If you have any Do-it-Yourself project questions or advice needs, please email Abe Goodman at firstname.lastname@example.org with subject Handyman and your question
The Mancave Edition
The joyous day when a father finally kicks the last kid out of the house and toward college is a good one. Your wife is crying over her empty nest and in disbelief that her little incubations are all grown up, you, you have something else on your mind.
How do I make this house look like a man’s place again?
For career fathers who started implanting the wife from day one, this may be a tough thing to do. Your house is likely filled with pastel colors and wallpapered bathrooms. Even for us proper fathers who went to college before having kids, your basement is all nicely decored and hardly a place to invite the boys over to watch the big game.
You need to make your house a true man’s space again and that is why I’m introducing my series, the DIY, Mancave Edition. In this Do It Yourself series we will help you answer your home improvement ideas and shoot videos for the more complex things that need fixing. Today, we have a DIY for stripping Frenchy wuss designer wallpaper, so you can put up some good American paint from Home Despot or even better, Lowe’s or Roach True Value Hardware.
Step 1: Silence the Wife’s Nagging/Preparation
Your wife is not going to like ‘her’ nest being disturbed. To get around this, you’ll have to pay for her to have a spa day with one of her girlfriends. Just pay for both of them and tell them to have a nice lunch or dinner too. After she’s done thanking you for being sensitive and helping her get over her blues, go to your local hardware store and buy all your do it yourself supplies.
For the walls you need to remove all your wife’s annoying wallpaper, make sure to place drop cloths. You will also want to remove all the switch plates from your electrical outlets. A portable light is needed if the room you are in does not have natural light, as you will need to cut all power to the room in which you’re working to be safe.
Step 2: Make Sure You Have All Supplies
Shoppling List (Please Print this List)
Wallpaper scorer, Dish detergent, spray bottle, fabric softener, wallpaper solvent, putty knife, drop cloths, duct tape, masking tape, putty knife, a ladder you should already own, dishcloth/sponge, eye protection gear, soda, peanuts, multi-head screwdriving unit
Step 3: Score Wallpaper and Mix Abe’s Special Wallpaper Concoction
1. Simply use the Wallpaper Scorer to create small holes in the wallpaper. When you mix up my special goop, you’ll see it soaks right in and lifts the wallpaper.
2. Mix up some hot water and fabric softener in equal parts. You can use the wife’s measuring cups if you did not buy a bottle with measuring units. So if you add four cups hot water, you have to add four parts of the fabric softener. Don’t mix gallons at a time, so the water stays hot enough to help dissolve down the adhesive glue that’s sticking the nasty wallpaper on your hard earned walls.
Step 4: Saturate Walls in Abe’s Special Wallpaper Concoction
Use your spray bottle to completely saturate a scored section of your wall with my special concoction. It should be left to soak in for a good 3 to five minutes, giving you plenty of time to get a swig of soda and some peanuts while you are waiting. Do not do too large of an area, or you will end up with a splotchy mess. Work in neat, organized units, keeping in mind that if you soak too much at once you will just create more work for yourself.
Step 5: Reclaim Your Man’s Wall
Carefully grab pieces of wallpaper at a bottom corner (you can use your putty knife to help cheat them up, much like you do a first-side pancake on the griddle). Carefully pull up and use to putty knife, using the ‘don’t stick pancake’ technique as you work your way up. The wallpaper will slide right off if you keep soaking and doing it slow enough. In time, that wall will be bared and prepared for treatment before your paint job.