True Board and Batten a tutorial on installing on textured walls

Inside: DIY board and batten wall

About 15 years ago, a good friend of mine had her third baby.  I went over to her house to bring a meal and found that while her husband was home from work for the week to help his family adjust to the new wee one, he had installed board and batten in his entire downstairs hallway. I must confess, I remember drooling and gushing over the new wall treatment far more than I did over the new baby. I was sold! I wanted a board and batten in every corner of my home and I wanted it yesterday. 

Well, yesterday turned into 15 years later. My husband is the handyman in our family and I am what I like to call the visionary. I make the plan, he executes the plan. And by a plan, I mean, he does all the math and hard stuff and I just tell him what I think will be pretty.

Plans and Concerns

In the past 15 years, I have asked my husband to construct a board and batten wall no less than 398 times. I honestly didn't care where it was in the home, I just simply wanted it. One day, a few weeks ago, on one of our morning walks I brought up my desire for board and batten again. We discussed the where, why and how, and I realized that this was further in the conversation that I had gotten in past years.  My husband explained his apprehensions (he's a perfectionist, I am not) and I realized that he wanted to feel like he knew what he was doing before he took on a large project. Outlets and switches were intimidating and while he's a handy guy, finish work isn't always his specialty.

We talked about the walls. Easy spaces that had more wall and less obstacle and decided to give DIY board and batten a try in our kid's bathroom. We started researching DIY blog posts and I sent him links to tutorials that I found. One afternoon he came back to me and said you know, all those tutorials you sent to me are just batten. There is no board for them.  We have textured walls. You don't want to just slap up boards and then have the texturing underneath them, do you? 

I did not. That seemed sloppy to me. If I was finally going to get the board and batten wall that I wanted, I wanted a TRUE board and batten wall. And so my friends, this little spring refresh is a tutorial for those of you out there who have textured walls and want to install true board and batten and not just batten.

how to install board and batten on textured walls

True Board and Batten Tutorial on Textured Walls

Before we begin, here is a little glimpse at what the kid's bathroom looked like before.  The wall on the left side will be getting the full treatment. The pocket door in the middle divides the two rooms, both rooms will be getting board and batten.

kids bathroom before board and batten wall

When you ask an engineer for help with a project, I have found that in my experience I often times get the design in the form of an auto cad drawing. You laugh but it's super helpful to have a sheet with all the measurements in one place. There are even a numerical key and parts list. Jealous yet? He's taken ladies.

diy board and batten wall

Of course, no tutorial is complete without a side-by-side before and after.

Before and after board and batten wall

How to Make a DIY Board and Batten Wall

Let's get started with this DIY board and batten wall, shall we? 

These are the materials that we used:

Every project is different

For our project, these are the boards and sizes that we used:

backing boards {3 total}
base moulding 11/16" x 5 1/2" {2 total}
mid moulding 11/16" x 2 1/2" {2 total}
top moulding 11/16" x 3 1/2" {2 total}
cap moulding 11/16" x 1 1/2" {2 total}
long battens 11/16" x 2 1/2" {7 total}
short battens 11/16" x 2 1/2" {7 total}

Installing the Boards

What Type of Board is Used for Board and Batten?

Backing boards! You can find them at your local home DIY store.

All of the boards we used were pre-cut. Our long battens were cut down to 42.5" and our short battens were cut down to 12". The boards all had a primer on them and we painted them with a coat of paint the night before we started this project after they were cut.

You will need to start by removing the trim in the area that you are working in. Run an Exacto knife along the caulking and then insert a trim puller to pull away from the molding.

How to make a diy board and batten wall

Working around Outlets

Now that your trim is off, you will remove anything else that will be in your way. We had a towel bar that needed to be removed and a light switch cover that needed to be taken off.

Board and Batten wall prep

Safety first! Because the light switch cover was pulled off, my husband turned off the power to that source. He rigged up a few light sources so that he could see his work as he started to install the boards.

Measure the boards. In the shower area, there was only one board, in the main bathroom area where the sinks are, there were two boards used. You can have Home Depot cut these long boards for you. Our Home Depot saw was broken so we had to do the cutting ourselves at home.

How to install a board and batten wall

He used liquid nails around the edges to help the board adhere to the wall.

Installing a board and batten wall

No one wants to see nail holes where you don't need nail holes, so he measured where the battens would be and nailed the board to the wall in that area. That way, when the battens were installed, you wouldn't see nail holes in the boards. I told you he was a perfectionist. I totally would not have thought of that.

Installing a DIY board and batten wall

The boards were not long enough to cover the full wall. You can see below in the image a little overlap.  Again, this was planned to be covered by a batten so that you won't see any seams in the project.

Board and batten on a texture wall

First up, he installed the new base molding. We took off our original molding because we wanted the base molding to be taller than it was. You can keep your original molding to save on costs, though for us, in this small space, the cost was minimal.

Installing board and batten

Installing the Battens

Now you are ready to install the battens. Our battens on the lower section are 42.5" long.
(from left to right top to bottom)

Measure and hold your first batten. (our battens were spaced 12" apart)
Make sure that your batten is level.
Nail the batten in place.
Continue until you have all of your battens installed.

Board and batten DIY

Always one for a challenge, we also decided to do a little decorative trim. We installed another longboard along the top of the battens. Measured, leveled and nailed that into place.

Board and batten wall DIY

We continued with smaller battens (these are 12" long) just above the long horizontal board that had just been hung.

Board and Batten

A final batten on top capped off the board and batten and covered up the backer board entirely.

Now for the Fun Part

Not really. I don't know too many people that like this step of the process. You fill in your nail holes with wood filler and sand them down to make smooth the area that you just filled. Follow the package directions on your wood filler. While you are waiting for the wood filler to dry you can caulk all of your seams.

We let the caulk dry overnight and taped off the area so that it would be ready for a coat of paint the next day.

I am obsessed with my HomeRight finish max paint sprayer. It is the perfect tool for nearly every paint job. My husband was all like I didn't tape enough for you to be spray painting up in there and I was all like husband, don't you worry. This paint sprayer is a magical unicorn, everything will be fine.

After I worried for like a second that I might just be eating crow a little later, I realized that I had nothing to worry about. The finish max sprays where you want it to with nary any overspray. I promise you, I got right up to the edge of the molding at the top and even with that thin blue tape, I didn't spray white paint on my yellow walls even a little bit. Told you the Finish Max is a magical unicorn.

HomeRight finish max paint sprayer

I used two coats of paint on the pre-primed, pre-painted pieces that we used and because the Finish Max sprays on such light coats of paint, the paint dries super duper fast. So much faster than when I slap it on with a roller or paint brush. I finished painting all the nooks and crannies on the board and batten wall in about an hour and that was with two coats.

using a paint sprayer to paint inside the home

Look how smooth this paint job is. I didn't drip or have any runs. I'm telling you, the HomeRight Finish Max paint sprayer is life changing if you paint. And it barely uses any paint at all. I filled the paint jar up a quarter of the way for this two coat project (you do thin your paint to make it come out of the paint sprayer with ease, so it was nearly half full) and I dumped about half the paint back out again after I was finished.

Painting a board and batten wall

Because we took the towel rack down in the shower section of the bathroom, we added three hooks for the kid's towels.

towel hooks on board and batten

Each kid has a hook so each kids towel can theoretically get hung up on their hook. Theoretically.

towel hooks on board and batten

I just love how this true DIY board and batten wall project turned out. I couldn't imagine skipping the board step with my textured walls. Having the smooth wall behind makes it look professional.

true board and batten tutorial for textured walls

Everything is always more fun with a group, don't you think?  I'm happy to share with you some of the other great spring refresh projects in the Hometalk DIY My Spring home and garden blog hop. Go hop on over and see some of the other projects and get some good spring refresh inspiration!

Love Accent Walls?

A Few Questions Answered:

Can You Install Board and Batten to Ceilings?

I'm sure that you could! You'll need some extra hands and some ladders, but you should be able to finish a ceiling and create a very cool accent up above!

Is Board and Batten Out of Style?

Nope! It's a very classic wall feature that I don't think will ever go out of style. But it's your home! Do what you want and love where you live!

More Fun Home DIY's

This post is sponsored by HomeRight. All opinions are 100% my own.
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1 comment

Unknown said...

Looks awesome and that sprayer seems pretty great. I want board and batten but thought i couldnt have it because of my textured walls. Are the textured walls part of the reason you went so tall with it? How do you feel about seeing the textured wall at the top still? Thanks so much for sharing!

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