INTERIOR DESIGN + DECORATING + STYLE BY VIVIAN PANAGOS

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Wednesday, October 16, 2013

In progress: Robbie's bedroom

When I shared these images on instagram I didn't anticipate the reaction I would get. The wallpaper in Robbie's bedroom covers an entire wall and part of an adjacent wall. I have a sentimental attachment to wallpaper and it is nice that others love it as much as I do too but I'm pretty sure the 'Dislikes' would have outweighed the 'Likes' if there was that option. Circuses are pretty cool so I understand! David and I had planned to remove all of the wallpaper in the bedroom but I couldn't bring myself to do it (yet) so he removed a small strip that looked odd on its own after we removed the built-in wardrobe in his room.

Okay, let me take a step back for a second.

You might remember a million years ago we wanted to swap the office room with Robbie's bedroom. The main reason for the swap is that the office has much more natural light. The downside to the room swap is that the office is smaller than his current bedroom. After discovering some issues with the wall and ceiling in his current bedroom right right where the built-in is located, David and I made the decision to temporarily move Robbie into the office and to go to town ripping out the wardrobe and fixing the wall and ceiling issue. The wardrobe was old so there would be no love lost there.

It would only take the weekend, right? Wrong. I had a vision of the wardrobe coming apart in nice whole pieces but it was super bonded to the wall and held on with all its might. After a few hours and high kick manoeuvres, David worked out a way of kicking out one part of the frame that would cause the whole wardrobe to come down like a pack of cards. It was dramatic but it was done. But we weren't anywhere near completing this project and there were a few hiccups in store for us.

Firstly I became paranoid that the walls behind the built-in were asbestos. We brought in an expert to check it out for us and he thankfully gave us the all clear. I could have kissed him but that would be weird. The plaster walls were very old though and they needed more work to get them up to scratch than we originally thought. Also, the walls didn't join at the edge and there was a one inch gap in between that also needed filling.

While we were in the hardware store looking for materials I had the bright idea of swapping out the old skirting boards with new ones. Easy, I thought. We have already created a mess we may as well make this room look better than it was. I didn't factor in though just how crappy the plaster walls are. David used a whole lot of patience to install them and I kept myself out of his way busy laying on a second coat of paint to the walls and ceiling of the entire room using the smallest hand roller ever invented while balancing on ladders and furniture and with both of us rushing to finish before Robbie arrived home that afternoon.
We got there though and we now have a beautiful and freshly painted room with one wall of circus fun still intact and fresh new skirting boards. It would be nice if I could tell you that the project ends here and to show you a few fancy 'after' shots but we aren't quite done.

The floorboards that were hidden under the built-in were stained a different shade to the rest of the room so now we are looking at either trying to match them or to sand back the floorboards THROUGHOUT THE HOUSE and giving them a new lighter finish.

I have also thrown the idea out there of replacing the high horizontal window in the bedroom with large doors that open out into the garden and replacing the privacy glass of the other window with clear glass to bring in more natural light. We may never be done with this project and it is still to be decided if he will want this room as his bedroom again. I'm proud of us getting this far though.


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