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Help Needed For Hall Stairs & Landing

It’s time for a change on the hall stairs and landing and I could do with some advice please. The end result will be a light creamish colour, eggshell for the woodwork and matt emulsion for the walls. The walls are not in a good condition dating from 1936 and being covered with numerous layers of emulsion or whatever they used at the time; years ago I removed the lincrusta which was on the walls up to around waist height. However you can still see the outline as shown in the photo:

I think that I have decorated this 3 times, always with paper and tried to remove the old emulsion but with mixed success, even after using an old plane blade as a scraper. Now I have got tooled up, justifying that a Mirka Deros and a Festool CTL Midi would be cheaper than replastering? I intend sanding the walls with the Deros and the woodwork with a Mirka Hand Sanding Block connected to the extractor.
The last time I removed the paper with a steamer and fetched off a section of plaster so I am not doing that again! It was Christmas and I was off for two weeks so I had to set about dotting, dabbing and skimming. Unfortunately the light in December is so bad that I didn’t see the ripples until it was too late! I thought that folded paper we’d chosen would mask these defects but it didn’t.
So when I get the sanding done I’ll be doing quite a bit of filling using Pretonnet or similar and then sanding down again.
Now to the questions:

  1. Would I be better off using Erfurt Mav Fibreliner rather than normal lining paper to mask the bits I can’t improve? I like the idea of pasting the wall especially on the long drops on the stairs
  2. I need an emulsion that is scrubbable because our yellow Labrador rubs his oily coat against the wall and probably shakes his earwax onto it as well - sorry for that! Any recommendations? Having taken heed of the threads on here I used Little Greene on the new bathroom walls (over a mist coat) and liked it but. it maybe a little expensive given that the area to be covered is about 68 square meters.
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You are a glutton for punishment :slight_smile:

If you can get the filling off to a tee that will remove the previous evidenc e of a dado and cancel out the need for lining. With the kit you have and some good lighting, and patience, it should be reasonable to expect a smooth finish. @amateurhour64 did it, so can you…

If you are considering lining because the concern is not being able to remove “ripples” in the wall by filling, then lining won’t help much.

If you can stick with filling, not only do you remove the extra work and expense of lining, but 2 coats of a good acrylic wall paint to the filler will do the job too.

I am not the best one to ask for cheap but best paint, as I don’t think it exists. The LG intelligent matt is very good, it looks like 2 x 5 litres would cover the wall area with 2 coats. Other premium paints mentioned here from Eico, Mylands, Benjamin Moore gaining traction, Eco Joker, not aware that the pricing is that varied.

If you have not paid out on lining, you can treat yourself to 2 gallons of your favourite paint.


Eico has been fantastically hard wearing and cleanable even in a heavily used kitchen like ours…I’ve used nothing but Eico Alterior so far and whilst would love to try something different I just can’t find a reason to do so.

The Eico colour chart is limited but Ben at Paints and Interiors has mixed any of our requirements to colour choice off all the usual suspects chart wise… latest one in John Lewis canteen blue for the dining room :slight_smile:

And yes forget the liming paper and just two coats of Presonett… 4 years on from getting the advice from Andy, I’m still amazed how it simply changes every characteristic of any decorated space. I’ve even got the kids doing it now in their places!!!


Thanks Andy, I’ll certainly review it when I’ve done all the filling and hopefully I won’t have to paper.
One thing that has just sprung to mind though is that the external corners are rounded wood beading not the nice straight metal ones that are in the bathroom. I always have problems filling the little recesses that are either side of the bead, perhaps coating these with pva before filling would help the adhesion.
I’ve never managed a neat job papering round these corners as the paper doesn’t always stick properly.
Obviously if I’m not using paper then I can sand the wood to a smooth finish before painting.

Thanks I’ve not heard of Eico but will look into it.

The prestonnet should have enough adhesion without introducing an extra potential issue. The broom handles are nice features exposed.

Well the paper has been removed on the landing and stairs and the scale of the problem is now revealed. It shouldn’t have been a surprise as I’ve lived with it for 42 years so I know its history! In the past we’ve patched up plenty of places and I think that that is why we always chose to paper although I dare say that with filler I could make an acceptable job of these areas.
What I am disappointed in though is not being able to remove the yellow layer of emulsion using the Mirka Deros, even using 60 grit it’s going to take a long time. I’ve just had a go at scraping it with an old but sharp plane blade and it does come off reasonable easily, maybe a purpose made paint scraper would be easier.
I’m beginning to think that I may have to resort to lining paper after scraping and sanding.
I decided also to remove the paper on the ceiling as there was a crack in the paper that coincides with one of the joists in the loft. the plaster has a rough finish but I think with a skim coat of filler over nearly all of the landing ceiling and a final sanding I can get away without papering it.
Just to make my day the fan in the bathroom has decided to imitate a machine gun - 5mm end float on the motor shaft - thank heavens for Vent Axias 2 year warranty!

Try a simple long handled wallpaper scraper with the razor blade eg Draper. That or a Bahco tungsten or the Hamilton equivalent are potential life savers. There may be some damage digging in the blade but with some diligent filling overall plus a few passes with your deros and 120 abrasive… permanent solution for easy future decorating. I think " future proofing for easy redec" is worth hanging on to as you grind through the process. Next 42 years if decorating should be straightforward.

No clue about fans lol but I suspect you are on top of it. Cheers

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