Hi, I'm in my first home, and I'm completely clueless. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. We have a 1930's home with plaster walls (currently wallpapered) that are cracking and bowed around the windows and corners of the rooms. The rest of the walls appear to be sound. The bowing is about 1/2 inch and does not appear to be 'loose' at all. It seems solid. I'm certain that the house is stable and done settling.
The cracks range from hairline to about an 1/8 inch, but the plaster is crumbling from around the cracks and bowed out area and leaves gaps about an inch wide in some places. I wanted to repaper the walls since the paper is old, discolored, and shows all of the cracks anyway, but I'd also like to repair the bowing and cracks too. Ideally, I'd love to ditch the paper altogether, but I'm not sure I'm talented enough to have only a paint and primer cover!!
Would I be able to gently sand down the bowed out area, or would this cause too much crumbling? Can I just fill in the cracks with joint compound, sand, and repaper, or is it not that simple? Any advice??