Ways to spend a rainy day
One of the things I love about our house is the living room shoji, but as you may already know, this particular decor is incompatible with children or (other) animals.
I gather from ‘a close and reliable source’ that Japanese children are unable to resist the lure of poking fingers, pencils, basically anything through the delicate paper screens. Cats, it seems, are quite partial to shredding them too.
Parents and pet-owners will generally endure occasional ‘mishaps’…
…until it reaches a point when your screen doors no longer actually screen you from anything and something has to be done.
And so begins the whole process of re-papering your shoji. So first you must dampen all the glued seams. If you’re the kind of person who enjoys stripping wallpaper (and there are plenty of words for people like you) then this is for you.
There’s no avoiding it, this is messy. Now is the time to work out which day is paper recycling day.
But after no more than a few hours back-breaking and fingernail-stripping toil, your shoji frames (we had 4 doors and 4 windows) will be picked clean and ready for their refurb.
If you haven’t already destroyed your carpet, now’s your last chance. Grab the glue and spray it liberally around the room, aiming roughly for the frame as and when the fancy takes you.
‘Simply’ lay the paper over the top, and trim and tidy the edges. It’s best you let a loved one brandish the blade while you sit and take pictures.
Now spray the finished papered frames with water (yes, really – to allow the paper to shrink taut), and when it’s all dried, if all has gone according to plan, and my simple instructions, while you yourself will be bent and broken, your screens will have returned to their original splendour.
You should now repair to your fridge, which of course you had the foresight to fill with imported beer. You did, didn’t you?