Given the somewhat tight timetable for prepping portions of the home prior to major moves and deliveries, added with that special " first-time-home-owner's-zest" we dove headlong into removing the old and bringing in the new!
The first priority was to strip the wallpaper from the Master Bedroom, prep the walls to receive primer and paint and remove the carpet so that the floors could be sanded and sealed.
Due to the age of the home, we did not know what to expect beneath the wallpaper. We were not even sure what the age of the paper was. And some cases in homes like these, it's the only thing holding up the old horse hair plaster walls.
Armed with a spray bottle of Zinsser DIF Wallpaer Stripper and a very weak Piranha wall paper scorer, we began the work of removing the paper. After a somewhat painful learning process on one portion of the wall, we learned that the high quality, thick vinyl paper did not need to be scored. Wetting down the vinyl portion of the paper along a seam line allows the first portion of the paper to peal off quite easily, leaving the paper backing which is glued to the wall. Applying copious amounts of diluted stripper to the paper back, letting is sit for about 5 minutes, then scrap / pealing the paper back from the wall completed the process. We were quite pleased to find that the majority of the plaster walls were in excellent condition, with a few structural / settling cracks at the corners.
We also did some primary investigation of the wood floors beneath the beautiful purple carpet. The floors are fir, and the floor in the Master Bedroom had been stained. There were a few furniture scratch marks in the center of the floor, possibly from an earlier bed.
During the stripping process, we noticed some settling in the window frame; the sill had fallen away from the rest of the frame. Now, not being from the "half-cheeked camp" of doing things, we decided to attack the problem with full force. what was exposed was a bit more work than expected...
The plaster had eroded away quite a bit, leaving the trim piece hanging on loosely. We also noted a decent air gap under the frame. Air is not necessarily a bad thing, and the area seemed quite dry, no wood rot, but the size of the gap was a bit worrisome. We decided to fill the gap a bit, leaving some room for air to circulate, patching the busted plaster, and reattaching the sill and trim correctly.
Once we reach completion of stripping and filling , we are planning to paint the room a simple, "Oatlands Subtle Taupe", nothing too strong. Stately and calm.