Anyway, before we painted, our dining room had wallpaper. Actually, it still does. But now it just has paint over it! :) The wallpaper was there before I moved in and it is just not me. See below.
I find the stripes overbearing for our small dining room. So, let me tell you 3 reasons why I chose to paint over the wallpaper instead of taking the wallpaper down.
1) Condition of walls. The reason the wallpaper was hung in the first place was because the walls are not in great condition. I was concerned that after taking the wallpaper down I would probably have to skim coat and sand the walls to ensure an even and smooth surface. This would be a pain.
2) Removing wallpaper is not always an easy task. Sometimes the paper comes down in sheets and sometimes it doesn't. And since I am pregnant and have no experience with this I decided not to go there.
3) Time and Money. I wanted to get this done before the baby comes and since we're moving in the near future, I didn't want to waste too much time or money removing the wallpaper, sanding walls, etc.
You get the picture. So, how do you paint over wallpaper? Well, here is a good tutorial that I followed, but I will give you a quick run down of how I went about it.
1) Identify all the visible edges, as well as any loose/peeling wallpaper. With a razor, carefully trim back any loose pieces. See the seams below.
2) Next, put just a little joint compound (the mud used at joints in drywall) on any uneven spots - so this means all seams, edges, and places where loose wallpaper was removed. This is the most important part, since you want the surface to be as smooth as possible before painting.
I had our painter do this and the key to having a seamless look is to ensure that the compound is "feathered" out properly (so the seam disappears). If it is visible or bumpy, you'll need to sand it more. Use 150 grit sandpaper or finer.
3) Once the compound is dry and sanded, you will need to prime over the wallpaper. You need to use an oil based primer. This is critical because the glue holding the wallpaper onto the wall is activated by water. Putting latex (water based) paint on will just cause the wallpaper to fall off the wall, which is what we're trying to avoid. Also, the primer is also the first step to hiding the wallpaper pattern, so it doesn't show through the top coat. Oil based paint stinks ... so ventilate the area well.
4) Now, you are ready to paint your walls. The painter used two coats of latex paint (eggshell finish) and voila!
So that's it ... I love the new color (BM White Down). It's just so much more airy and open.