How to Install Picture Frame Wainscoting – DIY Wall Treatment
I have wanted to add board and batten or picture frame wainscoting to a wall in my house for a long time now. My hubby was against it though forever because we recently remodeled the house and had all the walls drywalled and textured and they were freshly painted. He kept saying no we just did the walls we don’t need anything fancy.
Well, I finally wore him down and convinced him to add picture frame wainscoting in our bedroom. We were getting a new bed and mattress so I said why not do it before we put the new bed together! I really wanted a special wall treatment behind the out new bed.
We decided to go with this thin picture frame wainscoting because it was pretty cheap and seemed like it wouldn’t be very hard. It was not hard at all and besides the tedious caulking, it went by really fast.
Traditionally, wainscoting consists of a square (box) or four-sided frames to build a wall treatment. You can choose whether to place a solid board against the wall or use trim to create a frame. We went with the frame right on the wall. Using wainscoting panels is a good way to do it too.
Our bedroom is really small. The wall we actually did the DIY wall treatment on was actually 12 feet high but it had the door as well. I was hoping to make the room look bigger and add some texture with the wainscoting design.
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Modern Wainscoting Panels
I really loved how Jennifer Maune did her daughter’s room here and used that for inspiration! How stunning is this, doesn’t it make the room look so elegant?
The problem with our room is the wall is not as wide and also has the door so it turned out a bit different but I still love it. Because I wanted decent size rectangles we chose to only do 4 rectangles or boxes total.
Two skinnier ones and 2 wider ones. Where Jennifer did 3 skinnier and 2 wider sections.
Below is the shot from our room. I just want to apologize for the horrible quality photo ahead of time. It was raining that day and really dark and gloomy. We wanted to put the room back together so I couldn’t wait to take more photos.
Plus the walls are white and it’s hard to see all the details.
Like I said bad photo but you get the idea. The window behind me made it impossible to photograph that day. Check out some other angles though that turned out way better!
DIY Picture Frame Wainscoting with Trim
Meausring and spacing for Picture frame Moulding
Now let’s get to the details on how we DIY wainscoting measurements and spacing. First I mapped out and took measurements of the room. I created this graphic to show you how we came up with the sizes.
First, take measurements of the wall and then decide how many inches you want the spacing between the frames to be. Whatever you pick will be the spacing between the boxes side to side and above in between the ceiling and baseboards.
Here you can see how the measurements and the measurements we ended up choosing. The tricky part was above the door. Do we center that box above it or not? We chose to keep the same spacing of 6 inches from the previous box and the walls and door.
When measuring for picture frame moulding we came up with the 6 inch spacing because we knew the trim would come in 8 feet lengths and we wouldn’t have to cut down the pieces.
What Supplies and moulding to use for picture frame wainscoting DIY wall treatment
- Trim/frame enough according to wall size
- liquid nails
- nail gun and nails we used were 15 gage
Next up we loaded up and went to Lowes to get the supplies. We bought 11/16 X 1-1/8 X 96 WHT CAP MLDG for the frame pieces. It was the smallest frame like moulding they had that looked similar to a picture frame.
Each piece was $4.96 and we bought 14 pieces total with a few leftovers that we wanted in case we messed up. We also bought liquid nails because we didn’t have any on hand which was only $1.78 each. We spent about $70 in total. We had the nails and caulk already. Making this wainscoting DIY project super cheap compared to others!
This is my husband Cole double checking the each piece was 96 inches long. Good thing he did because some of them were longer than that.
He cut each trim piece with 45 degree angles with his new shiny toy he just bought. I think it’s funny how men think we are the expensive ones!
We brought all the pieces inside and used a laser level, another new toy he had to have. I didn’t care as long as I got my picture frame wainscoting wall done!
The laser level was legit though and saved us a ton of time. In the pic above he is double-checking the measurements and spacing. We live in a mobile home so the walls aren’t always square. If you are a DIYer save the headache and buy the level trust me!
Before putting up the pieces we added liquid nails to the back of them. Doesn’t have to be perfect under there!
We started with all the bottom pieces. This is where the level came in handy. Using the lasers it was super easy to make sure all the pieces were level and at the right height. This is not where we placed the first piece I just snapped the pic a bit early.
He added 15 gage nails every 12 inches or so to secure it to the wall. Don’t go crazy nailing because it will be more to caulk later!
When we got to the side pieces we adjusted to laser level and the pieces lined up so easy. It is definitely easier with two people hanging the trim though. He would secure the bottom with the nail gun while I held the piece up.
Once all of the pieces are up comes the fun part. Caulking. Which I am horrible at and it took me forever. This is when the hubby bows out and leaves me to finish. There is a crap ton of caulkign to do in this project!
I did all the nail holes and the on both sides of the trim to make it seamless when done.
I used this 120 sanding stone to sand down the caulking over the nail holes.
Next up I painted the same color as the wall which is Benjamin Moore Chantilly lace. Sorry, I don’t have any pictures of that but you can use your imagination.
Wainscoting on Walls with trim
Check out this gallery with other wainscoting options from Pinterest!
All in all in turned out great. The piece above the door is a bit off looking but nobody looks that high really anyway!
That’s it for this easy DIY frame wainscotting project. It was very inexpensive and only took a few hours total. If you liked this project make sure to pin it for later and check out my other recent posts!
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