We are ALL about doing victory dances over finished room makeovers, but you know what we love even more? Celebrating progress! The progress is messy, but my gosh, it’s worth it. And really, it usually has to get worse before it gets better. Plus, there’s something satisfying about stepping back and saying, “Wow. I made this with my own two hands!” We still have a long way to go in our master bedroom refresh, but we are ALL about celebrating this traditional grid molding focal wall today!
The term “contractor and designer” doesn’t even apply to Robert and me because we’re not licensed. The only thing we know for sure is that we’re in love with it! In my mind, the wall behind our bed had to have some form of hefty molding, but I wanted it to be a little more “fancy classic” than the basic grid. This molding is just what I was looking for.
Focal Wall Grid Molding Using Traditional Methods: Do It Yourself:
- 1/2′′x4x8′ MDF panel sheets
- Molding with finger-jointed panel caps
- TABLE WHEEL.
- A miter saw was used.
- Adhesive for construction
- Finishing nailer with cordless operation
- Measure with a tape measure (we prefer this laser measuring tool)
- The carpenter’s square
- First things first: safety glasses and a mask.
- Gun and caulk for sealing joints
- Putty with wood filling
- a blade of some sort
- Sandpaper with a medium/fine grain.
You can see by his expression that he’s already starting to feel the pressure of his new position. There is nothing wrong with you if you feel this way before undertaking a large-scale endeavour.
Determine how many rows and columns of squares/rectangles you want on your wall by first measuring the entire wall (which will in turn determine the size of the squares).
- The width of your boards should be marked on an MDF panel sheet, and a piece of that width should be cut out. For the grid design on your wall, you’ll use this piece as a spacer/template. 3 1/2′′ wide is the width we made ours.
- The baseboard and crown moulding were initially removed from the wall, and an 8-inch header board and a 3-1/2-inch footer board were installed in their place.
- Before cutting off your MDF boards using a table saw, make sure you’ve drawn out your wall with your grid design and are satisfied with the results. To mark our cuts, we traced our sheets using the same spacer template.
- Attaching the vertical boards was the next step after we cut all of our MDF boards (about 14).
- On begin, apply a thin line of construction glue to one side of a vertical piece of plywood or plyboard.
- Placing the board over the spot on the wall where you pencilled in your design.
- Finish nailing the board to the wall is the final step.
- Repeat this process for each of your vertical boards.
- Once the vertical boards are all in place, take an accurate measurement of the distance between each one before cutting the horizontal boards to the appropriate lengths.
- Nail them in place with your finish nails in the same manner as before, using construction adhesive and finishing nails.
- Wood fill any holes, caulk, prime, and paint at this time if you like a less formal Craftsman style moulding. To make things a little more interesting, however, we had to go all out.
- The mitre saw can be used to cut finger-joint moulding at a 45-degree angle from your MDF boards.
- Use a finish nailer to fix the piece after adhering construction glue to the back.
- Make a million copies of those steps. I’m kidding, but it’s likely to reach that many people.
- That laborious last-minute detail work pays off in the end in a BIG way.
- Nail your crown moulding and quarter round moulding to the top of your header and baseboard once you’ve finished installing your finger-joint moulding.
- Fill up all of your nail holes with wood filler, then sand them smooth.
- Caulk all holes, cracks, and crevices and allow them to dry.
- ‘Then, apply primer and paint.”
Wood filling, caulking, priming, and painting are still a few jobs away, but we can already see how this area will look when it’s done. What a wonderful design! Finally, I can’t wait to show you the color of paint we’ll use. I’m sure you’ll be surprised, but I’m confident it will be worth it. I know what I’m doing. The blueprint I provided last week and some of my favorite master bedroom inspirations are available here if you’d like to follow our progress.
With the help of some suggestions and tricks, I’ll show you how we made this accent wall in our guest room. My favorite thing about accent walls is that I’ve wanted to do them since we initially designed this house. Still, I couldn’t decide what kind of pattern to use on this wall, so I sketched out at least 12 different designs before making my final decision. After putting up the boards, filling the gaps, and sanding, we spent another night painting the surface.
These instructions can be used for any pattern of wall paneling and are not limited to my design. It doesn’t matter what kind of paneling you want to do: square, straight board, batten, or something altogether different. The essential “how-to” instructions are the same.
- My goal was to create a wall pattern that could be used in a variety of space setups while yet remaining distinctive and simple. A dozen iterations later, I settled on this one as my favourite.
- Make a wall layout before you start putting on the paint. Here’s where things became tough. Math and patience are required. For our perimeter trim, we chose to go first. Then, the longest diagonal on the left, and so on. Afterwards, the upper diagonal portion (starting with the longest piece first). Finally, we came to the right-hand side horizontal parts (where we also had to work around an outlet).
- Prepare the wall by chopping and pinning boards to the studs. Make use of both construction adhesive and a fastener to attach the boards together (either screws or nails, depending on how you want to do it). You should begin with the outer edge and work your way inward. Make any necessary adjustments to the measurements as you go along by cutting as you go. For this reason, we didn’t want to nail or screw the boards directly to the studs; instead, we predrilled holes in the boards and used screws that were only slightly thicker than both the board and the drywall combined. It took us about a day for the adhesive to dry before we could remove the screws and fill the holes. This allowed us to keep our outside wall structure intact.)
- Use a coarser sandpaper to smooth out any blemishes.
Use a putty knife to apply wood filler to all nail holes and seams between boards.
- Run a thin line of caulk down each joint where the board meets the wall, then smooth it out with your finger. If your finger gets wet, you can use a damp towel to clean it up
- Everything that has been touched by the wood filler should be sanded. If you don’t get this as smooth as possible, the paint will show through.
- Paint. Prior to painting, you need either utilise pre-primed boards or prime them. With an angled paintbrush for the edges and a microfiber roller for everything else, I finished painting.
AN OCCASIONAL THOUGHT:
- Consider using a board and batten style or a plain grid wall instead because the cuts are all 90 degrees and should be easy to work with.
- If you can, start by painting the wall. How about it? I didn’t since I hadn’t yet decided on my final colour when we started putting up the boards. But it would have been so much faster if the first coat of paint had been applied to the wall.
- Instead of incorporating outlets and other features into the design, I highly encourage finding ways to “work around” them. It’s simply more convenient. There is nothing wrong with cutting them, but for me it only makes them stand out even more.
- Unfortunately, we couldn’t avoid one of our outlets in our instance, so I had to get creative to work around it. Ideally, we would have avoided it altogether.
- I wasn’t too concerned about ours, however, because it will eventually be hidden behind a piece of furniture.
- For boards that have already been primed, go to Home Depot (you can use any size you want but this is what we went with)
- Miter saws are available at Home Depot and Amazon.com (to cut the boards)
- You may buy a square from Home Depot or Amazon (to draw straight lines where to saw the boards)
- homedepot.com | amazon.com: nail gun with nails (to attach boards to the wall)
- Home Depot is the place to go for panelling adhesive (to attach boards to the wall)
- Home Depot and Amazon both sell measuring tapes (I hope this one is self-explanatory)
- (If you’re using 1×2 boards like I did, I recommend getting 1.5′′ painter’s tape because it’s similar in size to 1×2 boards and can be used for templating.)