Sunday, September 23, 2007

I Strip Freely

I have just embarked upon the most ridiculously laborious project I have ever been dimwitted enough to take on - stripping the paint off my moldings in preparation for painting my dining area. What could be more fun? The previous owners did a terrible job painting around the moldings (a pox on them!), and I made the mistake of not fixing it before I painted my living room (really, the mistake was not paying someone to handle this . . . ). Anyway, as one can see from the first picture, there are all these lumps of excess paint where the wall meets the baseboard, which just looks disgusting. Maybe I'll go back and fix the living room some day, but right now I just want to deal with the dining area and do that right. So I'm using this product called Soy Gel, which is a soy-based, biodegradable stripper, that's supposed to be nontoxic. I have to say, it doesn't smell bad and it does what it's supposed to do. Still, the process is labor intensive. There's also this stuff, like cardboard, that's getting exposed at the intersection of the wall and molding that crumbles when it's scraped (second picture). I'm not sure what it is, but I'm trying to remove the paint while disturbing as little of this as possible. In one area I covered the exposed stuff (which I'll call "stuff" for lack of a better word) with spackle and sanded it down, and think that worked. I won't really know how this whole project is turning out until I start painting and see what that looks like. Oy, what have I gotten myself into!

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