You are currently viewing Inexpensive Board and Batten Accent Wall with Easy Installation

Are you looking for ideas to add architectural interest in your home? Undoubtedly I’ve been wanting to add an accent wall in my master bedroom for a long time. Not only is this board and batten accent wall easy to install, but it’s also easy on the budget.

Today I’m excited to share tips on how to install a board and batten accent wall that costs less than $50! It’s easy enough that my hubby and I had this beauty installed in just one day!

And for a more traditional look check out our cozy home office library with picture frame moulding.

In addition for more ideas to add value to your home, take a look at 10 Sensational Home Improvement Ideas on a Budget.

If you’d like to see this wall transformation take place from beginning to end, check out the video!  

You will see this transformation in a sped up process as I guide you through each of the steps. 

Would you like to see more of the DIY projects in this master bedroom makeover? Then take a look at these post:

Supplies Needed

A few supplies are needed to easily install this board and batten accent wall.

  1. Visual blueprint of design to aid during installation
  2. Precut and lightly sanded boards
  3. Large and small level (A small one is fine, but a larger one is helpful for the vertical boards.)
  4. Pneumatic brad nailer
  5. Box of 2″ brads
  6. Pencil.We also used a white pencil to mark on the dark navy wall.
  7. Speed square
  8. Measuring tape
  9. Tube of liquid nails construction adhesive
  10. Caulk
  11. Caulk gun (you can buy these for a couple dollars but it’s definitely worth spending a little more and getting one that works better. In my experience, you can get a decent one for $10-$15. It will make caulking SO much easier!)

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Prep Accent Wall

We opted to paint the wall before the board and batten accent wall was installed. It was much easier to paint the entire wall rather than to individually paint inside each of the frames created by the design.

Ultimately I chose to use Hale Navy by Benjamin Moore. However I opted to have it mixed as a custom color at The Home Depot. What can I say? Behr paint has great coverage at a fraction of the cost.

In addition, the remaining walls in the room were painted white to allow this accent wall to really be the feature in our room.

For more painting tips, see painting a room fast and with less mess.

If you love a dark wall, then check out this dark and moody man cave and this moody home office library.

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Tips for Painting Existing Base Boards

Pro Tip:

  1. First, take a long drywall taping knife and carefully slide it under the baseboard.
  2. Then carefully paint along the edge of the knife and baseboard. Avoid loading the brush with too much paint to prevent any bleeding.
  3. Last, slowly drag the brush over the edge again to remove any excess paint. Then finish painting the remaining baseboard.

Again this tip does take a little bit of time but it does keep the flooring clean!

Plan the Board and Batten Accent Wall Design

Graph paper layout of board and batten accent wall.

Now for the fun part! As a visual person it’s helpful for me to map things like this out. This is easy to do with a simple piece of graph paper and dimensions of the wall. 

Each board in the design are 4″ wide. So I cut several strips of paper that would be equivalent to this measurement on my chart. Subsequently I was able to move them around and play with the design of the accent wall before committing to anything.  

Such a helpful step!

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Let us introduce ourselves, we’re Michelle and Steph, a mom and daughter team who love to DIY and decorate our homes.

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Shop for Supplies

MDF board cut into 4" wide pieces at The Home Depot.

Off to The Home Depot to buy supplies!

I love getting down and dirty with all of our DIY projects.

With the help of a kind Home Depot employee I had a 4′ x 8′ x 1/2″ piece of MDF board cut into 4″ strips.

Easy peasy!

Getting the Board and Batten Materials Home

Board and Batten accent wall supplies loaded in SUV.

If only getting these supplies home were as easy!

Along with the cut MDF strips, I purchased a 16′ primed baseboard for the top border of the design.   

Board and Batten accent wall supplies loaded in SUV.

Clearly it’s apparent I use our SUV like a truck and haul everything…but fitting a 16′ board inside was a bit tricky!

Luckily the baseboard was pliable so I was able to bend it down into the back of the SUV while letting the other end stick out the front passenger window a little.  

(Another kind Home Depot employee supplied me with a little rope to tie the end of the wood onto the side mirror. In small talk I mentioned he’d probably seen people try to do crazier things before…and he agreed! As for me, I think he had a good laugh at my expense.)  

In spite of this I’m glad the wood was pliable and didn’t break as I crammed it in there! Oh the things I do…the things I do! 

Prep Word for Board and Batten Accent Wall

Woman uses a palm sander to smooth out the rough edges prior to installation of the Board and Batten accent wall.

Use a palm sander to remove any rough areas along the cut edges of the pieces of MDF.

Not only will this make your finished board and batten wall look more professional, but it will make it easier to keep clean.

Rough edges are dust magnets!

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Installing Board and Batten Accent Wall

supplies needed

Gather all the supplies needed, it’s time to get this accent wall installed!

Install Top Horizontal Board

A miter saw is used to cut the board that will be the header for the board and batten wall.

Measure the length of the wall.

Cut the craftsman baseboard to size and install.

We used a craftsman baseboard for the top horizontal board for our accent wall.

This was the header board will not have any seams.

We applied liquid nails to the backside of each board before nailing them into place.

The baseboard was nailed into position at the top of the wall flush to the ceiling. 

Install Vertical Boards

Man installs vertical boards to the navy blue accent wall with a brad nailer, using a level to make sure it's plum.

After the header border of the design is installed, proceed to install all the vertical boards. 

First place the board into position for a dry fit.

Then apply the Liquid Nails adhesive.  

Place the board onto the wall in the designated place.

Next use a level to ensure the board is aligned and plumb.

At that point, secure into place with brads.

We began on the far right wall adjacent to the bay window and worked our way toward the opposite wall.

Installed vertical boards for the board and batten accent wall.

Once the first board has been secured to the wall, use the measuring tape and mark where the next board will be installed.

Be sure to mark the wall near the base board at the bottom and the top of the wall.

Continue to install each vertical board.

Carefully measure where the next board will be installed.

Mark the wall.

Dry fit into place.

Apply adhesive.

Place back into position.

Use the level to ensure the board is plumb and secure with brads.

Install Horizontal Boards

Now install the first horizontal row.

Man measures and marks where the horizontal boards will be placed on the wall with a white pencil.

Measure up from the floor and place a mark on the wall to the desired height.

Next, measure the horizontal distance between the vertical boards and cut a piece to fit.  

Repeat this step for all horizontal boards on the first row.

To speed up the process, we measured and cut all the horizontal boards at the same time.

Once again after the board has been fit to size, apply the adhesive, position on the wall and secure into place.

Board and battens installed on the accent wall.

Follow this step for the upper row.

To do this measure down from the ceiling to the desired height and marked the wall.

PRO TIP: Take the time to dry fit each piece before applying the adhesive and placing on the wall.

Some boards may need to be trimmed slightly even though they were measured and cut carefully.  

Finish Work

MDF board placed on a navy blue accent wall into a board and batten pattern.

Fill in all of the nail holes and seams with wood filler.

Naturally, the less filler you apply the easier the next step will be.

To apply, take a small amount of wood filler and push it into the hole.

Scrape off any excess filler with the edge of the knife. 

Allow the filler to completely dry, then lightly sand each spot to make sure it’s smooth.

Woman caulks each section of board and batten accent wall.

Time to caulk!

Our board and batten accent wall is almost finished!

Caulk around the inside of each of the shapes you’ve created with your design. 

Every place a board meets to the wall could be caulked. 

(A little known fact about me: I like to caulk. Weird I know! Personally, I think it’s the perfectionist in me. Caulking adds a neat professional look to any project.) 

Check out my pro-tips for caulking here.

Last but not least, paint the boards!

The easiest method I’ve found is to take a paint brush and first paint over the caulk in a section then brush the boards.

PRO TIP: To get an extra crisp paint line at the top of the wall where it meets the ceiling, I used a little trick I talked about in another tutorial.  

This trick is especially helpful when painting a line at the edge of the wall and a textured ceiling!

Apply painters tape along the ceiling.

Next brush on one coat of the ceiling paint.

Let dry,

Then paint the navy blue accent wall color.

If there is any bleed through with the tape it will be with the ceiling color, so you get a perfect crisp line at the ceiling even if it’s textured.

Completed Board and Batten Accent Wall

Now you can take a step back and enjoy your new accent wall!

Finished board and batten accent wall

This project actually comes together pretty quickly!

If you start with a good visual blueprint of your design and measure and mark as you work, it goes pretty smoothly! 

My Hubby and I had this installed start to finish in an afternoon.

More time was spent with all the finish work: filling in all the nail holes, sanding, caulking and painting to create the finished look.

Complete board and batten accent wall

Additionally we upgraded the electrical outlets to a dark color with USB ports.

Clearly this helps camouflage them.

Looking for more inspiration for an accent wall in your home?!

Take a look at these ideas:

Styled master bedroom with a navy blue board and batten accent wall.

I love the character and cozy feel this board and batten accent wall adds to my bedroom.

Styled master bedroom with a navy blue board and batten accent wall.

If this a project you’d like to try in your home?

We hope you found some inspiration for your home today.

Please share your tips and ideas with us.

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PInterest image of a navy blue board and batten accent wall with coastal photography and decor.

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