Working on period homes – overcoming the challenges


Period properties, despite their popularity, can be fraught with decorating challenges. Here professional painter and decorator Scott Barney, shares four common period property challenges.

Period properties have endured many decades of redecoration and of course, adhesives, material qualities and application processes haven’t always been as evolved as they are today. Removing existing wallcoverings can be a tense moment, and results can vary between bringing the plaster off the wall (meaning expensive repair work and putting a hold on the decorating), right up to the wall covering lifting away in large easy sections with little to no resulting mess.

One of the best features in period properties in the deep skirting boards, and when finished to a high standard they can really bring to life a painted room. Unfortunately, many DIY enthusiasts fall short of a quality finish when it comes to these much larger skirting boards and it’s common to find solid old gloss, with lots of runs and drips.

One of the most desirable features in any period home is the original floorboards, so learning how to revive them is a key skill for a painter and decorator operating in a postcode with older properties. Removing carpet from older properties is a messy and unpleasant job, with the decayed backing creating a green sand which can be hard to sweep up.

It’s not unusual to find that the carpet has been glued down in some areas and you will need the right products to get it up.

For me, the only way to achieve razor sharp lines when painting with dark period colour paints is to use a premium-grade masking tape, like the ones from the Q1 range. White wood, white ceilings and dark walls is an iconic look for older properties, especially Victorian, Edwardian and Georgian homes, but achieving a straight line is a real challenge due to the age of the plaster and woodwork. Taking time to mask carefully can create razor sharp lines that really bring these older rooms to life.

Working on period homes – overcoming the challenges
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