Our Easy DIY Board and Batten Tutorial

A few weeks back, I shared our plan for decorating our guest bath. You may recall it looked like this-

After 3 trips to Home Depot, 4 layers of paint, numerous pieces of sandpaper and an iPod loaded with our favorite 80s hits, it now looks like this-

I have been a fan of board and batten for quite some time. I love the classic, traditional-yet-fresh look. Because our guest bath has no windows, it can get very dark in there. The soft off-white trim color brightens the whole space up tremendously.

My sweet hubby-to-be installed the boards himself, with some direction from his dad. The actual install of the trim boards was pretty easy. It's the caulking, sanding, painting and repeat process that proves to be exhausting.

DIY Board and Batten Instructions
1. Measure the wall and figure out spacing of the boards.
First, we decided that we wanted the top of the board and batten to be 64 inches from the floor, as this is what looked best to us. We then decided to use 5 vertical boards across the longest wall (the space between the door and the shower). Again, there was no science to this; it was just what we thought looked the best. 

*For reference, we used 1x6 for the baseboard and 1x4s for the top piece and horizontal pieces. Justin used 2'' drywall screws to attach each piece. 

2. Gather your supplies and prep the wall.
 *I strongly suggest actually drawing out your design plan and triple checking the measurements.
For us, this meant removing the existing baseboard-

 3. Cut your boards down to size. Home Depot will do this for you for no extra charge
We used primed MDF, as it's easy to work with, affordable and perfectly smooth. MDF can retain moisture though, so if you use this in a bathroom like we did, you will want to generously caulk around each side. 
4. Attach your trim boards. Start with the baseboard first. You will want to ensure that you attach the trim boards to studs as well.

We installed our boards in the following order: baseboard first, then top horizontal piece, finally adding the vertical boards.

5. Caulk nail holes and around all sides of trim.
6. Paint. Paint. Paint some more. It took us 4 coats of semi-gloss paint to cover all nail holes perfectly, We caulked and sanded between each coat of paint. Although this is the part that took the longest, it was well worth it. Our finished look is just about flawless.

We used my favorite paint in semi-glass for the board and batten, and in satin for the wall.

7. Step back and marvel at your work.

Next up is tiling the floor, replacing the faucets and adding accessories and art. We are just about sold on using the hardwood-look ceramic tile in a deep mocha color. I think it's going to look great in here.

This makes me want to put additional trim in every room in the house!
best, Suzanne