Monday, October 11, 2010

"Wallpaper is from the devil"...and other things you should know.

I'm redecorating my bathroom.  I bought the towels and accessories in June, but because of what I wrote about in yesterday's post, those items have been sitting in a Kohl's bag next to my bed for 4 1/2 months. But now I'm really going to do it!

What you must know is that bathroom makeovers are in my blood.  When I was growing up, my mom redecorated the bathroom at least every other year. It's like a joke with our childhood friends.  Everyone knows that there are like 17 coats of paint on the walls of the bathroom in my parent's house.  Friends asked to use the bathroom just to see what the new theme was for the year.  We've seen every "cool at the moment" painting technique on those walls....white washing, sponging, ragging, and I believe the current technique in there involves speckling with a feather duster.  You name it....Mom's tried it.  Why the bathroom, you ask?
1. It's inexpensive.  New towels, rugs, a can of paint, and bingo.....instant face lift for the house.
2. It's fast. 
3. It doesn't tear up the house for weeks or months like other remodeling projects.
4. It can be accomplished while Dad is working out of town.

I haven't updated my own bathroom in 7 years.  When I first moved into the house, we went with a woodsy theme in the bathroom and I found these little wallpaper decals of bears, moose, and pine trees. "Oh, these are darling!" I said.  "These will look perfect in the bathroom." 

I was flat out of my mind.

I knew that wallpaper was inherently bad.  I was determined not to make the decorating mistakes of my mother's generation.....but what could 27 little woodsy decals possibly do?

It's not like I was buying rolls of powder blue textured wallpaper with a floral pattern that must be matched perfectly.  These were just wallpaper stickers.

I bought them....and broke a major rule of home decorating.

Flash forward 7 years.

My son is now nine, and a wildlife smartypants.  He has often pointed out the fact that we do not have moose where we live, we have elk.  We do not have grizzly bears in our state, we have black bears, and I'm certain that the pine tree stickers I've had on the wall are not native to our area either.  I have only one thing to say to him. "Listen mister, I'm your mother and I can still bend you over my knee!"  Leave my stickers alone.

About the same time that he was old enough to identify the wildlife in the bathroom, he also decided that it would be fun to see if he could do chin-ups using the towel bar as a jungle gym.  After he bent it and pulled it out of the dry wall, he realized that the idea was impulsive and probably not a good choice.  I've suffered with the after effects of this monkey business for years now.  My towel bar was barely hanging on by a thread.

Its high time all of it was demolished.  Out with the old, and in with the new!

The problem is those !#$%+^&;* stickers.  It took me hours to remove all 27 of them.  I think they were fused on to my wall with the same stuff used to keep the space shuttle together.  I peeled little tiny bits of paper until my finger nubs were numb and practically bloody.  All the while I was kicking myself for ever buying them and wondering how I managed to cave into peer pressure 7 years ago.  Every little branch, hoof, and bear's ear had to be taken off millimeter by millimeter, and then thoroughly coated in a solution of fabric softener and hot water to get the rest of the paper and glue off.  It was a nightmare.  It was like trying to milk a cat.

Here's what I know now.

The next time I sit on the couch with my girls to have a mother daughter chat about serious stuff like the dangers of drugs and alcohol....I'm going to carefully bring this into the conversation.  It's going to go something like this:

" One day you girls will have houses of your own, and you will walk into Home Depot and see little wallpaper borders, and decals, and I just want you to know that wallpaper is from the devil.  Do not fall into the temptation of buying it, because you will suffer the consequences of your poor choice for years to come.  Even if you just buy a little.  Learn from my mistakes, and don't do the same decorating things that Mommy has done in the past.  It will haunt you.  Stick with paint.  It's much safer."

My new theme....cowboy with a John Wayne twist!  It's going to be brilliant! And it's also never going to be finished if I keep typing.

Goodbye for now.


P.S.  "Friends don't let friends buy wallpaper."


  1. Oh Nell you are ah hoot! I hope ya don't mind my following you. I have wallpaper boarder still in the package in my cupboard. I wonder now who I could give it too(?)

  2. ha ha ha Oh poor you!! I hate wallpaper!! I promise I will never put wallpaper in my new home! xo

  3. Can't wait to see the "new" bathroom. I can now say I have NO wallpaper of any sort in my house, the last border went with the kitchen remodel...Dad actually took it off for me. :) Oh yes, I still love my speckles in the bathroom...they are sooooo fun. MOM