Manolo for the Home » DIY Options: Beadboard






DIY Options: Beadboard

By Christa Terry

A friend of mine is thinking about remodeling her master bathroom herself, and I’m behind her all the way. She shared her ideas, and all of them are totally DIY-friendly. Replace a counter top vanity with a pedestal sink? No problem. Put down a new vinyl floor? Easy-peasy. And throw up a few panels of beadboard wainscoting? Doable, definitely. As an aside, This Old House magazine had an article about wainscoting and I found their report on the pronunciation surprising.

Wayne’s coating? Wayne’s cotting? Wayne’s kitting? Merriam-Webster prefers the first pronunciation, but all are acceptable. It’s also fine to call it wainscot; the terms are interchangeable.

Who knew? But back to beadboard… I love it, mainly for its country chic look and its versatility. Beadboard isn’t just bathrooms, though they look great in small spaces like the powder room, hallways, and mud rooms.

Beadboard walls 1

In this particular bathroom from the Swan Corporation, I like how the look of the white wainscoting is continued in the sea foam bath stall walls. It’s a subtle inside/outside effect that makes the space look a little bit more expansive than it really is.

Beadboard walls 2

I was going to use this beadboard wainscoting as an example of how beadboard doesn’t have to stop at a relatively low chair rail, but it turns out that this is actually paintable beadboard wallpaper. Beadboard wallpaper is fairly inexpensive and easy to put up, though it doesn’t look quite as nice as the real thing.

Beadboard walls 3

Hot pink beadboard wainscoting in this room from Green Apple Design turns a plain wall into a display shelf for artwork or framed photographs. (I love the color — in fact, we have cans of that same color for our post-renovation nursery.) It’s nice to see more painted beadboard since the more common configuration includes a colored wall and white beadboard.

Beadboard walls 4

Like this one from Nantucket Beadboard. The contrast created by the white beadboard and the dark counter top is awesome, especially when paired with such a cheery bright blue. It’s very fresh and outdoorsy without being too beachy. The pretty blue glass bottle by the sink doesn’t hurt the look, but I’d make sure no one tried to add any seashells.

Beadboard walls 5

Beadboard doesn’t have to end at a chair rail! Floor to ceiling beadboard looks very rustic and homey, but stops short of looking like it belongs in a farmhouse. Look closely at the ceiling, however, since the beadboard doesn’t stop there, either. This room features beadboard everywhere but on the floor. What sets the walls apart from the ceiling is two different shades of the same color and two different widths of beadboard.









3 Responses to “DIY Options: Beadboard”




  1. narock Says:

    Beadboard is great. My mom recently redid her kitchen and, instead of having custom-built cabinets, she had the contractor put beadboard on the unfinished sides of prefab cabinets and counters, and then painted the beadboard to match the cabinet fronts. The result is amazing. And, since the beadboard appears in “small doses,” it doesn’t create an excessively “country” look.




  2. Jennie Says:

    Tell your friend to get a pedestal sink with a complete open base. Standard plumbing is too low to fit in a half open pedestal. That or he/she will have to raise the plumbing behind the wall.




  3. Cathy Anderson Says:

    I personally like the one on Nantucket Beadboard. It’s cool to the eyes. The combination of colors is pleasing. Though, the one we have in the house is wainscot beadboard. However, because it is real wood, cracking and warping can be an issue especially if it is not glued and nailed properly, I think individual beadboard look more nice.












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