Blog, SoCS

SoCS – On Wallpaper

It has been so long since I wrote SoCS, but Linda is always on time like clockwork. If you want to see what she has cooked up for us, pop over to her blog and join in.

Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “wallpaper.”Use it however you’d like. Have Fun!

Wallpaper and I go way back. It seemed like every old home where I grew up had wallpaper. Most of the houses had little or no insulation, but there were always layers of wallpaper, often applied on top of newspapers used as a defense against the cold.

My grandparents’ homes seemed to be the exception. My maternal grandmother’s home had shiplap walls – wide planks of wood and in their home, painted white. My maternal grandmother’s home had wall panels that were of a spongy-like consistency. I never knew what the material was.

My grandmother did have books of wallpaper samples, though. I loved paging through them. The scenes and textures were very ornate covered with images of lands far away, or bright colored peacocks strutting through garden gates.

When we moved to Ohio, I do not recall wallpaper being used in any of my friend’s houses. Everything was drywall and paint. When I returned home to Virginia after marrying, I was back in the old houses with layers and layers of history on the walls.

My first husband and I lived in his grandmother’s old farmhouse after my daughter was born. I have very vivid memories of lying in bed watching snow flakes blow in through the cracks where the years of newspaper and wallpaper could no longer keep the elements at bay. I will say I loved reading the dates and the bits of articles that would be revealed when the wallpaper fell away and left only the newspaper that had once been the first line of defense.

Hubby and I bought two houses with wallpapered rooms. Never again. Someone had super glued the bright red train border to the wall in one bedroom. We had to replace the drywall to remove it. It is beautiful, but not for me!

Whose stories are hidden

All along the walls

Layers and layers of

Lifted corners

Peeling away the past

Anyone can stop and

Peer inside a life

Every moment played out, waiting for the final


33 thoughts on “SoCS – On Wallpaper”

  1. When I stripped wallpaper before reappearing, I borrowed my neighbors copper water sprayer, filled it with hot water then sprayed the old stuff, let it soak in and then peeled it off like a banana skin. So easy. Then he died and I converted everything to painted walls. 👍

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We purchased a wallpaper steamer, Steve. It helped but still required using one of those little wallpaper scoring tools. I definitely prefer a clean painted wall.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It goes in cycles, I think. We switched to painted walls awhile ago and love it. I come from a painting family so it was expected that I’d do it and I’ve done and redone bout walls, all the trim and I like Benjamin Moore paint but it’s gotten so expensive, nearly $70/g for some exterior paint just last week. May go back to Behr, or, better yet, just decide that we’ve finished with the painting 😂

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Paint is so expensive. We like Sherwin Williams and their line of low VOC paint. I cannot imagine what it might cost to paint our interior. We have 14 – 18 ft ceilings in some places. Ours needs it but the task seems daunting! If you can call it done, that would be a victory in my book!

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  2. In 1978, I bought an old Victorian/Edwardian ( built in 1900, sold new in 1901) house that had wallpaper in every room, as well as ‘woodchip’ wallpaper on every ceiling. It took weeks of using a hired steam-stripper to remove all of it, and I swore I would never have wallpaper in a house again. I never have since.
    But as a child, I put the wallpaper offcuts to good use, as I used them to cover my schoolbooks to protect them. 🙂
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It seems once a person has had to remove wallpaper, they are less inclined to use it again. Clever use for the leftover wallpaper, though. We used brown paper bags.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. The house I grew up in had layers of wallpaper, and when my mom got tired of a room, she’d pop down to the hardware store and pick out a new print. When I bought this Victorian, mom helped me do some of the papering and thought I was crazy prepping the walls and taking off the old!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Yes, friends of ours bought our first maisonette, about four years after we lost contact, not knowing it was ours. They stripped off the wallpaper and found our names where we had written them on the walls 😃💜

        Liked by 1 person

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