We have recently bought a house and the first room we’re decorating is my toddler’s bedroom, because:
- He has been through 3 house moves in 2 years, and has always been such a trooper through the changes. For the past year he has expressed a desire to personalise his room. Living in short term rentals made it difficult to do much and the poor kid was stuck with a boring beige and brown room in the last rental. So I promised him that as soon as we bought a house, we’d make his room all nice.
- His room was a DIY mess. The previous owners used it as a dressing room and they left us with rather questionable “handiwork”.
This is how his room looked before:
When we viewed this house, I loved the huge window which flooded the room in natural light, so I wanted to have fun with a dark colour in here.
Before we could get to the satisfying job of painting, we needed to:
- Remove the silly little shelf embedded in the wall and fix that bit of the wall (plasterboard + skim and fit a matching skirting board)
- Remove the picture rail
- Remove the built in wardrobe thingy in the alcove
- Remove the strip light and mirror on chimney breast
- Add sockets (the room only had 2!) and move the ceiling light wiring to the middle of the room (I’ve seen several houses with ceiling lights near the window – what is the purpose of this? Does anyone know?)
- Get rid of the venetian blind
- Strip the wallpaper
- Hang lining paper
Stripping the wallpaper revealed a very interesting colour scheme that existed in this room once upon a time, maybe in the 90s. Can you imagine a room painted purple, lime green and teal? I kid you not…
At this point, my little boy peeked into his room and looked aghast, as if we had betrayed him. “But it looks SO DIRTY!” he said. I tried to explain that to make an omelette, you have to crack some eggs. Then he said he wanted an omelette for dinner so we closed the door to this room for the evening and went to cook.
The next day, the lining paper went up and the room no longer looked dirty.
DECORATING TIP: If your walls have some bumps after stripping wallpaper, thick lining paper can do a great job of smoothing them out. It’ll save you the cost and hassle of replastering. To ensure there are no visible joins in the lining paper, hang it horizontally with about 3mm gap between the rows. Then fill this gap with a flexible filler and sand it smooth when dry. Seal the filler with a slightly thinned coat of a good primer (I prefer Zinsser BIN) and when that’s dry, you’re ready to paint!
If you’ve got through this far with the post, I thank you! I just wanted to highlight what a lot of work was needed in this room, and with fun-sized people around, it’s quite a challenge to get things done. Anyway, here’s your reward for sticking it out: a peek of the first coat of paint going up!
Isn’t it beautiful? Little Greene Deep Space Blue is now my favourite deep, rich navy blue.