Question: I live in a mobile home built around 1970, so there are about three layers of wallpaper in the bathroom. Once I got to the actual base, I realized that it wasn't paneling like the rest of the home. I'm not even really sure what it is -- it has a really grainy texture, almost like plywood. And now I have no idea what to do with it! All I know is that I don't want wallpaper. Please help!-- Jennifer M.
It sounds like the best solution to the grainy, plywood-textured walls in your bathroom is to cover them up, which is what the previous homeowners tried to do -- by wallpapering over them.
You'd be surprised at the number of good options that are on the market today for paneling. It's not the faux wood paneling of yesterday -- today, manufacturers can simulate almost anything using the latest technology. For example, if you prefer a tiled look, check out Georgia-Pacific's Lionite tileboard. These 4' x 8' boards have a baked-on, water-resistant melamine finish -- perfect for the bathroom. They are offered in a number of colors and textures and are available at most home improvement centers, including Home Depot (homedepot.com) and Lowe's (lowes.com). Georgia-Pacific also offers one of my favorite "quick fixes" -- Ply-Bead Panels. These 4' x 8' panels are made of durable southern pine and come in 1.6" beaded board. All you need to do is give them a coat of paint. Beaded board is a great look and, installed floor to ceiling, would cover your old plywood easily. Check out Georgia-Pacific's Website at www.gp.com. It offers great tips, product specs and installation guidelines that you might find helpful in your decision-making process.
Another option, which I also like, is the paintable textures from Graham & Brown. I know you said you didn't want wallpaper, but this is different. It is a prepasted product that is easy to install and has texture and pattern. Best of all, it's paintable, so you're not committed to one look -- you can change it to match your towels from season to season. It comes in a number of great patterns that would be appropriate for the bathroom. I like the "Linen" textured wallcovering. It would conceal your blemished wall, yet add a soft texture and a spalike feel to your space. These wall coverings are available at Home Depot, The Great Indoors (www.thegreatindoors.com) and Menards (www.menards.com), or you can call (800) 554-0887 to get more information about the product. The paper costs about $13 to $15 per 11-yard roll and is 20.5" wide.
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