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New build decorating :: Posted by: Admin on August 27th, 2013

New build decorating

For sale sign graphic

So you have bought a lovely new build property, it is just what you wanted, off street parking for two cars, a room for a home office, a lovely garden and a maintenance free exterior a kitchen to die for and a bath big enough to soak away the days stresses. But you move in and quickly become overwhelmed by the sea of magnolia and white everywhere. So you decide you are going to repaint and wallpaper your new property to suit your taste and style, but should you really be doing it?

Can I paint or wallpaper the interior of a new build property

When you move in you should be told by the builder what you should and should not do, generally builders say not to paint the interior walls from anything from 3 -18 months, this will depend on the construction of your house. Plasterboard walls dry quicker than rendered brick walls.

As a general rule of thumb 9 -12 months is typical. Your new house would of had a lot of water used in it’s construction, the timbers used still have moisture in them, by allowing this moisture to escape quickly by ventilating the property will help speed this process up.

Your builder may say you can re-decorate but only if you use non-vinyl emulsion and not to wallpaper the walls so moisture can escape. As the building dries out and settles you may get settlement cracks, these are not normally anything to worry about and simply need filling and redecorating, but if you think the cracks are bigger than they should be, get them checked out.

If you are unsure if you should decorate, always ask the builder who can advise you.

If you have bought a new build property you may find this PDF from NHBC worth a read and in particular Section 7 Page 11 about decorating.

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How to measure for ceiling paper :: Posted by: Admin on October 2nd, 2012

How to measure your ceiling for ceiling paper

You may have a ceiling that is badly cracked or maybe the ceiling may of already been papered, whatever the reason for wallpapering a ceiling you are going to need to know how much paper you need to buy. Most commonly ceilings are papered with a thick paper such as 1400 gauge lining paper, an embossed paper or Anaglypta paper. If your ceiling is cracked you will still need to fill the cracks and rub them down before papering otherwise they will show.

Measuring for ceiling paper

To measure for ceiling paper you will need the following:

  • A notepad
  • A pen or pencil
  • A tape measure

To measure for ceiling paper, measure the room at its longest point. Allow a little extra at each end for trimming. Write this figure on your notepad. Now measure the room at it’s widest point, again allow a little for trimming. Note this down.

You also will need to know the length of the roll of wallpaper you are going to use, typically in the UK a single length roll is 10.05 metres, if you buy a double or quad length roll then these are obviously longer. Make a note of the length or roll on your notepad. You also are going to want to know the width of the paper, this varies but typical values are 52 or 53 cm for wallpaper and 56 cm for lining paper check with the wallpaper supplier if you are not sure of length and width of a roll of paper.

Graphic of decorator measuring ceiling

Calculating how many rolls of wallpaper needed

Once you have measured the length and width of the ceiling you are going to wallpaper and have made a note of the length and width of the wallpaper you can now go and use this great ceiling wallpaper calculator to work out how many rolls of wallpaper you need. If you measure in feet and inches the calculator allows you to convert these measurements into metric.

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How to measure a room for wallpapering :: Posted by: Admin on June 1st, 2012

How to measure a room for wallpapering

If you are going to wallpaper a room, a feature wall, a hall, landing and stairs or even an entire house you will need some idea of how many rolls of wallpaper to buy. With the cost of wallpaper becoming more and more expensive and some shops only ordering in rolls rather than keeping stock you need to have a fairly good idea how many rolls of wallpaper you need. To do this you need to measure each room or area.

Measuring for wallpaper

To measure for wallpaper you will need the following:

  • A notepad
  • A pen or pencil
  • A tape measure

To measure a complete room for wallpaper, measure around the perimeter for the room, include all doors and windows if the paper goes over the top and /or under them. If you have a picture rail or if the paper does not go over the top of windows and doors only measure the papered area and note this down on your note pad.

Now you need to measure the height of the area to be papered, this may be from the skirting boards to the ceiling or coving / cornice, a picture rail or dado rail. Again make a note of this figure.
You can measure in either feet and inches or metric, it doesn’t matter.
Floor Plan Measure for wallpaper

Feature wall

If you are measuring for a feature wall the principle is the same as above except you only measure the one wall you wish to paper, again make a note of the measurements.

Hall, Landing, and stairs

If you are wallpapering a hallway or hall landing and stairs, again the principle is the same, just treat the upstairs and one room and the downstairs as another room, you can either add the measurements together of treat them as two separate measurements. For more details on measuring a hall, landing and stairs this post is a good resource.

Calculating how many rolls of wallpaper needed

Once you have measured the area you are going to wallpaper and have made a note of the perimeter and height you can now go and use this great wallpaper calculator to find out how many rolls of wallpaper you need. If you have measured in feet and inches the calculator allows you to convert these measurements into metric.

Watch this quick video to see how easy the wallpaper calculator is to use.

Lining paper

If you are going to line your walls with lining paper rather than wallpaper, measure the same way as described above and use the wallpaper calculator, this calculator allows for a standard roll of wallpaper (10.05m by 0.53m) and although lining paper tends to be wider at 0.56m the calculator will give you a guide number of rolls, and as lining paper is cheap if you end up with a roll over it doesn’t matter.

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Water Stains :: Posted by: Admin on March 27th, 2012

How to deal with a ceiling water stain

First fix the leak

Always ensure the source of the leak is fixed and allow enough time for the water to dry out before decorating.

Getting started

When the source of the leak has been fixed and the water has fully dried out, the first thing I do if the stain is in a small area or areas is identifying the stains by drawing around each stain with a pencil so it was easier to see when I used the stain block.

Once I have highlighted all the water stains with a pencil, using a brush (or gloss roller for larger areas) I paint over the stained areas with Polycell Stain Block to cover the stains. I know how far to go as I had drawn around the stains! Having covered the stains and pencil lines with the stain block, I would then prepare the rest of the ceiling as required, filling cracks etc, while I waited for the stain block to dry. Some stains may need a second coat of stain block, if so allow the stain block to fully dry between coats. Allow the stain block to dry fully before decorating with your chosen finish coat, such as white emulsion.

Alternative options to stain block

Some people use an oil-based / solvent-based paints such as gloss, undercoat or satinwood to block out the stain, I have done this in the past but would only recommend using satinwood or undercoat due to it’s sheen level.

The finishing touch

When you paint over the stain block, satinwood, or undercoat with the finish coat which is normally emulsion you will notice the emulsion takes longer to dry over the stain blocked area’s, this is normal and you need to wait for these area’s to fully dry before applying a second coat of emulsion.

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