Saturday, September 08, 2012

No mess wall coverings

What happens when you live in an apartment, or are renting a house and you have WHITE walls and are NOT allowed to paint the walls?
You get creative, that's what.

You can not paint the walls in our military house. 
So of course I had to get creative. 
I was at the store one day and I was admiring all the pretty scrapbook paper and wondering how in the world I was going to use all of those loverly, make my heart pitter patter, pages. 

It was then that it hit me. 
I could use these to decorate Aowyn's room.

Sorry I don't have any before pictures of her room, but trust me when I tell you it was TOO MUCH WHITE!

I decided that I would cover one of her walls (her window wall to be exact) with scrapbook paper.
I pitched the idea to my handsome hubby and he thought it was a great idea.
So the process began.

I started by measuring all the walls.
I had a paper showing you my super technical  chicken scratched plans, but I now can't find it, so you will just have to imagine with me.

I took the dimensions from the floor to the ceiling on each side of the window (if you don't have a window or a door on your wall you will only have to measure it once.)
Then I took the dimensions from the floor to the bottom of the window, and the ceiling to the top of the window.
I then took the measurements from one wall to the other for above the window and below the window. 
Then I took the measurements of the wall to the window on each side of the window.

You will use these measurements to figure out how many pages you will need to buy total.
You will then take you measurements and divide them all by 12 (or whatever size your paper is. Mine was 12x12 so I just divided by 12).
So if your numbers are 36", 120", 40" and 160" then you would have 3, 10, 3 1/3,  13 1/3. ( your numbers will be much larger then this usually, I am just using them as an example.)

Then you take your length and width numbers and times them by each other.
So say 36" (3) is from the wall to window and 120" (10) is from the floor to ceiling, you will times those by each other: 3x10= 30. 
So for that area of the wall you will need 30 pages.
You keep doing this with every area till you have your total number of pages.
If you have partial pages in multiple sections you may be able to cut them and use some of them in other areas. I used one paper for the partial section above the window and the partial section below the window.

I needed 76 pages for my wall and so I waited till they were on sale at Micheals and Hobby Lobby. The usually go on sale at each place once a month.
I got each page at Micheals for .23$ and at Hobby Lobby for .25$. 
For a total of around $20 for the whole wall. 

I took the pages and I stapled them onto the wall.
I chose not to use the corn starch method because I want to use the pages again if/when we move.
You cannot even see the staples unless you get really close to the wall, and even then sometimes you still can't see them. 

When I got to corners, walls, windows and outlets I simply just stapled the paper to the wall and cute around the area that needed removed with an razor blade.
I did take off the outlet covers and cut the paper around the inside of the cover so that the cover could hold down the paper and I would not need to staple that area.

It took about 45 minutes to staple them all on the wall.
It was harder to staple around the window because of the frame itself. 
It was too solid of an area to staple into so I just stapled a little farther away from the edge in that area.

It is important that you make sure the pieces are all butted up against each other on all the corners and edges so that you don't have any gaps or unaligned areas when you are nearing the end of the project.

Then of course you can take a break and admire your beautiful darling angle who has been keeping you company.
You can also realize when looking back on the pictures that you did a really bad job cleaning said child up after her lunch.

From this point all the leg work is done and you can start hanging picture or curtains or whatever you want.
This is the finish product of our scrapbook wall.

You can hang whatever you want on the wall and just nail right into the wall like you would with paint or wall paper.

You can also screw your curtain rods right into it as well.
(see that gap between the two pages? This is what I am talking about when I say MAKE SURE YOU ARE BUTTING ALL OF THEM UP AGAINST EACH OTHER (I'm yelling at myself here because I was not so diligent in this task.). I worked my way from one corner of the window around to the other and back and this is where the two sections met up. Apparently somewhere along the way something got misaligned and in the end I have a gap. Luckily you can only see it up close. But if you are OCD like me and this will bug you, learn from my mistakes.)

I really loved how it all turned out and how fun it is to see the room.
We had a maintenance guy come over to fix the breaker in this room and he raved about the wall.
He even told me he was going to go home and tell his wife about it and asked me if it was okay if she came over to look at it. I told him of course and he asked if I did this kind of work for other people. 
So I think I can safely say it was a success. 

Do you have a wall you can't paint that is bugging you and begging you for some life?
You should try this, it is so simple, inexpensive and a lot of fun.


~SHERI said...

I really, really like it! Nicely done!

Kirsten said...

Super cute!! I never thought of putting paper on the wall. It turned out awesome!!

Emily said...


Laura said...

It looks like a huge, beautiful, wall-hanging handmade gorgeous quilt! WONDERFUL idea! Do you think this would work as a border (ie use one row of 12x12 pages around the top edge of a room)? Maybe using all the same patterned pages?

Joy in Mommyhood said...

Im sure it would look great as a border. I have actually debating on doing a border in my kitchen with this method. If you do it you will have to let me know how it turns out.