Saturday, November 23, 2013

The House of 10,000 Wallpapers

I know I have mentioned I live in DH family home which was built by his great, great grandparents.  It is huge, and quirky.  It is not a "fine" house with all the fancy Victorian type molding it was created as a utilitarian home.  It was and is a farmhouse which is over 150 years old. DH's oldest sister lives in a "fine" house. 

DH great grandmother worked for the Kaiser automobile company upholstering seats. Maw's Maw as they called her also was quite the whiz with wallpaper and would hire out to wall paper the nicer homes in the area.  Anything left over or that the owner ordered and did not like usually ended up in this house.  There are times I think that DH's ex channeled Maw's Maw because she was a wallpaper fiend too!

The Christmas Wrap wall paper with the striped border.  It is still in the hallway heading up the stairs and the hallway into the laundry room.

The funky geometric design which is on the wall going to the basement.

The green wallpaper with the dogwood looking flowers, flower border and brocade ceiling.  This is the one room in the house that no one has touched to remodel.  We call it the junk room.  Currently the guest bed is set up in this room.  It has the lovely old coved ceilings.

Boarded up in the wood-stove chimney area is this yellow and green foil tree and flower wallpaper. 

Remember I said our house was quirky.  Well this is the one thing that just makes me wonder.  How often have you seen a stairway that goes up in the middle of the  house?

Yep this is the stairway going upstairs.  There is a short hallway upstairs opening up onto the 4 bedrooms and 1 bathroom.  The bottom ends in a short alcove with a door heading into my sewing room to the left if you are looking up the stairs and the dining room to the right, and a wall straight ahead.  Do not plan on taking anything large up these stairs, cause it will never get around the corner, and nothing will ever come back down.  Kind of scary huh?  This is still lathe and plaster.  Someone started peeling this wallpaper years ago on the stairs and stopped.  There are at least 4 layers if not more.  The upstairs of the house was closed off by Maw's Maw for years from what I understand.  Which probably attributes all the water stains on the wallpapers.
There is this kind of pretty Victorian green with the pink flowers and flourishes.
This cream colored brocade.
This Art Deco styled motif. Just to name a few.

For some reason I think the house was originally constructed as a 2 story frame, but the 2nd floor with the weird stairway and upstairs bedrooms were not added and finished until much later.  Looking at the stairwell you see that line going across.  For some reason the plaster is really bowed there.  DH and I agree the only way to fix the stairway is to remove the old lathe and plaster and drywall the whole thing.  But if we do that we have an one of the old chimneys to remove and open up the upstairs a bit more. 

Most recently DH's ex had the minty green/blue brocade and floral border in the dining room which I have been working at removing this year.  Sorry but the room is too big and dark with only the one window, and the color is just not very inviting to dine in. 

The green ivy border going around the master suite.  That was removed before I moved in and the blue/green walls were painted a bright cheery yellow and all the woodwork was cleaned up, sanded and painted. 
The kitchen herb border going around the main bath.  I am just not ready to even tackle this one yet.
The leopard print border in the one bedroom. All gone, now to figure out if I can live with the beige on the walls.  Oh even the floor is painted in this room with a leopard print throw rug. 
And the bird houses.  Like the yellow, not a fan of the birdhouses or the same color ceiling as the walls. 
OK so maybe I exaggerated a bit there are not 10,000 wallpapers but when you are removing them it sure as heck seems like it.  Slowly over time I will put my mark and style to it and make it my own.

Ever lived somewhere that had something horrendous?  If so what was it and how long did it take you to change it?

Today I am thankful for patience.  It takes plenty of it to love a house back into good condition which has been left to it's own for a long time.  I know there are plenty of people that would just run out and take out a loan to "fix" it but DH and I can't see doing it, and we thoroughly enjoy the time we spend together working on the different projects. 


  1. Hmm, some interesting choices of decor there!

  2. what a funny post. I like the title and I guess if you have as much as you do it would seem like 10,000 kinds. I do like the Christmas paper but I guess not on a wall. lol
    I did live in a house about 20 years ago that had some really horrible orange and brown wall paper in the kitchen and shag carpet in the house. We never did get around to taking it out before we had to move. Thank goodness!


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