How to plank walls {pool house makeover progress}

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It’s no secret that I love wood planked walls. I added wood plank walls to our family room last year and they are the highlight of the room, along with the white sectional. ha.  When my mom and I decided to makeover the pool house, we decided that an accent wall with planks would be perfect. Our overall mood for the space is a modern cottage pool house that allows for relaxation while still being able to watch the kids swim. How to plank walls is super easy and anyone can do it.

how to plank a wall

how to plank walls DIY

I used my air compressor, finish nail gun, 1 1/4″ finish nails and 1/2″ plywood cut to 6″ wide strips.

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I started at the bottom and worked my way to the ceiling. One board at a time. Be sure to use a level to ensure the board is straight.

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Nail your board to your wall. Be sure to double check that you don’t have any electrical wires running directly where you are nailing.

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Add your second board on top and place a quarter at each end to create a space between the boards. I used a quarter but you can also use a shim or anything really that creates the desired gap width. I have even seen a paint stick used for extra wide gaps.

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When I added planks to our family room wall, I used 1″ thick tongue and groove knotty pine. It is much more expensive than using plywood but I wanted something substantial and elegant for our family room so tongue and groove worked the best for that project. You can use any type of wood, even MDF as long as it’s at least 1/4″ thickness.

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If you are using plywood like I am, be aware that many of your boards may be warped. Simply turn the board over and you will most likely get the board to fit appropriately to the wall.

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My grandfather thinks I have absolutely lost my mind. He cannot figure out why I would be wasting my time adding plywood to an already “good” wall. You wait, he will definitely be sitting in her during the summer with me.

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Once you finish, you may need to add corner pieces to the ends to give the wall a more finished look.

Here is the completed wall all prettied up! Be sure to check out the entire pool house makeover here.

how to plank a wall

I still need to add trim around the top and sides as well as decorate. That is the best part! This space is just about finished with the exception of curtains. I cannot find any that I like that are a decent price so I may make some, maybe burlap curtains. We only added planks to one of the walls as we added board and batten to the other three walls. This planked accent wall only took me two hours to add the planks and paint. Super easy and a great way to add texture and character to any wall. Hoping to share final pictures soon!

PS. Be sure to check out our outdoor DIY Curtain Rod tutorial if you are looking for an inexpensive way to make an industrial style rod that is rust and weather resistant.


Meet Jessica

What started as a hobby, Jessica’s blog now has millions of people visit yearly and while many of the projects and posts look and sound perfect, life hasn’t always been easy. Read Jessica’s story and how overcoming death, divorce and dementia was one of her biggest life lessons to date.


  1. ValenzMom a/k/a Helen says:

    The planked wall looks just perfect. I can’t wait to see how the whole space comes together!

  2. I don’t why my browser doesn’t show any picture on your page 🙁

  3. I can’t wait to see this all done! This is going to be amazing!

  4. Love your planked wall. I’ve always wanted to give this a try!

  5. Did you sand the wood at all after ripping it?

  6. I love your wall! Can you paint the boards before you nail them on the wall? Do you have to leave a space in between the boards for expansion or is it just for looks? Thank you so much!

    1. Hi, you sure can paint before but you will have to repaint once you fill the nail holes. I used a quarter to space the boards out. I did it just for looks 🙂

  7. <3 Just Lovely! <3 We had a pile of old barn wood from my grandparents 100 yr old barn tear down (it was falling down and a hazard). We ran them through a planer, laid them out on a huge tarp on the driveway, rolled white paint over them all, then I took an orbital sander to distress the paint, and used a light colored stain over it all. Then we put it all up on the ceiling of our little pool house (glorified shed whose main use is wintering patio furniture and pool toys). A stupendous amount of work but worth every second of it. We added a beam to the peak, hanging lantern from the beam, an antique quilt on the wall, and a daybed made from a free queen size bed from Craigs List. We also got a free armoire from Craigs List and painted and distressed to match the ceiling. It holds the winter trampoline cover, pool shock, beach towels, etc. Even our French doors came from Craigs. 🙂 I just love up-cycling and make-overs and the sense of accomplishment when all is said and done.
    And to answer your question – Noooooo!!!!! I could not live with 4 generations of family, LOL. Son-in-law is too up-tight and strict with the grand kids. I wouldn't have a tongue left from biting it all day. And mom is too OCD. I would have to be cleaning the house and hand picking weeds from the lawn 24/7 and never a minute to enjoy the pool to keep her content. Oy! I'm having a nervous breakdown just imagining this scenario. So kudo's to you all for accomplishing this amazing feat without a mass murder suicide involved, LOL.

  8. Hello, love all of your ideas & projects! Could you please tell me where you purchased the 2 hanging metal baskets???

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