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Save me from myself - tempted to paint over vinyl wallpaper backing

Discussion in 'Decorating and Painting' started by Min, 14 Apr 2019 at 11:16 PM.

  1. Min

    Min

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    Hi folks

    Have struggled all day with this. Please save me from myself - don't be too harsh!

    I've stripped the top vinyl layer off the wallpaper in my loo. The wallpaper is at least 20 years old and I'm left with the robust 'backing' paper which is very well stuck to the wall and I am sooooo tempted to paint over it.

    It is not without some issues though.

    Most strips are neatly abutted but some (in a couple of the corners) are poorly overlapped - one even has a wavy edge.

    The paper reaches the window recess but does not go into it. It's poorly adhered and unevenly cut. Surely I'm never going to get a good finish on the corner.

    In some places there are slightly darker patches, as if there is mould underneath the wall paper.

    Much of the paper is fluffy so something would have to done to create a smooth finish.

    What is making me want to paint it are that the backing paper looks a bit like lining paper (which is fooling my brain). And all the walls in this 1950's house have had distemper under the paper which is a big job either to wash off completely, or wash off the loose stuff then paint with alkali resistant paint.
    Usually, when I strip wall paper, because of the distemper, the wall paper has hardly been stuck to the walls. You only have to eye it up for stripping and it just about jumps off the wall. So maybe, because this paper is well stuck means there isn't distemper underneath, so therefore not such a big job once I strip off the remaining paper.

    Is there ANY good reason to paint the wallpaper? Or do I have to get my big girls knickers on, strip the paper and deal with what ever I find behind it?

    Thanks!

    Mary
     
  2. geraldthehamster

    geraldthehamster

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    I don't see any reason not to, apart from the poor edges you mention. if you can live with those it will be a lot less work than stripping, especially if the plaster underneath proves not to be in good condition
     
  3. Tigercubrider

    Tigercubrider

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    What about using lining paper?
    It should look better than painting over backing, and less work than removing it all?
     
  4. geraldthehamster

    geraldthehamster

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    I honestly think that after two or three coats of paint, you won't be able to tell the difference.
     
  5. opps

    opps

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    If there is distemper under the backing paper, it will become reactivated once you apply the first coat of emulsion.

    I have previously lined over backing paper but the amount of time spent slicing bubbles and cutting away lifting joins proved to be a false economy in about 12.5% of cases.

    Simply spraying the backing paper with water and waiting to see if it any bubbles will shrink back will give you a very rough indicator.
     
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