DIY Projects | Room Makeovers | Room Projects

Board and Batten, Solo in Just 3 Days

Last week I gave you a sneak peak at the architectural detail I added to our forgotten living room.  This week I am delivering on my promise to tell you how I managed to get it done in just three days.  Yep!  You read that right, board and batten in just 3 days.  All.By.Myself.  Oh and a sneak peak of my progress this week.

Living room makeover, One Room Challenge week 1

Welcome to week 4 of the One Room Challenge organized and hosted by Linda at Calling it Home and media partner House Beautiful.  For the first time in the history of the One Room Challenge, the reveal week has been extended by an extra week.  So many of the participants are living in areas that have been impacted by fires and hurricanes that Linda has graciously extended our timeline.  Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone that is struggling to recover from the devastating events of the past couple of months!!

If you are new to Pearl Street Designs you can learn all about me and my dream job here and if you are catching up on the One Room Challenge here is where you can find Week 1Week 2, and Week 3.

Now, on to what you came here for…how to do board and batten, solo, in just 3 days.  Our walls are smooth so I didn’t need to add board to the wall.  If yours aren’t smooth there are tons of tutorials on Pinterest that show you how to put the board on first.

Eclectic living room makeover a cozy, inviting place to be in.


  • Furring strips: sizes 1×2, 1×3, and 1×4
  • stud finder
  • Mitre saw
  • portable air compressor
  • Air nailer
  • 2 1/2″ brad nails
  • Tape measure
  • Level
  • 90 degree square for marking the wood for cutting
  • paintable caulk

Skill level: Beginner (this was my first time doing something like this)

My hubby had all the tools needed for this and didn’t mind me using them…he is a keeper.

Prepping for the project…

Prior to starting this project, I measured the entire space and calculated how much of each type of wood I would need.

  • Measure the entire area around the baseboard in inches, divide it by twelve to get how many feet of wood you will need.
  • Most lengths of wood come in 8 feet so divide how many feet you have by 8 and that will tell you how many pieces of wood you will need to do your project.
  • Alway round up and even add an extra board to allow for mistakes…just in case.

Note:  This will work for the baseboard and top rail of your batten, but not for the vertical boards (ask me how I know this).  You will have to know the length of your vertical boards and how many of them you will need so that you can figure how many you can get from each piece of wood.  If not you will end up going back to get more wood, or having to use smaller pieces and cutting them to a 45 degree angle and fitting them together like I did.

  • I marked where each stud was in the wall and drew a line using the level around the entire room so that I would know where the bottom of my top rail of batten would be placed.  Of course I forgot to take a picture of that.
  • I also painted the top half of my wall because it was going to be a different color from the batten.

Applying board and batten to the wall…

I used the 1×4 for my baseboard, the 1×3 for the top rail, and the 1×2 for the vertical boards.

Note: Those sizes are not true to the actual size of the wood, so make sure you measure your pieces to know exactly what size they are.

  • Instead of reinventing the wheel, I pulled off each piece of existing baseboard and used it as a template to cut my new baseboard and the top rail of the batten since they were going to be the same length and then nailed them to the wall using the brad nailer.

Easy diy board and batten in just 3 days

Easy diy board and batten in just 3 days

  • I used plain boards, not detailed molding (hooray for choosing the easy way).  Cutting the 45 degree angles for the corners was super easy once I watched a youtube video on how to do it.  After repositioning my saw for the 4th time, I realized I could just flip my piece of wood over to cut the opposite end 45 degree angle and not have to move the saw at all!!  It was really all about which side of the wood I wanted to have showing.

Note: Add an extra 3/4 of an inch in length on your board when cutting a 45 degree angle or it will end up too short.  Ask me how I know this and how many times it took me to figure that out.  Hey, I am a beginner you know!  It’s okay, you can laugh.  I am now, although I was cursing when it happened.  Hence the need for that extra board…wink, wink.

  • I decided to put the vertical boards on the studs, I didn’t want to have to use glue and I certainly didn’t want them coming off.  So for the most part, my vertical boards are 16 inches apart.  Give or take when I ran into outlets.  Outlets are attached to studs in a wall and depending on what side they were put on, well….you get the picture.
  • Due to the true size of the boards, I gained about an extra 1/2 inch between the baseboard and the top rail…grrrrr!  This was not a good thing.  I ran out of full pieces of wood and had to use the smaller pieces and fit them together.  At least I didn’t waste a lot of the 1×2, I used almost all of it.

Easy diy board and batten in just 3 days

Easy diy board and batten in just 3 days

Easy diy board and batten in just 3 days

  • After all the boards were in place, I caulked EVERY.  SINGLE.  INCH. of the batten.  Yep, all of it.  It gives it a finished look and covers up any mistakes that may have been made (and there were a few let me tell ya)
  • I painted all the batten first with Kilz to make sure the wood grain wouldn’t bleed through.  PLEASE DO NOT skip this step, you will thank me later!

Board and Batten, Solo in Just 3 Days

Board and Batten, Solo in Just 3 Days

My timeline for installing board and batten…

  • Friday – baseboard and top rail
  • Saturday – vertical boards and caulking
  • Sunday – painting

3 days….by myself…my carpel tunnel has come back full force in my right hand from all of that caulking.

I love this new detail in our forgotten living room.  Would I do anything different?  I would definitely use a different type of wood, or at least have been more picky about the boards I picked out.  Furring strips are made of super soft wood.  It splits easily if you aren’t careful and has furry spots (I am sure that isn’t why they are called furring strips) that need sanded if you get any with them on it.  But, you live and learn!

Progress update…

The carpet has been cleaned and is all dry.  We weren’t allowed to walk on it (still aren’t) with shoes on in the hopes that those horrible spots will not come back.

I have finished the new console for under the TV.

I have my art all picked out for the walls.  Although you never know if I might add something else if I walk by it in the house and think it will look good in there.  I haven’t put any of it up yet.  Does anyone else have a paralyzing fear of hanging decor on a freshly painted wall?  It is really hard to get past, hahaha!

ORC week 4 sneak peak

The new rug arrived today!!!!!!!  It truly ties the entire space together…it’s gorgeous…I am in rug love…can you tell?  The colors are just amazing.  Here is a sneak peak…

ORC Week 4 Sneak Peak

Items are getting checked off the list…not much left to do!!

  • paint the trim and doors white
  • paint the walls and add an architectural detail to the room
  • fix the carpet at the entry and replace tiles
  • clean the carpet
  • turn an old cedar chest into a cushioned bench
  • create a new media console for under the TV
  • create and purchase new wall art
  • replace vertical blind with new updated plantation style blind
  • source or make new throw pillows
  • refinish side table, and current console table
  • refurbish 2 chairs or reupholster 1 chair
  • purchase an area rug to tie the whole space together
  • pull it all together in a room with way too many openings and doors

You can visit all of the participants of the One Room Challenge at the links below.  There are some incredible spaces coming together!!

Featured Designers

Guest Designers

Until next time,





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      1. How much did this project cost? I think I am inspired to do my short hallway. The board and batten looks so sharp! Great job!

        1. Hi Lindsay! I’m going to say it was under $150 because I used furring strips. I took all my measurements, did my math and then went on the Lowe’s website and priced it all out before I went to buy everything. Of course at today’s prices it may be more, but a short hallway shouldn’t hurt your pocket too badly!

  1. Great job with your board and batten! I totally skipped the priming step and yeah, I’m kicking myself for that one. I did use primed boards though, but my wall color was pretty dark so Kilz would have been a good idea.

    1. Thank you Sara!! In our room addition the window casings are unfinished wood too and I didn’t use Kilz first and the knots are bleeding through, ugh…a redo project for later. I wasn’t about to let that happen in here! Primed boards would have made my life a lot easier!! Thanks so much for stopping by!!

  2. Girl!!!!! Pour yourself an extra soda or whatever your beverage of choice is right now. You did an amazing job.

    That rug has me all heart-eyed!!!!

    1. Thanks girlfriend!!! It feels good to have done it all myself!! I am in rug love and just want to lay on it all day 😉

  3. Susanne – I am beyond impressed. That is an amazing job, beautifully done. You are much braver than I am! And thank you of showing the steps and providing extra hints and helpful info. This has been fun to watch and I am looking forward to the future posts!

  4. I love board and batten so much. It was one of my first DIY projects that gave me confidence to do bigger things. I used furring strips for mine too. Haha!

    1. then I am in good company and must be destined for bigger things, like you my friend!! Were any of yours “furry’? it was the weirdest thing ever!!

  5. get it girl! this is a BIG project and you killed it!

  6. Wow! Kuddos to you for tackling that all by yourself! I am pretty sure I would have given up. It turned out great and I LOVE that rug!

    1. Thanks Mary!!! It wasn’t bad and didn’t take as long as most tutorials say…plan your work and all that jazz 😉 I am loving this rug too, going to have to order one for the family room!!

  7. This room is looking so nice with those boards! It definitely took a lot of work but it’s going to pay off! Love that new rug. Can’t wait to see next week’s report 🙂

    1. Hahaha!!! There were a couple of times I could have used another set of arms, but all in all, it wasn’t too bad 🙂

  8. Great job!! Love how the room is so current now! And LOVE the color. Oh…and don’t get me started on that rug! You know I have all the heart eyes! Looking good! XO ~~ Susie from The Chelsea Project

  9. You did a great job! I love how it updated the space and I kinda adore your rug too! I think we have the same one… except my is round. 🙂 We have have to do a round up of the rug in different rooms! LOL I can’t wait to see your finished space- it is going to be fabulous!

    1. You are so right Joy! We should do a roundup, lol!! I am now trying to find one to love for the family room 😉 The round rugs look so awesome, I wish I could use one somewhere!!

  10. Wow your board and batten looks amazing! You did a great job, especially all on your own. Well done. I love seeing the other details of the room coming together too -great rug.

    1. Thanks Dannyelle!! The board and batten makes such a statement in the room and it is so much lighter in there now. I am excited to finish up!

  11. I love the look of board and batten and yours looks amazing! I also LOVE that rug! I can’t wait to see more of it!!

  12. I’m still catching up on the Fall 2017 Challenge and am going through your project week by week because it is a project that tackles an issue a lot of us have – a neglected formal living room and how to redo on a very limited (and realistic) budget). I LOVE your rug – it is gorgeous! There are so many colors in it that you could pick out a multitude of various accent colors for throw pillows and accessories throughout the seasons to change our your room. I discovered that just putting different cushion covers on my throw pillows for fall, spring/summer, winter/Christmas makes a big difference in my mood. I get mine at H&M online, believe it or not. I had no idea they had a home division but they do, and they have great low cost options and offering varying sizes of throw pillow covers! The board and batten also adds so much to the room. You don’t have to answer this – just wondering if there are hardwoods hiding under your living room carpet. It would depend upon the age of the home and the area it was built; where I live in a city in SE Wisconsin, the vast majority of homes were built in the 1950s-through mid 1960s with 11 course basements and have hardwood floors in all areas except the kitchen and bathroom (usually 3 bedroom/1 bath homes put up during the post WWII/Korean War building boom). But I know there are regional variations of building practices, and some homes were only designed with carpeting in mind; after a certain point, hardwoods became too expensive for “builder grade” and aren’t used here anymore for a standard new build, either.

    1. Hi Jan! Sadly there are not hardwoods under the carpet. Our home is a modular and was put together in 1999. We moved into when it was just 3 years old. We have since added a 900 sq. ft family room, which is why this room is now the “formal” living room. We are hoping to run the same bamboo flooring in here and the dining room and kitchen that is in between the two living areas. I love changing out my pillow covers for the seasons too! And I am learning how to use my sewing machine and am planning on making some of my own. Thank you so much for visiting my blog and checking out my ORC!!

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