I can't stand the wood paneling in the front room of my house. I am renting, is there any way to cover the walls without doing any harm to the wood?
You could buy some inexpensive fabric and hang it on the walls using thumb tacks. The tacks will leave really small holes which should be nearly invisible.
You can also apply fabric (I use sheets) to walls with liquid starch. Just mix up the starch according to box or bottle directions for clothing, soak the fabric and then apply it to the walls. Smooth out all the wrinkles. when it dries it will look nice and when you get ready to move you scape loose a corner and pull. It comes off clean without damaging the walls. And the bonus is you get to reuse the fabric after a wash.
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Does anyone know of an inexpensive, reversible way to cover up wood paneling? I want to change the look of my son's nursery, but want to be able to change it back to wood when we sell in a few years.
Jcoandwsf from Marion
I have heard of soaking fabric in liquid starch and putting it on a wall like wallpaper. You can then pull it off when you are ready. I haven't tried it, but sounds intriguing. Don't know if it would work on paneling. (03/10/2007)
On the site HGTV.com there are a lot of ideas about using fabric to decorate a wall. There are instructions about using liquid starch on fabric and applying it like wallpaper (use episode RXR-901 in search box), there are also directions on how to staple fabric at the top of the wall, in either a shirred look or a flat look. You would then use a wood trim nailed to the wall at the top to cover the staples. Of course, when you are ready to sell and would take it down, you would have nail and staple holes in your wood paneling. (03/10/2007)
When my son was a baby, we hung an embroidered quilt on the wall behind his crib. It was very nicely done and I was afraid to use it as bedding and ruin it. This might be an option for you as well. I have also seen people drape fabric from the center of the ceiling to make a "tent" against the walls. You can buy muslin cheaply and dye it to whatever color suits your color scheme, or leave it in it's natural color. (03/10/2007)
I like the ideas given here so far and wanted to expand on them a little bit. You can go to the bedding department in your local discount department store and buy twin sized FLAT sheets in whatever pattern/color you like. Then soak them in liquid starch and continue as the posters above have instructed. If you don't have a particular "theme" in mind (like Toy Story, Care Bears, etc.) and want to take your chances, you can find really good deals on flat sheets at thrift shops, or the Goodwill or Salvation Army. If you can only get one of the twin sheets in a pattern that you like, then just buy colored twin sheets in colors that compliment the patterned one.
Hope this helps stir some creative ideas!
Sheila in Titusville, FL (03/13/2007)
The new contact paper is much less stickier than old versions - you could try that & scrub walls afterward. Even make a quilt pattern from different patterns of paper. (03/13/2007)
Wouldn't the dampness from the fabric ruin the wood underneath? (06/02/2008)
I also like the quilt idea. One thought, however, is whether you should paint your paneling -- not a fun project, but it will look better when you go to sell. (06/13/2008)