted to keep the house pure of modern insulation and sheetrock as much as possible.
So, Bill’s coffering plan has come to fruition and he began planning out and making the coffered look happen this past winter. A project this extensive takes forever, partly because I have no carpentry skills and partly because taking up the whole room with scaffolding and tools omits use of the space, in this case, the largest room in our home. That is hard in the winter when we need a big table for kid projects and play. So, I am dying to have this project finished. Especially because the new lights will be stellar, and the newish curtains will be cozy for the winter.
I’ve just finished priming the coffers and I have a plan for how this will all be painted, but Bill still needs wood around the edges and to finish the nail heads. It willl be a few more weeks/months before completed photos are ready.