Many times when we buy an old property .. a house, an apartment, a loft, a country farm, we only see the bad shape and lots of work in front. But, if we give a closer look, there are a lot of great possibilities, old corners that tells a history, antique windows with such memories, tall charming roofs, interesting stair cases, unique iron banisters. Much to rebuild, to tile it up, to paint, to arrange, to lamp, to dress, to furnish, to garden it… Exciting!! Yeah, maybe you need help. And this is exactly what I love to do the most. Those old buildings hide some secrets that are about to be revealed…
Lets start with the lines of the facade and the architectural moment, these has to be studied. First step is to respect it and to improve it. Prospect and use the original colour, if possible. Outside nothing is more beautiful that an old style lady from the past garnished by good architecture and original materials, into a new dress. And inside? This can be another story.
Today we will not discuss further details, lets only focus on the walls, that are one of the initial interferences that we must deal with. Here we will assume that they are original and entire. Behind those old walls you can find any kind of material, depending on the region and at the moment they were built. Lets give it a try and start to remove the cover plaster, or cement, or paper, or whatever it is keeping them to reveal itself to us. Slowly the internal materials are coming to light and we can check if there is good chance to let them come or not.
Ceiling is bad too? Remove it and let it show some nice old oak beams for us. If possible, keep them exposed. A good layer of no colour mate lack after some bugs disinfection treatment will do the work. If still there are needs for changing, a good local carpenter can help with the timber work. The ceiling became high? Better then, we can use some nice hanging lamps to charme our ambient.
Original bricks can be entirely exposed or exposed in parts. If all the wall shows to be fine and original, remove carefully the cover that probably consists on cement and sand. Brush all the surface with a steel brush and keep the grout intact. Colourless mate silicone layer on top and it can be used like this. Almost no maintenance, good result.
The naked walls can have nice effect if used in different areas, and depending on the general appearance, maybe some walls can remain covered, creating contrast. Actually contrast is the key to balance the ambients, with contemporary furniture and nice lighting. The combination of the old and the new is very interesting.
If instead of bricks you find different stones, the process is the same, nevertheless the result is different. The stones can be more vulnerable to humidity and dust. The lack should be applied on spray to be possible to seal the smallest holes. The combination of the naked stones and timber, wood, concrete or painting is very cozy, and brings us to a country side natural look.
Nevertheless if the stones or bricks are not in the perfect shape you expected, we have the possibility of covering the surface of the wall with the white latex paint. Covering and sand papering after gives this old used destroyed look that we love.
After all, old walls have some history and personality. If you just enjoy how the old paint looks, maybe its not the case to remove at all, apply just a layer of silicone spray to protect the old aspect, without having that loosing pieces all the time you touch the surface. Actually this look can be very seductive. Please give a look at this link carlaaston.com, where Carl describes a little bit about the treatment that its necessary to preserve such antique walls.
Hope you liked my suggestions and we will come back with more different materials for internal and external walls. Please leave your comments below. See you!!!