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Horsehair plaster in rental


I currently rent an apartment built in 1918, the walls are plaster and there are some original moldings and insets into the ceiling. There are some cracks, and the old plaster repairs are visible. Sometimes the paint chips off of the celing, and its peeling on the dumbwaiter's door. I have obtained permission to paint from my landlord and have painted a bit in the kitchen around the stove to create a cleanable surface instead of the flat paint that is currently on the rest of my apartment. I used KILLZ to cover the grease and then painted in a dark brown using Behr interior semi-gloss. Unfortunately all of the "character" (plaster unevenness and old cracks) show through. A paint store recommended paintable wallpaper, and some have sugguested applying fabric using starch. I'm terrified to damage the integrity of the apartment but desperate to paint and ideally I'd like to have my walls look nice instead of uneven. What can I do? What is safe for the walls? Is there a paint choice or type of roller to minimize? Should i use a certain kind of primer? What would wallpaper or lining paper do? Would it look like drywall or just out of place in this gem? I love my old home, but it needs some help!


Re: Horsehair plaster in rental

A paint job is only as good as the prep job. It's an old wall, and no matter what you do to it, it's still an old wall.

here's an idea, if your landlords goes along: cover the wall around the stove with stainless steel sheets, 21 or 22 gauge. It will give your kitchen that restaurant look, and it's easy to clean. It may sound expensive, but it's cheaper than pint and labor.

Wallpaper around the stove is not a good idea.

Re: Horsehair plaster in rental

My house was built in 1920. To retain the original character of having been lived in for 90 years, we scra-pe away the loose paint and leave the imperfections as long as they don't stick out. We do fill screw holes. Since most of the trim was oil based, we prime with Zinnser oil based primer then top coat with latex. The walls can be treated the same way.

Its an old home. Embrace the history.

Behind the stove you can add stainless (somewhat hard to keep clean looking) or porcelain sheets pre-made to fit. Usually you can find such sheets in stove widths at appliance stores or in the range hood section at the big box stores. You can get one to color match the appliances.

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