4 lessons I learned with my DIY faux planked wall
Not to long ago I painted my craft room sub floor. My sister from Cally was up in the midst of said project. She nodded and then said something that gave me a design wake-up call. "You must really like stripes."
That got me looking around and it became quite clear it's my go-to technique.
The stripe obsession must end and so it shall be.
I decided the perfect solution would be to take the leftover Allure flooring and create a faux plank wall. The perfect canvas was the wall behind the wood stove.
I'm not going to lie to you. There were many moments I thought what in the heck was I thinking. This DIY project was tough. Hammer missed its target more times than I can shake a stick at. Nails were flying. Explicit language filled the air. And at times, I thought I had really, really messed up.
Throughout my Allure flooring to plank wall project, I learned many lessons. And if I were to do this again...I'd use these lessons to make the job a whole lot easier.
Day One: Attach Allure Flooring to Wall
Research said I needed to mark the studs. I didn't have a stud finder so I went to Youtube. There I learned studs are typically every 16". One way you can find them is by locating an outlet and knock. Listen for the solid sound vs. the hollow one. Once you find it, measure your 16 inches.
Okay. Seemed pretty straight forward. I knocked. Listened. Knocked. Then knocked until my knuckles began to hurt. That's when I figured out my studs are 24 inches apart. Made me wonder is this a manufactured home standard?
Then I measured my top line which is 5 feet. I decided to work from the top down because it was a straight line.
Each plank got a swath of Hard as Nails adhesive. Then I tacked it down with a nail on the stud line. Sounds easy, right? Either my nails were weenies or the flooring was tougher than nails. Most likely both. Either way, I had a hell of a lot of bent nails and sore fingers.
Lesson 1: If you don't have a nail gun, buy good nails.
The flooring was lining up pretty good. About the time I was three to four rows down I began to notice the darn things were not "snapping" like they were supposed to. This was the point I was getting seriously nervous. I envisioned myself pulling the flooring off along with the sheet rock.
Keep in mind Hubby is at work. He knows nothing. To come home with parts of the sheet rock lying on the floor was not something I wanted to explain.
It was pretty ugly.
Lesson 2: Rip the flooring so that all edges are clean and square.
This is about the time I ran out of Hard as Nails.
A trip to local hardware store (45 minutes away) and I came home with some wood filler, 2 gallons of paint, 1 x 4 trim boards, and enough Hard as Nails to get this job and the next one done.
I finished attaching the planks then filled every seam with the wood filler.
Day one ended with one coat of Clark+Keningston eggshell Blue Fedora paint on the top of wall.
It's beginning to look like a planked wall. Phew.
Day 2: Sand, Paint Plank Wall & Add Trim
With sand paper and steel wool in hand, I went to work. This. Was. Not. Fun. Apparently I went a little wood filler happy.
The sand paper helped remove most of the the wood filler. The steel wool smoothed it out.
You should know that before I began sanding I had cut the trim boards and gave each one a coat of Kiltz latex primer.
With the wall all sanded, I mixed up some eggshell Clark+Keningston white paint with some water and Plaster of Paris. Because the surface is so smooth, I needed something that would adhere to it and the mix of Plaster of Paris would do just that. Basically it's homemade chalk paint.
I gave it two coats and then added the trim board. That's when I learned lesson number three.
I should have measured it from the top to floor. For some crazy reason I never even considered altering the baseboards.
Now I wish I had cut the trim boards to floor and altered the baseboards to fit the new width. I wouldn't have had to add additional wood filler nor would I have had this awkward meeting of two styles. Good thing this is in the corner and is hidden.
Lesson 3: Cut trim boards to fit from top of the planked wall all the way to floor.
I knew going in that the rounded corner wall was going to be a problem. Instead of being patient and planning it out, I did what I usually do...jump in without testing the waters. I couldn't quite figure out how to hide the end cuts with the trim board. My solution was to cut them just shy of the edge of the wall.
Problem...the trim board did not fit flush to wall.
To fix my error I filled the gap with wood filler and painted it to match the light wall color.
What I should have done was bought the trim boards first then measured the four inches width of the board on the wall. The Allure flooring would have been cut to this line and the trim work would have laid flush to the wall. Duh, Kelli.
Lesson 4: Begin with all of your materials. Before you create your plank wall, lay trim boards and planks on the floor to get an idea of what works or doesn't work.
Day 3: Decorate Accent Planked Wall
I always love this part of the project. Bringing it all together.
This is the man wall.
The wall where his hunting stories are displayed.
With just a touch of me.
I painted each of the deer plaque bases black which gave them a bit more pop and tied them together.
I'm happy that I was able to tie in the wall decor with the items on the shelf.
Even though there were some lessons learned with my DIY Allure flooring planked wall, I am pretty happy with the end result.
Here it is before I went all in...
What do you think? Would love to hear your DIY lessons learned.