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Kids’ Bathroom Progress: DIY Board and Batten

by | Feb 28, 2011 | Bathrooms, Decorating Inspiration

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Kids' Bathroom Progress: DIY Board and Batten

DIY (swine?) board and batten walls!

UPDATE: This bathroom is now finished! Want to see how it all turned out?
Make sure you check it out here in the bathroom reveal!

We made a little bit more progress on our bathroom updates with our Home Depot gift card! Yipee! We are super slow but at least we eventually do make progress.

Before I talk about the kids’ bathroom, you might remember I shared about some of the things from Home Depot that we are going to put in our powder room. Last weekend we also bought an awesome tilt mirror like this from Home Depot for that same bathroom! I love that mirror, it is so simple but classic!

And then sadly (and I think this is one of those Murphy’s Law things) about two weeks ago our master bathroom toilet stopped flushing, so we have been looking into the possibility of needing a new toilet. Just so we can be working on three bathrooms at once.

Meanwhile though, back to the kids’ bathroom, we are making slow but sure progress!

Yes, the wall color is bright. Don’t adjust your monitor. It is bright.  But I’m going to balance it out a bit with the accessories so I’m not too worried about it at this point. Plus, it is a generally dark kids’ bathroom so having a little zing and happiness on the walls in here is going to be fabulous.

Kids' Bathroom Progress: DIY Board and Batten

Swine Swine Everywhere Swine!

And yes, all the woodwork looks … pink (um, yeah, more SWINE).  Because clearly our contractor was in touch with his feminine side when he picked all the paint for this house. Grrr. Must fix that.

What have I done so far in this room?

So far I have painted the walls, the ceiling (this was prior to my new ladder, so I painted it perched on a chair) and we started in on the board and batten! Oh, and I changed the cabinet hardware .

Yes, I painted the ceiling

I decided to paint the ceiling the same as the walls because 1) I like painted ceilings. 2) We have no crown molding in this room. 3) In a small room like this, painting the ceiling makes the room feel more cohesive and not so choppy. 4) I am a horrible painter and cannot keep wall paint OFF the ceiling when I paint, so painting the ceiling makes a project SO much easier than trying to paint a straight line!)

Board and batten the easy way.

To be honest, I was really nervous about doing a board & batten project (our old houses came with them already done, I’m not used to having to ADD so much character to our walls) but I went to my new favorite hangout, Home Depot, with my measurements and they were super helpful. They cut all the battens for me. I used 2 inch mdf battens that were already primed, so it was super easy, no need to cut, saw, sand or prime or anything. YES! Just glue and nail.

Kids' Bathroom Progress: DIY Board and Batten
Primed board and batten.

You can nail the battens up without a nail gun.

We don’t own a nail gun, but my hubby has a nail tapper thing (not sure what it is called) so it was not hard at all to nail up the battens the old fashioned way — with a hammer and nails. You just use the tapper thing to sink the nails into the wood so you can’t see them. It really wasn’t hard at all. The only hard part is making sure that all the measuring is done and everything is level and equal. I’m kind of picky about that! We did use some Liquid Nails on the battens first.

Disclaimer: We only used battens, no “board.”
Yes, that might be cheating.

We decided to not use wall boards this time (just battens) even though I would really prefer the look of the wood behind the battens over just seeing the wall. Since this is a second floor kids’ bathroom I decided to skip that one extra step. I think once it is all painted out it will look fine. If this was a main area of my house, I’d definitely consider doing the boards on the wall because I think it would add just a little more quality to project (especially since we have slightly textured drywall.)

I’m also not a real fan of mdf, but it is affordable and easy to work with so that is what we went with this time!

Kids' Bathroom Progress: DIY Board and Batten

I painted the ceiling too! The swine woodwork is going to drive me crazy.

What’s next?

I have to go back to Home Depot to get another chunk of mdf for the top piece of molding in the corner by the door.

We need to fill the nail holes, caulk the seams and paint the “board and batten” part of the wall and the woodwork (NO! MORE! SWINE!) all a nice shade of white. I think the end result of this project is going to be great, but right now it all looks a bit rough and the pink/blue combo is not good. Sometimes things look worse before they look better! (right?)


Kids' Bathroom Progress: DIY Board and Batten

The other side of the room

EW! This side of the room is pure chaos to my eyes. I can barely look at it.

Half swine, half blue and LOTS of mess. BAH! That combo pretty much makes me nauseous!

I haven’t decided yet if I’ll continue the board and batten around the cabinet walls or not.  I need to rip off the “side/back splash” and do a little bit of work to cut the battens around the counter, but it could be done if I decide to go that route.

UPDATE! Want to see what we did with that side of the wall? 

Kids' Bathroom Progress: DIY Board and Batten

The step by step backsplash can be found in my faux tin ceiling tile back splash tutorial!

Kids' Bathroom Progress: DIY Board and Batten

The toilet/tub room

Annnnnnd, more swine walls that need to be painted. I have been debating what color to paint this little adjoining toilet/shower room, but after seeing how bright the blue is in the other side of the room (even though I love the color), I think I’ll paint this little room a pleasant shade of white to keep things from being TOO BLUE.  See the swine?  It.never.ends, I’m telling you. Swine is going to be the death of me.

This is where I reveal that I am a dork….

When I posted about the blue color of this bathroom, I actually told you all THE WRONG COLOR!


I can’t believe I did that.

But you know how when you have a million samples of blue strewn about and they all kind of look the same and your mind fogs over and you can’t even remember your name let alone the name of the paint samples? And then you grab one that looks like it and like a crazy woman you write a whole post about that color?


Long story short, I gave out the wrong paint color.

The one I mentioned was a lovely one, though, so those of you who went out to buy it (yes, I did hear from people who did that!) I’m sure hope you will love it. Gah, so sorry!

This wall paint is actually called Lagoon by Martha Stewart. You can find the paint at Home Depot, where all of my supplies have come from so far for this project!

And now I duck my head and promise to always double check my paint can before I talk about my paint colors.


*****UPDATE …. see how this bathroom has evolved here!****


Three cheers for Home Depot!

A great big thank you to HOME DEPOT for the gift card to help us get started on these fun bathroom projects!

More progress reports to come! Hopefully things will start coming together!


{I’m adding my post to Get Your Craft On at Today’s Creative Blog!}

“The Home Depot works with bloggers such as myself to conduct product reviews. They do not tell bloggers what to say about their products or how to say it. The Home Depot fundamentally believes that people should be free to form their own opinions and share them in their own words. The Home Depot often provides product – free of charge – to bloggers for review as they did for this post. The Home Depot’s policies align with WOMMA Ethics Code, FTC guidelines and social media engagement recommendations.”


  1. Becky K.

    I so agree with all of your reasons to paint the ceiling. Especially the one about painting in a straight line….lol.
    That’s me too!

    Bless your heart. Naming the wrong paint color. It was probably just the right thing for those who got it. If not, they have a great story to tell. Hugs. You are so sweet!!

    Have a wonderful day.

  2. Tracey

    We have a painted ceiling in our kids room and I love it, it makes me want all painted ceilings.

    You are truckin’ right along with this project and it looks great!

  3. laxsupermom

    I love painting ceilings for those same reasons. The battens look terrific! Can’t wait to see it all painted out.

    You wouldn’t be the first one to give out the wrong paint color name. I had painted my kitchen a warm, buttery yellow after first putting on a coat of “my eyes are bleeding, it’s so bright” yellow on the walls. My cousin loved the {new} color and asked what it was for her mudroom. I gave her the name of the burn-your-eyes color, but luckily I had half a can of the good stuff left and offered it to her so everything worked out. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Lauren

    I don’t think the color is too bright at all, perfect for a kids bathroom. Plus it’s not the whole wall so once you get the bottom painted it will look great.

  5. Spring

    I have been craving a color in the turquoise family- I am LOVING the color of that bathroom! And I have to say, until this post, I never quite “got” how horrid that swine color is… up against the blue, it SCREAMS “oink oink oink!” Horrific!! I hope you are able to eradicate the rest of it soon! LOL!

    • Melissa

      Now you know. LOL. It really does GLOW in all its swineness in this post.

  6. FairfieldHouse


    Thanks for giving me my first smile of the day! Between ‘swine everywhere’ and giving out the wrong color on your post I almost choked on my coffee. :)
    The white trim and board and batten against the blue will look great. I want to install board and batten in my dining room. Eventually. I’m aiming for 2016.

    Your Friend,

  7. Lisa

    Love the “batten”. I might finally have the courage to try this myself especially if my Home Depot will cut the boards for me. LOVE that blue, especially for a kid’s bathroom!!!

    • Melissa

      Oh yes, having HD cut the boards made all the difference. I couldn’t imagine having to do that myself!!

  8. gina

    Looks great! I love the color too. Cannot wait to see the board and batten all painted up. Great job!

  9. Kaye

    The “nail tapper thing” is actually called a nail set. I have one in my toolbox handed down from my dad, a master craftsman. It sure is handy!

    • James Collins

      Oh !! Yes, I appreciate you. In a small room like this, painting the ceiling makes the room feel more cohesive.

  10. Deanna


    I love the bright color in the bathroom! My friend Tracy did the board and batten look in her master bedroom without the board too, and it is fantastic!

    Have fun with all your house projects!

  11. Trish

    Those “teaser” photos are killing me- I can’t wait to see the finished room! Beautiful blue/teal!

    • Melissa

      Soon! I HOPE! I’m so slowwwww!

  12. Patti Balhorn

    I’m really enjoying your blog. It has so much information and I love the way you emphasize making your home your own. I can’t agree with you more. I had received a Architectural Digest Magazine as a gift and I never found the rooms inviting or showed the personality of the owners. It always appeared as though a designer came in and took over the project. I have enjoyed blogs and seeing all the amazing talented bloggers out there who really have so much talent. Your blog provides such great information on making a home your own with your own personal touches. I will be following along.

  13. Yarnista

    love, Love, LOVE the Lagoon color! A huge improvement over swine any day!

  14. Luciane at

    Every time I come here I laugh!

    I’ know what you’re going through, since I have 2 children and spent many hours painting their bedrooms, trying to find the right color, etc.

    Thank you for always being so honest… reading your blog is as I’m talking to a friend.

    Drop by my blog if you have a minute, ok? It’s always great to see you there!

    Have a blessed week!


    Luciane at

  15. the cottage child

    I like seeing the mid-point, it’s still progress! Wishing you continued kids bath success, and buckets of fresh white paint to cover up the “swine”.

  16. Barb

    Very cool idea. To ease your mind a bit, mdf is good for painting and also supposed to be good in baths. I’m no fan for sure but it does paint well.

    Same sentiment about the swine. Thought it was more builder beige until it shows up against the turquoise. Bless his heart, that man tried, but left you with one ugly base color.

    You will get rid of it and think of the joy once all the swine is gone! Paint can be a very scary thing, especially in the PNW with all the gray/green light we get from the outside.

    I am fearing the paint thing myself. If anyone knows a good light gold I would forever appreciate it. Has to be BM paint. It’s for a sons’ room and I want to keep his bedding. It is gorgeous and timeless. Also just did new silk stripe drapes in there so I don’t want to change out the entire thing. Walls need to be a softer gold. I am not a gold fan but this room needs to be a soft goldish color.

    Melissa, at least you did not PICK the swine. I picked the color for my house that I have lived with for far too long.

    Can’t wait to see your finished product.

  17. Ivy

    If I do a wall treatment to a bathroom, I’ve always done beadboard. After these pictures, I’m definitely going to try Board & Baton. I’m so excited to see the final result.

  18. Mary Joy


    I love that you are so authentic!!! LOL LOL I completely relate to the ceiling problem. I love painting ceilings one or two shades lighter than the wall color…but I frequently have the problem of not being able to keep the wall paint off the ceiling. I love your solution!!! So much easier!!! :D

    The batten is so neat! I am going to have to try that sometime. Its on my list of things to add to a house when we have a landlord that will let us. I know that they are out there and I am praying for a house a little bigger to better fit all of our children, my husband’s music studio, a place for all of my homeschooling supplies and a master bedroom that is big enough for more than our bed and dresser. :D Then I will smile sweetly and ask to paint the walls and ceilings!!!

    Thanks for the smile!!! I so relate to you! :D

    Building HOme with Him,

    Mary Joy

  19. {darlene}

    I think it is looking great!! I love the blue color!
    I also love that you showed us your ‘work in progress’ pics. that encourages me to bear with the mess while I am getting things ACCOMPLISHED!

  20. Jo

    Your board and batten looks great so far! I have a little trick to make things look more wood-like: Use a paintbrush instead of a roller. I did that when I painted the inside of our front door, and it totally change the look of the door. Just be careful to get all your brush strokes to go with the “grain”.

    • Melissa

      BRILLIANT! I love that idea, I think I’ll do that when painting our doors too because they are so NEW HOUSEY! We need some brush strokes in this house. And painted over globs of paint. I can totally do that. THANK YOU!

  21. Marla

    Great color Melissa! Very close (in photos at least) to our ‘new’ Master Bath in MS Geyser. I call it our Little Jewel room (all 5’x7′ of it)…add-on & remodel coming…

    I have to ask about that bathroom backsplash though…how do you rip that out without damaging the drywall behind?

    The reason I ask is we have two bathrooms with same style back & side splashes of laminate sheets edged in ‘ageless’ aluminum framing, plus 16″ walls of the avocado stuff in the kitchen (major remodel in next 1-2 yrs. so not wanting to spend lots of $ now). UGH!

    After ‘updating’ a 1973 house for the last 4 months, I empathize and ask myself, “Do I have enough years left to finish all the painting and other projects in this house so we can get moved in?”

    Hang in there Melissa. We can’t do it all overnight, however we can find ‘peace in the process’!;)

    • Melissa

      Good question. It probably will mess up the wall. So, I will probably have to put something else in its place. I can’t figure out what to do there if I do board & batten….it all seems confusing to me right there. Wondering if it might be easier to just not do it by the sink??? AHHH! I don’t know! But I don’t like the laminate there either.

      In our old house we actually put a wood molding in that spot and it worked fine, so maybe that is what I need to do!

  22. Jocelyn Stott

    I love painted ceilings and have been trying to convince my husband that they are a good idea, so I think I will show him this. Thanks!

  23. Karli

    I just painted and installed some board and batten in my nursery and if you’re looking for a great white to use, I used Timid White by Benjamin Moore. It really is the perfect white for it!

  24. Heidi Milton

    Lots of great stuff in this post, Melissa! You’ve been busy– I like your tip about leaving off the board. Such a great option for achieving that look!

  25. jennifer a

    Hey Melissa! I LOVE your blog! I’m a total lurker though…sorry about that! (hopefully not the creepy kind though…:)) Anyway, I was wondering about painting your ceiling…I’ve been wanting to paint our bathroom ceiling for MONTHS now, but we have a vent and a fan on ours — one metal, one plastic, and I’m worried abotu getting the paint in the grooves evenly enough that there aren’t white spots sticking out like a sore thumb. Any ideas? I know I should probably just go for it, but I’m a newbie DIYer and I’m totally nervous here!
    I LOVE the bright blue color, by the way. I think bathrooms are definitely places you can just have fun with color!

  26. Kathysue

    Melissa, I love the Lagoon color especially with white it is going to look so crisp and fun. My hubby is putting up batten on wall board tomorrow in part of the playroom redo we are working on. I love that look even though it is only in a very small portion of the room I love it. We have used exactly the same products as you!!! I wish you luck!! KS

  27. ClassiclyAmber

    Oh, it’s looking good! Can’t wait to see the big finish! :D

  28. Emily

    Oh Melissa, how you make me laugh. Like, a lot. Can’t get over you issuing the wrong paint color!! Haha, love it. :)

    p.s.-why doesn’t the comment luv work for me anymore? It says no last blog posts to return…and it’s just not on your site. Hmmm…


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