When we moved into our new home, I knew I wanted to create an accent wall in each of our children’s bedrooms. We opted to do a DIY board and batten accent wall for Carter’s. Carter was leaving his original nautical nursery decor behind and overdue for his “big boy” room upgrade, which had been planned for his 5th birthday. Since we’d be moving soon after his birthday, we decided to save the transformation for our new home.
After a lot of thought, Carter decided to stick with a nautical theme. I let him choose his own bedding and he went with this nautical navy and green shark set, so I planned the rest of his room around that. I also grabbed these navy blackout curtains and this nautical ceiling fan (Amazon affiliate links).
Next it was time to get to work on the DIY board and batten accent wall. Here’s how we did it.
Planning the DIY Board and Batten Accent Wall
I’m a very visual person, so I needed to “see” how this was going to look in real life before committing. My initial vision was to use navy board and batten about 2/3 up the wall and this nautical yacht wall paper on the top 1/3. We ordered a sample of the paper and several Samplize navy paint swatches.
Then Ryan used cardboard to mockup the board and batten measurements.
I highly recommend this step because we made a few adjustments in panel width after seeing how they looked in real life. This also showed us where we’d run into problems with outlets underneath our wood. Each room in our new home has pre-wired TV/electrical boxes on one wall. Ours happened to fall right above Carter’s bed. The lamp outlet on the floor behind Carter’s nightstand also feel right under a piece of wood.
Since we aren’t using the TV mounts at all, we opted to remove and drywall over this one. Then we also moved the electrical outlet over a few inches. The other option would have been to cut out the wood around the electrical box (especially since it was hidden behind his nightstand), but since we were already doing drywall and electrical work, we decided to make it all super clean and even by just moving the outlet.
DIY Board and Batten Accent Wall Assembly
Now that we were happy with our design and measurements, it was time to build. We used 1 x 4 pine and had to go to several stores to get enough of it, thanks to supply issues. We used a miter saw for all cuts.
I’ve seen some people build these directly onto the wall by nailing them in place. My husband opted to pre-build ours in the garage and then install it.
To keep everything smooth and nearly seamless, we used this pocket hole jig kit (Amazon affiliate link) and a drill. We also used wood glue on the joints.
As you can see, this does beautiful work!
Here is half of our board and batten accent wall, so now it’s time to take it inside and check the fit.
At this point, it’s look really nice and lines up perfectly in the room as planned.
I wanted to add an edge to the top of the board and batten so Carter would have a place to display some of his favorite toys. Later he may opt to use this for art, trophies, or other collections. We had to decide on the depth, so tried a few different sizes on. We opted to use 1x 3 pine.
Back to the garage to build the other half of the accent wall. Once that was finished, it was time to install for real. I recommend several helpers for this part of the job.
The board and batten has just a little bit of “flex” in it, which we used to snap it into place on the wall juuuuuust right.
Then we nailed it into place with finish nails. Finish screws would have worked here too.
We had worked really hard to hide our work and keep things seamless, so the nail holes were a problem, but nothing a little wood filler couldn’t fix. We also lightly sanded the entire piece after this.
I realized we didn’t get any pictures of the last step, but we caulked all edges where the board and batten met the actual wall. This was important before painting!
Completed DIY Board and Batten Accent Wall
Now it was time to call in the professionals for paint. He used a dark gray primer on the wood.
We used Sherwin Williams Salty Dog for the accent and Comfort Gray (which is actually a really pretty watery blue/green with undertones) for the walls.
Nautical Room Reveal
Here’s the finished result with Carter’s accessories added back in. After seeing everything together, I opted to keep it simple and not add wallpaper to the top here. I do wish Carter’s original name sign from his nursery was a little larger with our new taller ceilings, but it’s a sentimental piece we plan to keep anyway. The edge on the top of the board and batten is a great display shelf!
I love the way it looks from the hallway!
If you decide to tackle this project, I’d love to see your results. Let’s connect on Instagram!