One of Our Most Challenging DIY Projects So Far: Faux-Tin Ceiling Tiles



I love really old buildings, and really wanted to buy a house that was at least 100 years old.  My husband was not a fan of that idea, even though he has a shared love of all things vintage and antique.  We discovered while we were house shopping that most of the really old houses around here were built in what are now relatively unsafe neighborhoods.  Also, after we had so many problems with the craftsman house that we were renting previously, my husband convinced me that it would be better to buy a newer house and give it some of the old-fashioned details that I love.

I love old antique tin tile ceilings.  We wanted to replicate this look in my home office.  I looked at some of the new ceiling tiles that are sold now, and the patterns were all too large for the scale of my small office.  We decided to go with textured paintable wallpaper that was made to look like tin ceiling tiles.  We had no idea how much work it was going to be to get this project completed.

While both my husband and I have used wallpaper in the past, we have not ever used the self-adhesive type of wallpaper.  We thought it would be easier, but I am convinced that it was not easier at all.  We had to soak the strips for a set amount of time, per the instructions, which did not seem to be quite enough on the first strip.  The first strip was too dry, and we had to end up wetting it quite a bit while we were trying to put it up.  We both ended up with soggy wallpaper falling into our faces since it was not adhering to the ceiling.

We soaked the second strip for a little bit longer, which ended up being too long.  It was a soggy mess and tore in a few places while we tried to place it up on the ceiling.  By the third or fourth strip, we finally seemed to find a good soaking time that seemed to work for us.  It definitely helped having two people working on the task while trying to adhere the paper to the ceiling, both of us on a ladder.

Halfway through the room, we decided to take a break and go to a coffee shop.  Since it was a particularly hot day, I was craving an iced coffee. However, since I am pregnant, I am not drinking any caffeine.  I ordered an iced milk with a shot of decaf coffee for flavor.  We aren’t exactly sure what happened (perhaps the coffee shop had left the milk sitting out for a while in the heat?), but by the time we got home and tried to resume our very daunting task, I was too dizzy and nauseated to even stand up (way beyond my normal pregnancy symptoms).  My poor husband somehow managed to complete the whole rest of the ceiling while I was trying to get some rest.  I honestly do not know how he did it…it was really difficult with the two of us working on it!

After all of the self-adhesive glue and wallpaper dried, he noticed that many of the edges near the seams did not stick to the ceiling.  He had to go through and do a second round of gluing with regular wallpaper paste (perhaps that would have been easier to use in the first place).  Finally, once he finished all of that, I painted the wallpaper with two coats of beautiful shiny, metallic silver paint from the Martha Stewart collection.  The whole project was a lot of work, but I am so happy with the end result. 🙂  Combined with my vintage chandelier (that we actually purchased for part of our wedding reception decor, seen here!), and the ceiling medallion around the chandelier, my office looks completely glam now!

The full unveiling of my new home office coming soon!

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