When Carlos and I finished redoing our bedroom, it instantly became our most favorite room in the house. Every time we would walk in we would feel as though we were staying somewhere else, it was like a tiny vacation spot every night. Of course for me, it didn’t take long before I became anxious to get started on the living room and dining room. I couldn’t even sit in the living room without thinking about all the things I wanted to change. So in the beginning of July we finally decided to start taking down wall paper. We used the same process for this project as we did our bedroom. Honestly I feel that the steamer is just the best way to go, but of course that’s my personal opinion.
We quickly realized that the living room and dining room were going to be a much bigger project than we had expected. Taking down the wallpaper was a breeze, but then we needed to tackle the popcorn ceilings in the living room. Carlos had previously scraped the popcorn ceiling in the dining room years before and insisted that it was not something he ever wanted to have to go through again. That being said, we put up drywall with the intention of creating a smooth ceiling. If I could go back in time, I would have scraped the ceilings myself! Drywall is very heavy to begin with and putting up about 8 sheets of it was not an experience I will ever wish to have again.
The heaviness is not even the worst of it! We had to tape the edges and the seams where the sheets connected and then joint compound and sand them down to make the smooth appearance. I am not exaggerating in the slightest when I say it probably took us a month alone just to “smooth” out the ceiling. No matter how many times we sanded , joint compounded, sanded, joint compounded and sanded, you could still see where the seams had been connected with the tape. It was miserable! We had to come up with an alternative to what we had originally wanted. Carlos had read up about a textured paint that has sand in it. This paint would allow us to add a slight texture to the ceiling and essentially get rid of the lines you could see.
We purchased a small bucket of Homax Roll-On Texture white paint. We were able to roll it on using the paint rollers we had purchased and it worked like a charm. It was very easy to use and allows you to control the amount of texture you want with the roller. The spots where the seams were an issue are more textured than the rest of the ceiling. It came out great and unless you’ve read this blog or we’ve personally told you about it, you would have no idea it had been an issue. We painted over the textured paint with a basic white paint we had used in the bedroom and finally the ceiling was finished!
After the ceiling fiasco we still needed to paint the walls. At this point I was outwardly expressing quite frequently that I just wanted to see paint on the walls by the end of the week. haha It can be quite frustrating when you see the finished project in your head everyday and yet you just don’t seem to be getting anywhere close to that. It took us every bit of 3 months to decide on a living room color but it turned out to be worth the long search. We chose a color by BEHR called “Mountain Falls” and it is every bit of perfect. Our dining room color was chosen in less than 48 hours! :) I already had a color in my head, closely described in my own words as dirty white, and Carlos was able to pick one out that fit just right called “Toasted Gray” by BEHR.
Seeing the paint on the walls began to spark a lot of excitement again and we felt like we were finally to the finish line. All we had left to do was tear up our carpets and we would be sipping wine by the pellet stove within days. Then, we began to tear up the carpet. First to go was the 60 year old ugly, old, stained, smelly, shaggy orange carpet that I had despised over the past year. The smells alone that came out of moving that carpet would be enough to put you off your dinner for a few days. Underneath that was an ugly, thin, almost completely untouched green carpet that had obviously been laid down when the house was built. “This is it!”, we started getting so pumped, the moment of truth was upon us. We began the attempt to pull up the carpet which quickly turned out to be nearly impossible. We were literally using all our strength to rip this carpet up from the backing that was clearly cemented to the floor. And there it was, underneath the carpet was a rubber-like backing that seriously had no intention of coming up. Our hearts completely sank and we realized we had just opened up a whole new can of worms.