Today I am sharing an easy budget-friendly tutorial on how to create beautiful DIY board and batten. Keep reading for a step by step guide on how you can too!
So excited to share today’s post with you. A little while back I shared my design plans for our home office. One of the main design elements for this room is adding board and batten to the walls. It is an easy budget friendly project that adds a ton of character and visual interest.
There are a few different ways to do DIY board and batten. I personally love a skinny board and batten look. I also love the idea of doing two colors. So we are doing a warm white on the top and a warm grey on the bottom. I am sharing every step of the process below making it really easy for you to achieve in your own home.
DIY Board and Batten Tutorial
“Affiliate links provided for your convenience, please read my disclosure for more information.”
Amounts will vary depending on how big your room is.
We purchased the majority of the items from Home Depot. I highly recommend ordering from this list online and picking it all up in-store or having it delivered. This saves so much time. We had our material delivered right to our door.
- 1/4 in. x 1-11/16 in. x 96 in. Pine Lattice Moulding
- 11/16 in. x 11/16 in. x 96 in. Pine Square Moulding
- Finish Nails
- Spackling Paste
- Paint: We went with Benjamin Moore Simply White and Magnolia Home Yarn
Step One: Choose your Materials
What kind of wood is used for board and batten?
Can you do board and batten on textured walls?
Next, you will need to determine if you need to do a backboard first which is basically just a large flat panel. This will be based on what kind of walls you have. If you have nice smooth walls you will not need to use a backboard. You can just attach the board and batten directly to the wall.
We have slightly textured walls and decided not to use a backboard. I don’t mind having a little texture. If your walls have a lot of texture you might want to consider using a backboard to smooth it out.
To finish off our board and batten we decided to add a cap at the top. This gives you a nice finished look. I went with a 3/4 inch square molding. If you choose a thicker board you will need to modify this.
Step Two: Measure Your Space
How far apart should board and batten be?
Step Three: Attach Board Around Perimeter
Step Four: Attach Battens
After your horizontal boards are attached it is time to attach your vertical battens. This is when you need to go back to your design plan that you created in step two.
You should have already decided exactly where you want to start your battens on each wall and determined the spacing. The easiest way to space out your battens is to create a spacer using scrap wood. This allows you to quickly install the battens without having to measure each time. We decided to have our battens be 11 inches edge to edge so our spacer was exactly 11 inches.
We started either at the center of the window or at the edge of a door depending on the wall. After you cut your batten to size using your miter saw. You will want to make sure that each batten is level and then you will attach it using a nail gun with finish nails. We used about 5 nails per batten evenly spaced.
Step Five: Add Cap
Step Six: Fill Holes & Gaps
Next up is filling all the holes and gaps. To fill those small nail holes you can use spackle leaving a bit extra over the nail holes.
One tip with spackling is to not try and scrap the spackle flush with the surface. It will shrink a little and leave a small divot. Leave extra so that it can be sanded perfectly flush when the spackle is dry.
There may be some gaps in the board and batten. You can take paintable window/trim caulk and fill any gaps in the molding. You do not need to do it on every edge just fill it where needed.
Once the spackle is dry, I recommend using a power hand sander to sand all fill flush.
Step Seven: Prime & Paint
The last and final step is to paint. You will want to first start with a primer. We used Glidden pure white and painted one coat on all the boards and battens.
After priming we started with the top half of the wall first. For this, we went with Benjamin Moore Simply White. Start by painting all the edges, including the ceiling edge with a brush. Since the board and batten haven’t been painted yet you do not have to worry about a clean edge when you get to that part. After edging the walls you can paint the rest with a roller. We did two coats.
Next, we painted the board and batten, doors, and all the trim. We used Magnolia Home Yarn and ordered it online. I could not find it at a store near me. This color is so pretty and even better than I thought it would be.
All the trim received 2 coats of paint using a hand brush and then we used a roller to paint the wall in between the board and batten. This is probably the most time-consuming part of the project.
After a final inspection and a few touch-ups, you are done! Easy and inexpensive DIY board and batten.
This DIY board and batten project added so much character to this space. I have a feeling I will be using this in a couple more rooms! If you have any questions about the tutorial please leave them in the comments.
What to Read Next:
Floor to Ceiling Board and Batten
DIY Shiplap Electric Fireplace & Mantel
Farmhouse Entryway | DIY Console Table
Want to save this for later? Post this DIY Board and Batten to your favorite Pinterest Board!
Lisa Kellett says
Very nice! What a difference it really makes. We have board and batten in a 40ft hallway. I’ve made it a picture gallery on each side. Ours is thicker strips but I really prefer the look of thinner like yours. Thank you for the tutorial! Your home is beautiful.
Hi! The link to the trim paint is broken… is this the “Yarn” color from Joanna Gaines’ Magnolia line?
Thank you for letting me know. Yes, the paint color is Yarn by Magnolia Home. You can purchase directly from the Magnolia Home Website.
What type of sheen did you use for your paint?
We used eggshell for all of it. I would typically switch to semi-gloss for trim but I wanted the color to be the same and it is a small room.
Hi can you link to the chandelier? Thank you 🙂
Here is the link to the chandelier: https://rstyle.me/+dYMDeM0XaX4sLw7HOOejUw
Hi love this remodel, so beautiful! Could you provide a link where the light fixture is from?
Here is the link: https://rstyle.me/+1a1YMyhpdI5mX3erNTBtGA
Hi there, do you have to use a nail gun, or is it possible to use nails and a drill if we align the batten with studs?
You do not have to use a nail gun but I highly recommend it. It would have taken us forever without it.
I love the colors you chose! We just did our kitchen cabinets in Yarn, too! Can you tell me what color/brand your carpet is? I am in desperate need of new carpet and the colors you have are prefect !
Yarn is such a great color! The carpet was here when we moved in so unfortunately I do not have the details for it.
This turned out beautiful! Thanks for the tutorial! I’m assuming since all the battons were evenly spaced they weren’t all attached to studs. Did this cause any issues getting them to hold? Thanks!
Hi Kate! The battens are not attached to studs. They are nice and thin and attach fine just right to the wall, no issues with them holding up.
Is your wall just Sheetrock and studs? I’m trying to find out if I can use the nailer in Sheetrock alone?
Small finish nails can be used without a stud. When installing board and batten it is almost impossible to always land on a stud.
Hi! We are do it yourselfers but have a dilemma. We don’t think we can get the proper spacing in our den, where we have two different sized windows on two different walls. Any suggestions?
Hi Laurie, I would have to see the space, but it doesn’t have to be perfect its all about picking a starting point and a width and going from there. its ok that your windows are different sizes.
Rozzi Greenwood says
Absolutely love what you’ve done here! It looks so lovely 🙂 can I please ask where your ceiling light is from? It’s lovely! Xx
Thank You. Here is the link: https://rstyle.me/+1a1YMyhpdI5mX3erNTBtGA
Hi, did you use 1-1/4” x 16ga nails?
Yes, the finish nails listed in the post are the exact ones we used.
I love this! I’m planning on doing it in a powder room. How long did it take you to complete start to finish?
It would be perfect for a powder room. It took about 2 days to do the trim and another 2 days to paint. This would vary based on the size of your room of course. Hope that helps.
I am obsessed with how this turned out! We are doing some home projects this year & I would love to do this in our guest bedroom. We are doing some kitchen cabinet refinishing next week so maybe this could be our next project after that. Thanks so much for sharing!!!
This turned out so amazing!!! It made such a huge difference in your space. We are making a list of home projects to do this summer and will have to add this to the list. Hopefully, we can do some kitchen cabinet refinishing too! Thanks so much for sharing!
This is beautiful! How did you treat your switch plates in the end? Did you paint them the color of your board and batten or leave them white? I’m not sure what to do for my own project. 💜
We painted them the wall color.
So do you have to use glue in addition to nails if applying to drywall and not on a stud??
No, finish nails will keep them in place.
Do you have a recommendation on what to use for a backboard?