A Step by Step Guide to Board and Batten Installation

You guys, I swear it feels like forever since we talked about starting on the home office makeover! I just checked and we shared our office plans way back in late February so it’s really exciting to be able to share our step by step guide on board and batten installation with you today! Here’s a look at the office before…

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Just to catch you up, we painted the top third of the wall in a gorgeous dark blue by Valpsar called Hematite. I sent a picture to my mom and she said, “it looks like ink on the wall” ha ha. In her defense, it is a pretty moody color but we knew in advance we were going to use a crisp white on the bottom so we weren’t worried at all. Here’s a look at the color we chose…

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One of our goals for 2017 is to incorporate more architectural elements around the house. We spent a few weeks researching decorative wall treatments like wainscoting, shiplap, tile, and paneling. Ultimately, we chose to install board and batten in the office because we felt it best fit the style of the rest of the house.   Even though this was our first time installing board and batten we definitely learned a lot along the way. In fact, we were so happy with the way it looks in the office we’ve also decided to install it in the master bedroom as well. Here’s a look at our experience in case you’re thinking about installing board and batten in your home too…

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The first thing we did was to gather all of our supplies. We used: plywood, molding, wood to create a ledge, table saw, pneumatic nailer, nails, liquid nails, nail filler, nail putty, caulk, caulk gun, level, tape measure, paint primer, paint, plastic paint tray, paint roller, paint brush, sandpaper, palm sander, eye protection, respirator.

We did not want to have to pull up all of the baseboards in order to install the board and batten. For one thing, we did not have that much time. For another, it didn’t make sense to us financially to risk damaging the baseboards for sake of the installation. In an effort to avoid both of those factors, we chose ¼ inch plywood that was sold in 8 foot sheets…

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and cut it into strips using our table saw.

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It definitely helped to cut all of the boards in advance because it was a huge time saver in the end.

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That being said, make sure you’ve carefully measured each of the walls correctly especially around windows and walls that are at weird angles. As always, use caution, care, common sense, and proper body/eye protection when using power tools.

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We used this same process for all of the boards starting with the top horizontal boards first, the battens second and the middle horizontal boards last. We applied Liquid Nails with a caulk gun to the back of each board…

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placed on the wall and measured each side with a level to make sure everything was straight (this is especially important if you have textured walls like we do).

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We then secured each board and batten with nails using a pneumatic nail gun.

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Once the boards and battens were up, we used Liquid Nails, nails and a pneumatic nail gun to attach an additional piece molding and a 1 ¼ inch trim board to the top of the horizontal board creating a ledge.

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Just for reference, the darker piece is the molding, the lighter piece is the trim board and the white seam in the middle is where the seams have been caulked.

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With all of the boards securely in place, it was time to caulk around all the seams with a caulk gun.

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After the seams were caulked, we filled in each nail hole.

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It’s a bit of extra work but in the end it will give the project a cleaner look.

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Once the nail hole putty was completely dry, we started hand sanding each board with 320-grit sandpaper. We quickly realized it was going to take FOREVER to sand by hand so we brought out the palm sander to finish the job. It was so much easier but the dust got everywhere so make you have everything covered with drop cloths if you choose to go this route too.

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I’ll be honest by the time you install the board and battens, caulk each seam, fill in the nail holes and sand down the boards, you’re going to be so ready to get this project finished. You’ll want to run to the garage, pick up your can of paint and get started…but you really need to prime the boards and the battens first. Some wood depending on the type you choose can cause yellowing over time so don’t skip the step, ok?

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Allow the primer to dry overnight, then start painting the boards and battens. We used a combination of roller (make sure you get the right nape for the texture of your walls) and an angled brush (this will help around all those corners) to apply both the primer and the paint. Two coats of Valspar’s Ultra White later, we were high fiving all over the place!

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I know this has been a lot of information so here’s a quick recap…we started out with painting the top third of the office walls in Hematite…

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Then we adding the top board and battens followed by the middle boards…

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We caulked the seams, filled in the nail holes and sanded all the boards and battens.

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A coat of primer, followed by two coats of paint…

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All in all, this project took us about three days to complete not including the time we took to shop for materials. We saved money by cutting our own strips of inexpensive ¼ inch plywood. We saved time by having the boards and battens cut in advance, not having to remove or reattach the baseboards and by having all of our materials ready to go. I know we still have a long way to go before this office is finished but I am so excited about the direction we’re headed!

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Until next time, I’ll see you on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest.

 

Many blessings,

CoCo

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