The Saga of the Dining Room

Dining Room, today

Today is a house post and is heavy on the visuals. It’s one of those this room used to look like this — but now it looks like this deals. I hope eventually, to do this for every room in the house that we’ve altered. I’ve already done the kitchen and the hallway posts, now I just have my office, the bedroom and the back porch to go!

The Dining Room:
When we first moved into the house, the dining room did not look like the above picture. It had a light, floral wallpaper and lacy curtains. Which, I’m sure some people really like. We, however, hated it. One of the main problems, besides the fugly wallpaper, was the fact that ivory, faint wallpaper next to off-white crown moulding provides no contrast. It seriously begs the question, what’s the point? If you have nice moulding and trim around doorways, windows and the ceiling, it’s nice to be able to see it. That way, people can go, “ooohhhh, crown moulding.”

So, without further introduction, here is the chronicle the dining room transformation from this:

Old ding room

To this:

dining room

Wallpaper Stripping is Evil:
The first step, sadly, was stripping the wallpaper. I’m not sure if you’ve done this before but it is a messy, long, tedious and boring experience. In addition, tall ceilings add nothing but more pain to the experience. I will be quite happy if I live the whole rest of my life and never have to strip wallpaper again. After asking several people for advice, we ended up using that spray on stripping gel. You spray it on a section, let it sit, then use this scrubbing tool to strip off the wet, gummy wallpaper. Fun! If you’re really lucky, you will also strip off parts of the wall like I did, as well as drip the stripping gel onto the wood floors.

As I had stripped chunks of plaster off of the walls, next came wall patching paste — dubbed miracle paste by me. Miricle paste became my best friend. I think I rebuilt whole sections of the wall surface with that stuff. Ha! And it is all still standing.

stripping wallpaper

Taping & Painting:
When all of the wallpaper was gone and the wall surfaces were as uniform and smooth as they were going to get, I started the painting prep. Taping is by no means fun but by this point, I felt I was in the home stretch. Since the paint was a dark color, it took a couple of coats even after being primed. I’m sure, if you looked closely at the walls, there are even places now that could use a touch-up. Too bad, I say! One observation though, painting is nice in that it is instant gratification. Especially after all of the stripping and the wall-fixing and the assorted what-not that seemed to take forever. And, the dark red walls look great againt the white trim. Contrast!


I think the whole project probably took three or four weekends but was completely worth it.

Dining room

Thus ends the saga of the comfy, dark red dining room.