If you are looking for an easy, inexpensive way to really jazz up a room – then look no further than this tutorial for a DIY Grid Wall.
What makes this project so easy to complete? Well, it’s just a grid molding along a square wall, so your four sides are basically done for you already. Then, it’s just a matter of filling in the rest.
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It’s best to draw up a template first of how you envision your grid wall to look. Do you want to go with larger squares or smaller squares? Do you want something more modern or more traditional (with decorative trim)? This will determine how many boards you need. The install process is similar to board and batten.
Here are some photos of the office before. Not bad – but really boring.
Here’s a list of everything you’ll need.
WHAT YOU’LL NEED
- Boards – We used these primed 1×4 pine boards
- Construction Adhesive
- Tape Measure
- Level and Square Tool
- Painter’s Caulk
- Caulking Gun
- Brad Nailer
- Miter Saw
- Paint/Paint Brush ( We painted our wall Hale Navy by Benjamin Moore)
Step by Step – DIY Grid Wall
How to Install a Grid Accent Wall from Start to Finish
Total time: 2 days
Measure & Draw Grid Wall Template
Let’s determine how we want this to look. We measure the wall across and then up and down. We decided to work with the existing baseboard we had (if you don’t have one, you will need to install a baseboard – see step 3). Once we had our template, we could determine the amount of boards we needed to complete the project.
Cut Top & Vertical Boards to Size
Using our template as a reference, we cut the TOP and VERTICAL boards to size with our miter saw. We waited to cut the inner horizontal boards until we had the vertical boards up in place. The baseboards we have are thinner, but we wanted to use thicker boards for this project. So, we cut one end of each vertical board to a 45 degree angle (as shown in pic) so it would lay over the thinner part of the baseboard and blend in. All the vertical boards were the same size, so this made it easy to cut them all at once.
Install Top & Bottom Boards First
Install your Top Board first. This top board is like crown molding, but since it’s just one accent wall, you don’t have to worry about making any mitered cuts. Apply construction adhesive to the back of the board, then secure it to the wall ensuring it is lined up straight with the ceiling. Then, follow up with brad nails. If you don’t have an existing baseboard, you will need to install this next. It should be the same measurement as your top board.
install Vertical Boards
Now, we are going to install the vertical boards to fit in between the top and bottom boards. Starting in the corner and working our way to the other side of the wall. Apply construction adhesive to each boards, and make sure it’s level straight right away before the adhesive sets. Then, follow up with brad nails. Repeat this process for every vertical board at the spacing you determined in step 1. You can also make a spacer board to make this process easier.
Install Horizontal Boards
Now we are just filling in! We measured our wall in between, then drew a mark where each horizontal board would go. We measured EACH space before cutting to ensure we had accurately sized horizontal boards. It’s the same install process as before – apply a little layer of construction adhesive, ensure the board is level straight, then follow up with brad nails. Don’t worry about gaps and nail holes – we will fill all these in soon.
Caulk Gaps & Nail Holes
Apply painter’s caulk (paintable) along the sides of the moldings to fill in any gaps. Our walls are not straight so we had some large gaps to fill in. This process ended up taking a while but it will give you professional results so take your time here. You can also fill in the nail holes. I use a caulking gun and my finger to spread it. Nothing fancy! Allow the caulk to fully dry and then fill in again as needed. Sometimes, we caulk dries, it shrinks and you notice additional gaps that were not there before.
Use some light sandpaper to sand off the rough edges from the caulk. This is a messy job but worth it!
Now we are ready to paint! I used my small Wooster brush along the insides of the molding, and then followed up with a paint roller for everything else.
Additional Install Photos
Here are some additional photos you can reference.
And that’s it my friend! You now have this beautiful accent wall. It really adds so much character to a room and only takes a couple days to complete.
We only spent about $100 bucks on wood and were able to acheive this custom millwork look. I hope you guys give this a try with one of your walls.
Shop this Room
Click on these links or photos for sources.
- Paint – Hale Navy by BM
- Light Fixture
- Leather Loveseat
- Round Table
- Woven Wall Art
- Faux Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree
- Two Tier Record Cabinet in Walnut
- Leather Chairs
- White Boucle Pillow
- Sheepskin Throw
- Record Player
- Marshall Speaker
- White Vase – Afloral
- Flameless Taper Candles
- Billy Button Florals
- Black Side Table/Coffee Table – Article
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