I came across a question at Curbly where a reader asked about covering popcorn stucco walls with fabric.
I have an interesting problem. Interesting for others, but driving me batty.
I have moved into an apartment that is the old Mayor’s mansion in the town I live in. It really is a super cool space. Large rooms, hardwood floors, floor to ceiling windows, a grand entrance…. Just great. EXCEPT the master bedroom. Someone, I have no clue who, felt that putting a chair rail around the room with popcorn ceiling style stucco stuff on the lower half was a good design decision.
The chair rail juts out quite a bit from the wall, so I was thinking that perhaps I could staple gun fabric from the chair rail down to the floor… but No clue what to do.
Any suggestions? Help. Please.
As I was attempting to answer her question it became obvious to me that my answer was too long to post in a comment, so here is how I would cover textured walls with fabric.
- Measure from the bottom of the chair rail, down to the top of the baseboard. You will probably want to measure this distance in several different places – in an old house walls and floors are rarely square. Take the greatest measurement and add a minimum of 2 inches – this will determine the fabric width you require. Many decorator fabrics come in 54″ widths. If the measurement is greater than 54″ you might need to search out fabric in extra-wide widths (available for making duvet covers, etc).
- Then measure the perimeter of your room to calculate the length of your fabric requirements. Add an extra 3 to 4″ for every vertical stop at doorways and windows. (This could add up to a seriously large amount of fabric.)
- Choose a fabric with a pattern that would look good run horizontally. Stripes would not be recommended.
- Remove the chair rail and baseboard- carefully.
- Start in one corner and using a staple gun, begin stapling the top edge of the fabric onto the wall. Line the fabric up so that its top edge will be covered by the chair rail when it goes back up. Work your way around the room. When you come to the edge of a doorway, make a vertical cut in the fabric making sure there is enough fabric along the vertical edge to fold under. Windows will be a little trickier. You need to leave enough fabric along the vertical edge to fold under, but you will want to stop your vertical cut at the bottom of the window frame.
- Once the top edge of the fabric has been stapled around the entire room, you can start on the bottom edge. Start in the middle of each fabric section. Lightly run your hand down over the fabric from the top to the bottom. The bottom edge should stop within the area that the baseboard will cover. Start stapling the bottom. Work you way out to the sides of each fabric section, lightly smoothing the fabric as you go.
- The places where you meet windows will have to be cut and fit precisely. Sometimes with older homes there may be a slight gap between the window frame and the wall. If this is the case, take advantage of it by sliding the fabric into this gap. The only other alternative would to make very small cuts at a time and meticulously fit your fabric around the shape of the frame. Top staple these sections as close to the frame as possible or try a little fabric glue to adhere the fabric to the wall around window frames.
- With all the fabric stapled to the walls, replace both the chair rail and the baseboard.
I would do some major calculating and check out how easily the chair rail and baseboards could be removed before attempting. Depending on the size of your room and the fabric requirements, this could be a very cost-prohibitive diy project.
Discount Fabric Sources:
A less expensive option for dealing with textured walls would be an ultra-flat paint finish. The flat paint finish would minimize the appearance of a wall texture as it would absorb light instead of reflecting it. Your eye would be drawn more to the paint color and less to the texture of the wall.