DIY Guide Home Improvement

My Winter Home Improvement Disaster

A few winters ago, I found myself watching a lot of design shows. One day, I saw a show on TLC that featured a faux suede wall treatment. It seemed so easy that I decided to do this one myself. At the time, I didn’t ask myself basic questions like: will this be easy to remove and why would I want my walls to look like cow skin anyway? Now I wish I had asked a lot more questions before taking on this do-it-yourself project.

It required just a few materials: ripped grocery bags, a paintbrush, the best price impact driver, and white glue. It sounded easy enough. So I went to the grocery store and asked if they had paper bags that I could have or buy. They didn’t. I decided that the rolls of postal paper would achieve the same effect. I also decided that by white glue, they must have meant wallpaper glue so I bought a large container of that, as well.

This project took several days to complete. My daughter and some of her friends helped and we eventually covered an entire hallway of our home in this “faux suede” wall treatment. We had so much fun while we were doing it, I then decided that we might as well go ahead and do the same to the hall bathroom.

After completely covering the bathroom in this light brown paper, I decided it made the room too dark- it was already a small bath. It now felt like the walls were closing in on me. And so, I did what any creative person might do; I painted over the paper itself. At the time it didn’t occur to me that this would all be hell to remove one day. I was just excited about having completed a project, and for the first year or so, we liked it well enough.

But over time, as always is the case for me, I began to notice little flaws. Small edges that had begun peeling up started to annoy me. At first, I would just glue them back down. Then one day I decided to begin removing the paper from the hall. I don’t know why I’d thought taking it off would be as easy as putting it up was. In retrospect, I should have known better.

After peeling just enough off the wall to realize that removing this was probably going to take the rest of my life, I just gave up completely and hung a picture over the torn spot. As far as the bathroom with textured, multi-layered painted-over “faux suede,” I’ve just decided to live with that for a while as well. It’s probably going to require professional help to deal with that one. (Either a contractor or therapist.) One day I’ll deal with these disasters I call my walls. Now when I see these types of shows, I find myself wishing they aired with a warning. That particular episode should have been called Fashion Faux Pas: Faux Suede Wall Edition.

Brian Singleton a retired news editor and tech enthusiast. He shares a deep love for science and technology and wishes to connect with others through this his content.

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