Learn how to cover a dated, textured, and stained ceiling with a cottage style DIY beadboard ceiling for a custom look.
Can you believe I wrote the first draft on this DIY beadboard ceiling post a whole year ago? Yikes. We actually had it completed way before the rest of the powder room!
As I mentioned in the reveal, we kind of shoved the whole powder room project aside to tackle the kitchen. I think that time offered us a new perspective, and this is now my favorite room in the house! So far it has the most personality- it’s the most “us”. I think decor played a huge role in that.
I also think my affection for this room has a lot to do with the details we added. I am a huge fan of upgrades like beadboard. I love both traditional and cottage/farmhouse styles, and it ties into both nicely. We opted to go with board and batten for the walls, but I knew something had to be done to cover the ceiling. Lucky for us, the ceiling was the perfect size for a single beadboard sheet, and we already had the crown molding. This project was not at all expensive, or time consuming. However, I won’t lie- it is tricky and tiring to hold up the paneling and trim with only two people- hence the lack of photos on some steps. Here’s how we did it!
Here was our starting point. You can see the light-absorbing texture and the water stains in the photo. What you can’t see is all of the dust that gets trapped in the texture. Technically, I could have tried to really scrub it and paint it- but frankly, I don’t like the texture, and I don’t think semi-gloss paint would have done it any favors.
DIY Beadboard Ceiling
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The beadboard panel was actually the perfect size for this room. We simply measured and cut a hole for the light fixture. We marked the joists on the ceiling, and also created brackets and a support brace in case the panel decided to fall during the installation process. We added liquid nails to the back of the panel and Mack began nailing the panel up at the ceiling joists using the nail gun.
You can see from the holes in the ceiling to the far left that we had some trouble finding the joists. There’s apparently a layer of strapping between the drywall and the joists.
There are some photos from steps missing at this point since it became a 2-person job holding up the boards and nailing them into place. We cut and mitered 4″ baseboard trim to frame out the panel, again nailing them in at the joists. This closed in the gap around the edges of the beadboard, and provided a nice foundation for the crown. The crown was the finishing touch!
Here’s Mack using wood filler to try to close the gaps. The room isn’t even close to square- so we ended up using a lot of materials to try to give it the most profession finish possible. The wood filler wasn’t the best option- we ended up closing in the big spaces with Drydex, and then going over everything and filling the gaps with caulk.
After filling the nail holes with more Drydex, light sanding, and semi-gloss Benjamin Moore Simply White paint- we have a whole new ceiling. It is so bright and reflective- it brightens up the whole room and even the dark hallway. I love it.
However, if I were to do it all over again, there are a few things I would do differently:
- I’d go straight to the Drydex and caulk to fill in the gaps rather than mess around with the wood filler.
- I would do this project before painting the walls- they ended up needing a new coat because of damage from this project.
- I would use our paint sprayer.
Live and learn! This was one of the first DIY projects in this house, so we’ve definitely learned a lot about finish work since then. I’m sure this project will make an appearance elsewhere in this house. We are talking about modifying it to create a drop ceiling in our basement when we get to that project someday.
Overall this was a great solution for a small room with a dingy ceiling. It was inexpensive and impactful. The best sort of project! Next up for the powder room, I will be sharing the DIY vanity, and then the wall treatment! We have so many new projects in the works, I’m getting a little overwhelmed!
Other powder room projects:
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