The right tools for the job

I learnt many things over the years I spent refurbishing my first flat,  but one of the most important lessons I learnt was that it is really important to have the right tools for the job.   Good quality tools can make all the difference between a job done well, and a job done poorly that probably took twice as long. I have found from experience that it is usually is worth the little bit of extra cost to get a decent paint brush,  roller, or utility knife.

We quickly learnt that the old flat profiled scraper that I had in my toolbox (shown on the left) was not nearly as efficient or sharp as the new bent profile scraper I bought recently (shown on the right). So before starting on phase 2 of the Great Wallpaper Removal Project – I popped down to the hardware store to buy another one so we could each have one.  I wasn’t sure whether the bent profile would make a difference, but it is indeed much better! Every wall in our house (and even some ceilings too!) are wallpapered, so I suspect both scrapers will see their fair share of wall surface.

A few other ‘tips’ I can pass on from our phase 1 include:

  1. Use boiling hot water to mix with the wallpaper stripper as it will remove the base layer more quickly.
  2. Work on two areas at once, sponging the wallpaper stripper on one area and letting it absorb into the paper for 5 minutes or so while peeling off paper in another area.
  3. Work from the top down so water drips onto the wallpaper below, pre-soaking it.
  4. Work from the top down so when you get tired you don’t have to lift your arms and can work on the lower bits.
  5. Use a large sponge so that you get more coverage when wetting down the paper (we bought a larger sponge for phase 2)
  6. Have regular breaks!
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