So this project has taken a little bit of time more than most projects I have done in the past. In this post, I am going to show you how my husband and I installed our board and batten as cheap and as easy as we could. I am loving every day that goes by how pretty it looks. When I decided I wanted to get this late last year I prepped our wall when I painted it so it was ready for the boards. The way I did this is different then getting the actual boards for a true board and batten look. I used MDF Preprimed boards they were 49 inches long and 3 1/2 inches wide.
Installing your Board and Batten
Fill any holes
This is your chance to fill any holes you have in the wall or any dings. We have removed a security system from our wall and had to fix a small hole. We also filled in the dings in the wall from kids and our crazy cat that attacks our walls lol. I swear she gets so wound up and then leaves marks on our walls.
Prep With White Paint
To get started you will want to paint the bottom half of your walls where the white will be. I measure up the wall when I painted it to the point where the top board would lay. Then I masked it off painting the bottom of the wall white and the top the grey-blue. When I pulled the masking tape off the wall I had a line marking where the top board will go. This was left for months. When I painted the wall last fall it started snowing and raining a lot. With MDF Board you don’t want it to get wet or have too much moisture it will ruin the boards completely. So after like 6 months of bad weather we finally had a weekday we could run over and get the boards to start the project.
Our baseboards a the regular thin baseboards. I wanted to beef up our baseboards and also have a flat area to stick the boards on. We decided to buy trim and use it for the baseboards it was .84 cents a foot so not bad. Although we found with the cheaper trim it did fall apart easier if you put the nail in the wrong spot.
Getting regular baseboards can get expensive and right now nothing is wrong with our current ones so getting the trim was the better option for us.If you do get baseboards get ones with a flat top that the boards can easily fit on.
We took the trim and a board to space the baseboard and trim. Next, Nail the boards down with the nail gun keeping it flat. Please use a level to keep everything straight. If you get one board off it can mess up the whole thing so keep that in mind. We were always measuring to make sure it stayed right.
Once we did the baseboards and cut the corners a hundred times we were finally ready for the top boards. We measured out everything on spacing and realized the boards needed to be placed at 49 1/4 inches from the top of our baseboard trim.
Placing the top ledge piece to the side of the top board. After our experience on our test wall in the hall, we realized we needed to place the top ledge piece on first before we stuck it on the wall. Last time we had placed the top piece on the wall then tried to nail the top ledge to it while on the wall. We first found out that the nail gun was too fat to fit in the little space and the nails wouldn’t go all the way down. we were forced to hammer the nails into the board which then scuffed the walls then I was forced to paint the wall to get the marks gone 🙁
The way we put the piece on was one of us held the two boards so the were both flat on the back side that goes to the wall. The other person nailed the ledge down to the side of the top board. Just be careful at this point you don’t do it too close to either edge of the top board piece nails can end up ruining the board then you have to start over 🙁
We had to decide how far away from the corner to start the first board. Once we did that then we measured 16 inches between boards to make this easy we used the level to keep the spacing. Our level was 16 inches long so we would measure the top spacing, middle, and bottom to keep everything 16 inches apart. It just so happens on our last board the level fell and broke 🙁 So now we need to buy a new level. I never thought we would use our level as much as we had. If it was on a required list of tools it would probably be on our top ten list with a hammer and screwdrivers.
How long we cut our boards
So we had previously done board and batten in our hallway. We called it our test wall! We wanted to make sure we could actually do the board and batten without it looking horrible. My husband and I are fairly new to the DIYing. Our last house we really didn’t do much other than things that had to be done. I think we replaced the toilet seal, upgraded some pipes, lawn care, and gutter repair in almost 10 years we lived there. Our new house we are constantly updating to the look and feel to make it more us.
Ok ok so enough on our test wall. After measuring it we had to cut all our boards to just under 49 1/4 inches long.
So once all the boards are up you will need to go and fill in all your nail holes. I used spackle to fill in my holes. I fill in the hole and take a wet sponge and then wiped off the excess.
Ready For Paint
Now you can paint! I painted the baseboard and trim first then painted the top piece and the edge. Then painted in each square around the edge. You will then want to take a mini roller and roll the paint in the middle of each square and paint the verticle boards.
The last thing you will want to do is fill the holes lines etc with caulking this gives it a clean seamless look to the boards. I still need to do this but it will get done you can’t skip this step.
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Things you will need
Your MDF Board or lumber of choice
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