Finally, we are done with the Octagon House in Camillus. It was labor intensive, complicated work, yet it was a huge learning experience for us, which is always a positive thing. We learned the "Do's & Don'ts" of wallpapering with scanned, historically replicated paper, we created our own wheat paste, and we discovered just how flexible Maggie is! But after 2 1/2 long months we are at the end of this journey here in Camillus.
The YellowBook came out this week (look for our ad in the center of the phone book, its a whole new design) and we have been getting constant calls, lots of estimates to go on, and new people to meet! So, we bid farewell to the Octagon house, and move onto our next job; Murals (Thomas The Tank Engine & Gerber Daisy's) Can't wait to post pictures of that! This is why we love this job it's always a new and interesting project!
Yes, we are still at the Octagon House, but making tremendous progress. Having to make our own wheat paste and using archival paper has slowed down the process a bit, it certainly isn't like putting up vinyl paper with modern day paste. Maggie has done such a fantastic job at painstakingly measuring, trimming, cutting, pasting and laying the paper, that her patience blows me away. For anyone who knows Maggie, you know she is not a patient person. She is a pistol, and moves very quickly to get a job done. She likes to have a dead line, and then work quickly (yet efficiently) to get it done BEFORE she reaches it, sort of a game she plays with herself, but it works very effectively for our business, but this job, this job is different, it takes TIME and PATIENCE. Hmmmm! Perhaps God is trying to teach us something :)
We first have to measure the wall, and mark the lines. Then we measure the piece of paper against the wall markings, then we cut the paper. Once it is measured out we move into the living room area, where are cutting table is set up, and cut the paper once again, this time more accurately. When it is the correct size, we lay it out flat and paste it. We have tried a roller to distribute the paste, but have learned that the brush is a more effective tool for this process. It actually spreads the paste on more evenly.
Once the whole piece is pasted you have to move quickly, because it doesn't have a lot of playing time, meaning it can dry out quickly.Getting it back onto the wall is the tricky part, especially when it is a long piece. You need to be extremely careful that you do not bend it or brush it up against something.
Also, because there is no protective coating on the front, like vinyl wallpaper, you need to be extra gentle not to nick, or rub the color/dye off. Finally, once it is in place, you need to smooth it out with a dry rag (not wet, because again, it will rub off the color/dye) to get out all the air pockets. Maggie then, cuts off any excess paper along the bottom and then adds extra paste to the seems, ensuring that they will adhere correctly.
Few! That's just one piece, now she has about 25 more to go....Do you see what I mean about being patient. I must admit though that the end result is really beautiful. The formal dining room is now complete. I've included a before and after picture, as well as, a close up of the beautiful paper that was chosen.I can't wait until she has to tackle the spiral staircase. I might have to be sick that day ;)