Several years ago after purchasing my home I would browse the internet for ideas, and adding wainscoting was one of the first DIY projects I really wanted to do. Fast forward a few short years later and I was finally ready to make things happen. (I’ve been completing home projects at a snail’s pace from day 1… I think I researched having a garden for about two years before I started one.)
I browsed about every tutorial I could find online before I felt as though I was ready to get started. I researched both the style and technique and decided the board and batten style would work best for my house.
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After determining how much wood I would need, I headed to Lowes to pick some up. I used pine 1x4s for the horizontal pieces and 1×3 furring strips for the verticals. Furring strips are inexpensive pieces of wood that are usually used in construction and are not quite as even or stable as normal pieces of wood. If I could turn back time, I would not have gotten furring strips but instead would have opted for regular 1×3 pieces of pine instead. I found them to be a pain to work with and not worth the money savings, which probably equaled out to about $20.
All together, I spent a little more than $40 on the wood for this project. I took it home and laid it on the floor in my entryway for about a week to allow it to acclimate to my house before putting it up on the walls.
I started by putting up my two horizontal boards, the 1×4 pieces of pine. I nailed them with a Central Pneumatic nail gun/crown stapler. I also used my new air compressor, and I loved it! I couldn’t imagine doing trim work without these two tools.
Next, I started measuring and cut my vertical 1×3 furring strips using my miter saw. As I mentioned, these were much more difficult to maneuver and keep straight than the standard pieces of pine so I probably won’t be using them again.
I’m not sure if there’s a proper way to do this but I chose to fill in the top section first then the bottom section. I also knew there would be an overhang where the bottom of the boards hit my baseboards so I cut the ends of each at a 45 degree angle with my miter saw so they could rest on the trim that way.
Before I knew it the wall was up! For the final step of installing the wood, I attached a 1×2 board across the top for a small ledge with some molding where it hit the 1×4. I thought it added a nice touch.
Next, it was time to sparkle and caulk. I had never done either of these things before but I may be an expert now because this was the most time consuming part of the project. There is so much of this that has to be done before the wall can be painted to cover up the nail holes and the seams, but it is worth it because it creates a much more professional looking outcome.
Before I caulked I primed the wall with a Kilz primer to create a consistent base for both the wood and the wall. Then I painted it Sherwin Williams Pure White in semi gloss, the same color as my existing trim.
Selecting the hooks me way longer than it should have, and I ended up ordering two sets before I decided what I wanted. I chose these from Amazon, I thought they were a nice combination of rustic and modern. They come in packs of two and four and I ended up with eight total to stretch across the majority of the wall.
I also got some new pillows from Home Goods and by the time it was all put together I was pretty excited with the way it had turned out!
I also installed a new light fixture during this process and was very happy with the difference it made. I purchased this one from Amazon.
Here is a before and after of the wall:
And, to show how it looks on a daily basis, here it is with the basketball hoop I let my son put up on the door and my laptop bag on a hook.
By the time it was said and done, I spent about $100 total on lumber, paint and the hooks. I think it was worth it. Not only does it look better, but the hooks have made it a more functional space.
I already have the lumber I need to start my next project: a sideboard. This will go on the wall across from the bench. I’m excited to try another new build!
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