DIY Tutorials|Renovating

DIY Beadboard Ceiling

DIY Beadboard Ceiling Tutorial | Learn how to cover a dated, textured, and stained ceiling with a cottage style DIY beadboard ceiling for a custom look.

Learn how to cover a dated, textured, and stained ceiling with a cottage style DIY beadboard ceiling for a custom look.

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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!

DIY Beadboard Ceiling Tutorial | Learn how to cover a dated, textured, and stained ceiling with a cottage style DIY beadboard ceiling for a custom look.

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

DIY Beadboard Ceiling Tutorial | Learn how to cover a dated, textured, and stained ceiling with a cottage style DIY beadboard ceiling for a custom look.

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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.

DIY Beadboard Ceiling Tutorial | Learn how to cover a dated, textured, and stained ceiling with a cottage style DIY beadboard ceiling for a custom look.

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.

DIY Beadboard Ceiling Tutorial | Learn how to cover a dated, textured, and stained ceiling with a cottage style DIY beadboard ceiling for a custom look.

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!

DIY Beadboard Ceiling Tutorial | Learn how to cover a dated, textured, and stained ceiling with a cottage style DIY beadboard ceiling for a custom look.

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.

DIY Beadboard Ceiling Tutorial | Learn how to cover a dated, textured, and stained ceiling with a cottage style DIY beadboard ceiling for a custom look.

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.

DIY Beadboard Ceiling Tutorial | Learn how to cover a dated, textured, and stained ceiling with a cottage style DIY beadboard ceiling for a custom look.

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: [ubergrid id=13955]

DIY Beadboard Ceiling Tutorial | Learn how to cover a dated, textured, and stained ceiling with a cottage style DIY beadboard ceiling for a custom look.

21 Comments

  1. Lindsay Says

    I love this beadboard ceiling – it’s exactly what I want to do in our downstairs powder room, which has a textured ceiling (ugh) and needs some serious va-va-voom.

    1. Nina Says

      Post author

      Thank you so much Lindsay, and best of luck!! :) It makes such a huge difference!

      1. Drema Says

        Hey I know the bead board was already primed but did you repaint with semi gloss. I’ve always used flat for ceilings but this seems like semi gloss looks better.
        I’ve also read, can’t find now, where regular ceiling paint finish should be the same as trim.., even though I’ve always been taught to use flat.

        Any ideas on this.

        Love your project

        1. Nina Says

          Post author

          Yes, we used semi-gloss. It’s such a tiny room that the reflective properties seem to help brighten it up!

  2. amanda Says

    I love this beadboard – where did you buy it?

    1. Nina Says

      Post author

      Hi Amanda! We purchased it at Lowes. We loved the wider detail!

      1. Emily Says

        About to install beadboard in our bathroom ceilings & wondering if you used vinyl or wood? Did you prime it for mildew proofing in any way? How has it held up?

        1. Nina Says

          Post author

          Hi Emily, We used pre-primed composite panelling. This was a half bath (no shower), so we don’t have any real fear of moisture or mildew. It has held up very well!

      2. Liza Says

        This beadboard is amazing! I looked at Lowes and could only find the smaller width “beads.” Most are around only 2″ but this looks much wider. Do you by chance have a link or item number?? I can’t wait to do this in our kitchen!!

        1. Nina Says

          Post author

          Hi Liza, we have had better luck finding this at Home Depot recently. I looked briefly online but couldn’t find the wider beads. It was at our local store, so that may be the better bet!

  3. Cvano Says

    Your post has given me the courage to do a strip of tiling over our tub and if successful do a much needed backsplash in our kitchen! Optimistic DIY wannabe.

  4. beth Says

    Where did you get your ceiling light fixture. I love that!

  5. Odessa Says

    Can you put the glue on beadboard over foam tiles

    1. Nina Says

      Post author

      Hi! Do you mean like a basement drop ceiling? I would caution against it, beadboard panels are heavy. Two possibilities that come to mind that you could look into are beadboard wallpaper, which you could affix individually to the tiles. You could also possibly replace each tile with a piece of beadboard the same size.

  6. Kylee Says

    What do you do if you have seams

    1. Nina Says

      Post author

      You have a couple of options- you could use a perpendicular board and create a grid pattern, or you can caulk the seams.

  7. Veronica Says

    Hi Nina,
    I love this!! I have a very small house built in the 40’s. It’s a real fixer-upper! The ceilings in the living room and dining room are a real crappy texture – not even sure exactly how they did it. Anyway, I love this idea. I was originally thinking of covering it up with drywall, but I really like this idea much more. Do you think it would be “too much” those main rooms?
    Thanks!

    1. Nina Hendrick Says

      Post author

      It’s hard to say for sure without knowing your space. I think I would definitely go with the wider beads! We ended up covering over our larger ceilings with smooth plaster in the end, since we thought this treatment was better suited to a smaller space.

  8. John Workman Says

    Nina, can you use bead board and cover popcorn ceilings?

    1. Nina Hendrick Says

      Post author

      Hi, John! Yes, you can use beadboard to cover popcorn texture. I would still be sure to use the construction adhesive along with the nails into studs.