One of the first decorating decisions I made when I moved to the ranch nine years ago was to do something fun
with the half walls that separated the living room/office and the kitchen/dining room.
I wanted something western, which in my mind meant leather and nailheads.
Here's a close-up of the office wall treatment. I loved it then, I love it now. But I'm so over brown.
I used red, non-tooled faux leather for the dining room wall, which I'd been loving
up until I re-painted that room a pale green. The red had to go.
Since I'd be getting rid of the red, it seemed only logical to re-do the brown at the same time.
What follows is a sort-of how-to lesson on the process, in case you're inclined to try something similar.
Ripping out the old stuff was shockingly easy.
The nailheads, which I'd spent days pounding in, took but a few minutes to pull out.
And the fabric peeled right off as well...
...taking just a little plaster stuff with it, which was a good thing. I finally saw why it was so hard
to pound in all those nails – I was pounding through a metal edging strip.
Smooch: Shut up and show them the new coverings. That's what they came to see.
No more dark brown in the living room/office and a sage green for the kitchen/dining room.
I ordered the material online from Worth Fabrics, after a very nice lady sent me a bunch of swatches.
It was about $14 a yard, which seems like a bargain for how nice it is.
Measuring and cutting these large pieces of material was best done on the largest surface available,
which in my case was the dining room floor.
It was when I was crawling around the concrete on my knees that I heard a whisper.
Whisper: Knee pads.
Me: Yeah, I sure wish I had some knee pads.
Whisper: Knee pads.
Me: I heard you the first time.
Then I thought about it...did I bring home knee pads when I cleaned out my dad's garage?
I did! Even better, I was able to find them in my messy garage!
I could have crawled around all day after that.
Anyway, with all the materials cut, it was time to spray them with adhesive.
The Ranger saved the day again.
This is the stuff I used. The vapors are kind of strong, otherwise I might have sprayed the wall instead.
It's very forgiving, in that you can peel and re-stick multiple times until everything's in the right place.
I lightly stuck the fabric to the wall, then went back to the right side and worked my way west.
The important thing here is not to panic. If the fabric gets all crooked, you can peel it off and start over.
I'm guessing this job would be even easier with two people – one to hold the unstuck portion
and the other to do the sticking – but then there would be disagreements and bickering
and who needs that?
I smoothed and pressed out the air toward the top and bottom, then smoothed some more.
The closer I got to the end, the easier it got because there was less to peel off and re-stick.
I rounded the corner, then used a utility knife to trim around the final edge.
The knife also came in handy to cut around the outlet that I had covered.
Smooch: I like it. Not so Christmasy anymore.
Tomorrow, we'll talk trim.