Removing Window Decals removing really old window decals stuck to the window

Removing Window Decals

Many home makeovers and renovations involve adding things to a home to give it character or function. I’ve spent the last six months removing things from our Colonial Farmhouse. Stencils, wallpaper and window decals have been the worst offenders. Removing these items has let the home’s existing character shine through.

Let’s talk about the fun job of removing window decals.

The windows on our living room fireplace wall were adorned with colorful, flowery window decals.

Removing Window Decals removing really old window decals stuck to the window

Truthfully, I didn’t loathe these window decals.

There were so many other things in this home that were much more offensive to the eyes.

I also knew there would be a tradeoff when I removed the window decals because they were obscuring some over-painting and poorly applied window glazing on the outside of the windows. I’m also reasonably certain it would be extremely difficult to clean between the storm window and the regular window.

Resigning myself to the fact that removing the window decals might draw attention to other problems, I finally decided to go for it.

Removing Window Decals removing really old window decals stuck to the window

This is the part of the story where no good deed goes unpunished.

There are modern window decals that come off easily without leaving marks on your windows.

These were not modern window decals. They were probably 20-year-old window decals. At least. Let’s just call them prehistoric.

They had fused to the window in an impressive fashion.

I attacked them with my bare hands like any civilized person does. I scraped them with a razor blade. I tried Goo-Gone, regular cleaning spray and finally settled on wallpaper remover to loosen up the adhesive on those suckers.

Removing Window Decals removing really old window decals stuck to the window

Just as I thought, the window decals were hiding some imperfections common with old windows.

There was definitely over-glazing and sloppily applied paint on the outside of the window.

The window to the left of the fireplace also seems prone to condensation.

For your viewing pleasure all of these issues are captured in the below photo.

Removing Window Decals removing really old window decals stuck to the window

Overall, I know removing the window decals was the right decision.

The imperfections are one of those things that I will notice, but guests never will.

Especially because I’ll be distracting them with my jazz hands.

So don’t tell them! This is between you, me and the internet.

Removing Window Decals removing really old window decals stuck to the window

There are still additional window decals to remove in our living room and music room.

Of course there are! I can’t catch a break.

The two sets of french doors leading to our sunporch have floral decals covering each window pane. You can see a glimpse of that in the below photo.

I have not removed the window decals on the french doors yet because we have no window treatments and the decals serve a functional purpose of obscuring the view into our home at night. I’m sure my neighbors are grateful.

My plan is to eventually remove the floral window decals and replace them with something that mimics frosted glass. I just need to work up the energy to remove and replace decals on 50 individual panes of glass. Anyone want to help?

Removing Window Decals removing really old window decals stuck to the window

This is one of those projects that I’m happy I’m undertook, but by no means did it have a perfect outcome.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m still calling it a win because that’s the bubble I live in to keep myself going with these projects. Ha!

P.S. Perhaps one day I will learn how to take photos of these windows without blowing out the details, but for now, this is the best you get!

Room Sources: 

Rug – Mine is 8×10

Sofa (Wrote my review after living with it for awhile here.)

Grey Chairs – They recline!

Coffee Table (A DIY. Wrote about it here.)

Ash Bucket (Thrifted. Wrote about it here.)

Coffee Table Tray (A DIY. Wrote about it here.)

Ruby Glass Chandelier (Wrote about it here.)

Paint is by Behr. Trim is Bit of Sugar. Walls are Arcade White.

Do you know what is more fun that removing window decals? Reading more blog posts. 

The best Whiskey Cake that doesn’t taste like whiskey.

Visiting Ireland: St. Patrick’s Day

Teaching Kids How to Type – I need to get back on this one after seeing my kids use their school-issued Chromebooks.



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  • Donna Scruggs Schultz

    I am so happy I found your blog a few months ago. (When I was searching for a Dave’s Killer Bread knockoff.) Please tell me more about your gray recliners. Those would work in my home, and I am looking for one. It seems they recline from being pushed by by your body force and not a mechanical handle. We had one like that before, and it failed to stay back when you reclined. So, now The Big Guy only wants a recliner with a handle. He is a trim 6′ 4″ and loves to recline. How are they holding up and do they stay back when reclined?
    Thanks so much for an enjoyable blog!

    • annisa

      I haven’t talked about the recliners because they aren’t the world’s greatest quality. I love how they look and the price was out-of-this-world, but the quality reflects the price. The stitching seems totally fine, they just don’t feel super sturdy. I think they are my “looks good while I find something to thrift” pieces.

      Here’s the link.

      Now, THIS ONE looks almost the same, but is twice the price and i know it would be much, much better quality.

      Back to my recliners: They do push back with your hands on the arms. My husband is 6-ft. and I’m 5’9″. So, they are comfortable to sit and read in or watch a movie for our height, but if you were 6’4″, it would be trickier to take a nap in. They have gotten softer to sit in, in terms of breaking in, in the few months that I’ve gotten them. However, they don’t look like they’ve been broken in. Does that make sense? I actually appreciate that. Ha!

    • annisa

      Donna, P.S. Thank you for reading the blog! Interacting with folks here is the best part of my day. I love hearing about all the projects and recipes people are knocking out in their own homes. I get so many ideas from everyone. Thank you!

  • Sandy Smith

    It is a lot of hard work but I know you will enjoy the end results. I don’t know why people want to cover up windows. The purpose of them is to give you light and bring the outside in. I understand your reasoning of the French doors. I’m sure you’ll come up with a better solution to cover them so people can’t see in. Keep on scraping!

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