{wallpaper tips}

Jane Hedin - Professional paperhanger

Jane Hedin, professional paperhanger, wiping any excess adhesive off the paper.

Tips for Wallpaper Prep

Wall coverings are back—in every style. From contemporary to traditional, the variety of offerings today are beautiful, artistic and can add visual pizzazz to your home. But before you can hang up wallpaper on an accent wall, in the nursery, or elsewhere in your home, you need to prep your walls. Here are some helpful tips.

If the room currently has old wallpaper on the walls, you have to remove it. If the old wallpaper is fabric-backed or strippable, you can carefully pull it from the walls. Start by gently pulling a corner of one strip at the baseboard until the entire section peels away. Some styles leave behind a paper backing, which needs to come off next by wetting the surface with DIF remover and scraping with a broad knife.

For non-strippable wallpaper, removers are available that soak onto the old wall covering’s surface. Before you begin, be sure to turn off electricity to the room, cover outlets with tape, and protect the floors with drop cloths or towels. You can also rent a wallpaper steamer to remove old wallpaper. A few Hirshfield’s stores have steamers to rent, but call first and verify they have a rental steamer and that it’s not checked out.

Paper Tiger

Score the surface of the wallpaper first to help the liquid remover penetrate more quickly and then apply the remover. Once the paper is loose, you should be able to remove it with a wallpaper scraper. Any paste residue that remains needs to be washed off with DIF stripper plus a rinse with clean water. If you see signs of mildew, it needs to be removed with equal parts bleach and water, rinsed thoroughly, and allowed to dry.

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{bits & pieces: why men fear painting wood paneling}

 

painted wood panel

The Decorologist

It’s been four years since The Decorologist dug deep into the male psyche attempting to figure out Why Men Fear Painting Wood? I don’t think mens’ attitudes about painting wood have changed since then. Every day Hirshfield’s sales people hear, “my husband doesn’t like painted wood,” or “why did we put in oak trim if we’re just going to paint it?” Hmm…

Whether you’re pro or con on the issue of painting wood paneling this post will make you smile.

Since Frank and Elizabeth Hirshfield opened their first store in 1894, it has been our mission to do the best job possible meeting customer needs and solving customer problems. Hirshfield’s. People and products you can trust.

{window treatment wednesday: the layering effect}

WTW: Layering Window Treatments

When you move into a home, you want to create a space that reflects your interests, style, and vibe. Through furniture, decorations, paint and little touches, bit by bit, it becomes your own. Another way to make a home personalized is by adding visual interest with window coverings.

Shannon Scarrella says that it’s common for people who move into a used home to add visual interest with window coverings. “Layered window treatments provide a finished look to the room,” Scarrella explains. “For example, maybe the home has honeycomb shades in a nice, neutral shade—this is great, but some people feel it’s an unfinished look. This is where panels and toppers come into play.”

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{friday finds: how to photograph a before and after room}

It’s not as easy as it seems to photograph your home. More goes into it than a click and a flash. If you’re trying to show home improvements in before and after shots, it is especially important to photograph the room in it’s best light for the after shot. There are some tips to accentuate the positive changes you have made. These photographs are meant to emphasize what a wonderful job you’ve done transforming the drab to fab!

A side-by-side comparison shows the vast changes you can make to a room.

A side-by-side comparison shows the vast changes you can make to a room.

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{friday finds: decorating with red, white and blue}

Desktop7
The party’s over. Or is it? Mosquito bites and a flag plopped in the hallway are my reminders of the gorgeous Fourth of July we had in Minnesota yesterday. Thank goodness for no rain! As a tribute to the colors of Independence Day, here are some red, white, and blue rooms for your viewing pleasure.

sarahsmasterSarah Richardson’s Master Bedroom at her cottage. Read the rest of this entry »

{interior paint solutions: caulk failure}

Caulk failure is the loss of the protective moisture seal due to the loss of initial adhesion and flexibility.

Caulk failure is the loss of the protective moisture seal due to the loss of initial adhesion and flexibility.

Good caulk will help you save energy, avoid moisture damage and prevent pest problems. The best caulk for the job depends on the situation. If you didn’t get it right the first time around, there are ways to improve and fix caulk failure.

There are three types of caulk failure: adhesive, cohesive, and substrate. Simply put, the bond between the caulk and the substrate can fail, the caulk itself can tear, or the substrate can break. Problems with caulked joints are commonly due to one of two errors. Either the substrate was not effectively prepared, or the wrong product was selected. Consider how it will be used before choosing a product.

First, consider what materials the joint is made of and how much movement it is likely to encounter. Silicone, for example, adheres well to glass and tile but poorly to wood. Paint won’t stick to pure 100 percent silicone caulk. Although products with different chemistries claim to be flexible, some are better suited for frequent joint movement. For most interior painting, 100 percent acrylic caulks, are recommended. They will seal cracks and adhere to most surfaces, even when moisture is present. Remember that caulk generally is not recommended for gaps that exceed .5″ wide at their midpoint.

To spearhead the problem from the beginning, try priming. Priming is essential for better adhesion, sheen uniformity and durability. The following Hirshfield’s products will ensure the caulk will have the best chance to succeed: #88-1250 Drywall Primer for the interior, Hirshfield’s #88-4250 Latex or #88-6050 Oil for exterior. Then select a top quality Hirshfield’s interior paint in the color and sheen of your choice.

{scuffs, chips and nicks – quick fixes to get your home ready for guests}

How is it that scuffs, chips and nicks can stay hidden, completely invisible to the naked eye, until you decide to have guests over? As soon as the RSVP’s start showing up so do all of those imperfections; the scratch on the coffee table, the nick in the banister, all of those scuffs on the kitchen floor. If you’re looking to take care of these tiny little eyesores before holiday guests arrive, here are some quick fixes that will leave your home scuff, chip and nick free!

Cleaning scuffs off of linoleum floors
Wash away scuff marks by rubbing them with a sponge or soft brush (nothing abrasive) and a solution of dishwashing detergent and water. You can also rub a pencil eraser over scuff marks to make them disappear.

Removing scratches from wooden surfaces
For scratches that have penetrated beyond the finish, try rubbing a pecan or walnut gently across the surface of the scratch. You’ll fill the wood naturally, quickly and cleanly – and the natural oils in the nut will ensure that it lasts.

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