Covering Up A Half Wall – Part 1

We moved into our house 7 years ago and there were quite a few things that we would have done differently had we built the house and not bought it as is. Thankfully my husband and I love working on DIY projects together so we’ve been able to change quite a bit and put our own touches into the home. We had a half wall or pony wall that was visible from the front door and separated the front room and family room. The wall not only collected a lot of dust and became a catch all area for clutter, but our kids also loved to use it as a jungle gym. It was on our top ten list of projects and we finally got around to doing it!

We decided to shiplap the wall that faces the front room, completely covering the cutout that opened up into the family room. On the opposite wall we added shiplap and long shelving so it would almost be like a built in bookshelf. We have shiplapped several other areas in our home and used several different approaches so we have a pretty good feel for what works best.

Curtis used 2×4’s to frame out the opening of the wall and he cut the 45 degree decorative angles, leaving the edges square. It was amazing how much better it looked right away! The 2×4’s were installed flush with the wall so the MDF shiplap boards could go right over the opening on the wall to cover it.

Materials needed:

-1/2 inch MDF Wood – Lowes is our favorite hardware store and they will rip your wood down for free. They supply all of the lumber for JaxnBlvd and we have always had a great experience working with them!

-Nail Gun and Nails

-Router and Router Bit

-Chop Saw or Miter Saw

-Stud Finder

-Level

-Caulk

-Sandpaper

-2×4’s if covering a half wall

We like using 1/2 inch MDF, it’s not too heavy and not too expensive. We routed all of the edges and sides which allowed us to butt the boards against right up against each other and still give a shiplap look – almost like tongue and groove but much more affordable. Using MDF can be messy, especially when using a router. Sawdust gets everywhere! We usually cut our boards for shiplap to be 7 inches wide but decided to cut the boards for this wall at 11 inches wide to save a little time on this project. We always like to remove the baseboards before starting and we work from the bottom up.

I wanted a clean, seamless look but ultimately decided I didn’t want to put in the work to create that look. It would involve a lot of caulking and sanding and that was not something I was interested in. In order to create a pattern that would not look busy but would still look clean , Curtis used he same 3 cuts and rotated placement on the walls. We also cut the ends at a 45 degree angle and this helped the boards fit together really well and look seamless on the edges.

I’m often asked how I’m able to complete so much so quickly. We plan out our projects 100% from start to finish and we gather all the materials we need so we can work, work, work as much as possible without stopping. My husband works really fast and is great about at not stopping until it’s done. If I am not tending to the kids then I am working right along side him. For this project, I spent several hours routing the boards for the shiplap so he could work on the rest of the project. We work really well together and pretty quickly with only minimal fighting 🙂

I can’t wait to share the finished product with you, so check back next week for the reveal!

-Kim

 

 

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