Our Downstairs Lounge Makeover - Thanks to Removable Wallpaper
I’ve just finished such a fun little transformation that I am super excited to share with you! Our downstairs lounge that also entails our entryway, got a facelift thanks to removable wallpaper. Yes you heard right - REMOVABLE wallpaper! To be fair I only fairly recently heard about those type of wallpapers too, and when I went to my local paint & wallpaper shop they just looked at me in confusion (ok that might have also something to do with my broken swedish).
Right let’s start from the beginning! After I set my heart on changing the downstairs and under staircase space, in our home, up - I did some research and came accross COLORAY and small business specialising in removable wall paper and murals. I was hooked! Their selection is immense and so I decided to get in touch! Natalia at COLORAY was kind enough to gift me the wallpaper of my choice to spice things up!
Read below which wallpaper I chose and how I got on!
#1 The Theme & Wallpaper
My home is all about that bohemian, colourful and fun interiors. If you follow my Instagram you are probably aware of that. So for our downstairs I wanted to have a mix of all that! And when coming across the Bushes pattern in a lush green tone with rust and blush hues I knew I have to have it.
After giving Natalia at COLORAY all the corresponding measurements to my space, I waited patiently for the goods to arrive. They did infact arrive just a few days before we were going on vacation and with a sick kiddo at home I sure thought that it will have to wait with until March. But thankfully my girl recovered and I had a day spare to tackle this project!
Right! Let’s get started!
#2 Prep The Area & Get Your Tools In Order
What tools should you have?
The tool’s COLORAY suggest you have at hand are a level, pen, sharp cutting knife and a pair of helping hands aka a friend, and of course their instruction manual to get a first idea on how you should apply it. Since I was already down on one - the friend, I hoped to be able to compensate with a big wallpaper brush, measuring stick, credit card (or any type of plastic card) and masking tape.
What tools did I actually use?
The level to make sure to have a first straight line where I can align the wallpaper too (walls aren’t always straight, so good to double check).
The masking tape to give me a guide line
The measuring stick to pre-measure the pieces (always double check that everything is the correct size according to your space)
A pen for eventual marks you need to make on the wall, masking tape or wallpaper
A scissor - to trim the wallpaper pieces if needed
The plastic card - most essential to smooth out the wallpaper and push out air bubbles
The sharp knife to remove access wallpaper on the floorboards and ceiling
As you can see in the image below we had a lot of prints up on the wall but it still lacked some spice, hence the wall paper decision.
To prepare the area, I took all prints down, removed nail & screws, filled the holes with putty and sanded down the residue. Then I gave the area a good wash with a damp cloth and removed any dust from the floorboards and entailing floor - we don’t want dust to stick to our beautiful wall paper right?
#3 Start The Job
The next step is to lay out wallpaper sections on a flat surface ( I used the floor) to check that they all align with each others and the pattern, as well as are in the correct size.
After I measured and checked, where which piece goes, I went on to check how straight my walls really are. I decided to start under the staircase, figuring if something goes wrong with my trial and error approach, it would be here and not an absolute focal point.
After my guide was put up with the help of the level, a pen and masking tape I thought I should start at the bottom, because of the diagonal ceiling. Note that COLORAY’s instruction advice to start at the top ( read on to learn why that is a good idea now I know why). The wall on the left side wasn’t 100% straight so I decided to put up a guideline with masking tape on the right side of the space. With my dedicated space prepared and the wallpaper trimmed in length I set out give it ago.
I however quickly discovered that starting from the bottom was not getting me far as it was difficult to push the wallpaper up. So I readjusted and starting the lining up the wallpaper to the right side. I quickly run into another hurdle! the top of the wall paper was literally covering me, so I then cut the wallpaper along the stairs in the diagonal shape to again, remove access. From here everything went quit smooth! Peel-smooth-push. That was my mantra for a about three hours!
The 2nd and important step was to align the 2nd piece of wallpaper to the first section. As I was also dealing with a larger piece at this point, I directly trimmed the top part and tapped it to the wall to check for alignment and fit. And then I went from there, trying to align from left to right as good and careful as possible - again while trying to keep a slight tension to the wall paper without stretching it (yapp that is something I did learn while working as a visual merchandiser)
One thing that was a first for me was to actually removing the electricity outlet covers to get the wallpaper smooth in all placed. Since I am dead scare of electrocuting myself, I turned the whole house off before removing them. That apparently isn’t necessary, but I don’t like taking chances with a deadly force (once again I wish I could insert an Emoji here).
Right so after the cover was off, I simply smooth the wallpaper over it like at any other part, and then carefully cut around it to expose the actual outlet. Again, for the cutting around part, I turned off the electricity in the house. Thankfully we had some daylight.
After that I simply put the cover back on, tightened the screws and was super happy with the result. I may even start taking them off now, when painting - much better than taping them up.
Moving on, the above-the door-space and the right part of the wall was a lot easier, since I was working with smaller section for the top-of-the-door, and didn’t have to align the wallpaper to a pattern on the right side of the room. You can see in the picture below that I only had to do some cut-out’s for the wall for the beam running across the ceiling, but that only needed some measuring and cutting.
Overall I thought, win win with starting the more difficult section first!
The hardest part of the whole process and doing it alone, was peeling off the backing, whilst holding the wallpaper straight so it wouldn’t stick to itself or other parts of the wall. But overall totally do-able if you bring some patience to the equation and don’t get easily flustered.
Et voila! Our downstairs lounge after the transformation! I do think it looks quite stunning indeed!
#4 My Review On Removable Wallpaper from COLORAY
So what is my take on it? Well I thought it all went fairly smooth and only took 4hours ish, including prep & tidying up after. The wallpaper itself was easy to work with, if some alignment was off, there was no issue peeling it off carefully and reapplying. Would it have been easier if my husband would have helped? Probably, but we are also both very head strong and it easily could have resulted in a divorce - because both of us are always right - naturally (again, insert winking Emoji here).
So would I recommend this for anyone interested in wallpaper, an intermediate solution or something to transform a rental? Absolutely!
I already had some questions about how easy it is too remove it and if it advisable for rental homes. I have no personal experience of this yet, have however found that when I just had to readjust a part it did come off easily.
But I did come across this article on Apartment Theraphy on What You Need To Know About Removing Temporary Wallpaper, Before You Hang It - for anyone interested. Plus I would always recommend the seller of you wallpaper to double check and get personal experiences.
Again, I want to thank COLORAY for their support and contribution of this beautiful wallpaper.
If you are interested in any of their products from their wide range, you can find all the links below this article. They are conveniently sorted into the categories Vintage, Floral, Patterns & Kids. The wallpaper I for example used, was found under Floral.