Stripping the walls was probably one of the most exhausting and grim tasks. The wallpaper in the bathroom and kitchen was saturated with nicotine, and when we started to steam it there were trickles of brown water running down our arms and onto our feet.
It was also very satisfying, as I believe it was only with the wallpaper gone that the flat began to smell a little fresher. In the bathroom we removed shelves, a sticky towel rail and a toilet roll holder. We also took down a medicine cabinet, which revealed that the wallpaper had originally been a pleasing magnolia shade (this had, over the years, developed into a much deeper mustard).
The kitchen was a mammoth task, as there were so many nooks and crannies to sort out. And that funny little hatch (below) must have been a way of serving dinner directly into the dining room next door. Ah, the 50s.
With raw floors and walls, the place was looking fairly derelict. However, it meant we could finally start thinking about the next, more exciting (and transformative) job - painting!
I couldn't wait to apply that first lick of white emulsion.