How to Make Wallpaper Paste

Reattaching Wallpaper

I needed to make wallpaper paste. Just a little to reattach half a sheet of wallpaper that had come loose below a chair-rail. It looked bad, so with a search on the internet, I found a couple recipes and settled on a flour mixture. I cut the recipe in half and still had some left over.

I used 1/2 cup flour and 1/6th cup sugar- stir together and in a small saucepan whisk in 1/2 cup water to wet the mix then add another 1/2 cup water while mixing. The key is no lumps. Over medium heat whisk the mixture. Do Not Stop! Even for a moment. I did and had to throw away the batch, It started to setup and burn on the bottom causing lumps. You don’t want lumps under your wallpaper. So keep on whisking and all of a sudden it will start to thicken and look like wall paper paste. Keep on stirring and remove from heat. Let cool.

Wish I would have taken pictures while doing it. I could not remove the paper all the way, as it was trapped by the baseboard. Pulling the chair-rail back, was the hardest part of the job. Using a 2″ paint brush I applied a thin layer of paste to the wall. Smoothing the paper onto the paste with the side of my hand while positioning it. I did get a wrinkle so pulled the sheet part way off to release it.

After a couple days the paper is still attached to the wall. Wallpaper is not as popular as it used to be, but it was far easier to fix one little sheet than take it all down and repaint. The picture above is of the finished job. No more wrinkles!

(Update) I got a message from Laura from Washington. She said using cornstarch works good for attaching fabric to walls and is easily taken down later, without damaging the wall or door. Here is the site she got her info. from How About Orange. Thanks Laura!


Making Wooden Toy Cars For Charity

Toy VW Bug

The woodworking club I belong to Woodworkers of Whittier (WOW), makes wooden toy cars for charity each year at Christmas time.  They have to be easy and cheap to build, because we make 1500 of them. Each member decides how many they want to make and the club provides the wheels. Guys come up with different designs. Patterns are traded and modified. There are certain ones I like to make. VW Bugs, Sports Cars, Trucks- with variations on each. (click here for a plan of one)

The wood used is 1 1/2″ thick or thicker. Too thin and the axel pegs hit each other. They can be shortened, but 1 1/2″ works great and happens to be the thickness of a 2×4. Common 2×4″ lumber works as long as it is dry. The club gets donations of cut off wood from different places. Nice scrap hardwood can be got free from places that make furniture, mantels, cabinets. We get 2×4 scraps from job sites. The VW above is made of mahogany scraps with a thin piece of oak sandwiched between to give the stripe. Sometimes I use oak, mahogany, maple, walnut , depends on what we get for free. Hardwood is harder to finish though. Cutting out the blanks is easy. Sanding, drilling the holes, adding details, rounding over the edges, final sanding is what takes the time. We are not allowed to put any clear coat finish on the toys because of government bureaucratic BS.

Wooden VW BlanksWood toy sports car


Playing around with the shapes of a car you can get something different. Cut the top off the sports coupe- you get a convertible. A basic truck shape can lead to various models.

Wooden Toy Trucks


Add thin pieces of wood to make the bed. A donated piece of stair handrail makes a tanker truck.

Wooden Toy PickupWooden Toy Trucks


The night arrives when the members bring the finished toys to “wheels and axels” night. The members get busy glueing and tapping the axels through the wheels and into the cars. Makes a big change to see the wheels on.

Wooden tanker truck Wood Pickup Truck Toy


The wheels that the club buys are 1 1/2″ with 1/4″ hole. Like these on Amazon 50 Wood 1-1/2 Inch Toy Wheel W/1/4 Hole You also need to buy axel pegs too.
Drill a 7/32″ hole in car for the axel. Piles of cars arrive at the meeting and work commences with a lot of hammering and things getting done. Each year WOW gives cars and blocks to 22 charities. Some give out a toy with a Christmas meal and others let the kids play with the toys at the school.

It does not have to be done on a large scale. One person can do some  toys and give them away. Even better, an adult teaching a child to a make a toy and the child giving the toy to someone less fortunate. Now you have something special.

Wooden Toy Sports Cars Piles of Wood Cars


Assembling cars for charity