Dining Room Accent Wall
Our son and daughter in law (DIL) wanted to create an accent wall in their dining room. Monte and I had done something similar in our guest bedroom so we were all in and ready to give them a hand.
There were a couple things to work around but after some thought and discussion we were ready to get going. They have a counter height dining table and a gorgeous light over the table so an accent wall would complete the look.
We were trying to decide whether to include the doorway into the small hallway that leads into the master bedroom. After a bit of discussion we decided it was best to not include the doorway in the accent wall.
Step 1 was removing the baseboard on the wall and framing out the accent part of the wall. So far so good.
They trimmed the wall quickly with 3 1/2″ primed mdf baseboard. I originally thought we’d leave the existing baseboard but my husband in his wisdom pointed out the width of the original baseboard and the trim we were using wouldn’t match up. After trimming the perimeter of the wall Monte and our son snapped a chalk line to show where the 2×4′ studs were so they could securely nail the boards to the wall. Only nailing into drywall just doesn’t work.
After the wall was trimmed and the interior boards marked they began laying out the design. Our creative DIL decided she wanted to create diamonds on the wall. There was a lot of thought and measuring put into the design so the diamonds are centered and equal in size. We wanted the same proportion of partial diamonds on each side and top to bottom. Thankfully our son was able to figure out a formula that worked for the space. Then it was time to draw the pattern on the wall.
We crazily thought it would be a simple process but it took a lot of talking, thinking and redoing. Since Monte and I have something similar in our guest room we thought it would be easy. The difference between what we’ve done and what we were trying to do was the geometric shapes. Monte and I did squares, which were super easy with just a little math. The diamonds have some crazy angles and a little harder to figure out. One of these days I’m going to realize that I underestimate how long a project will take. DIL and I expected to be painting by the end of the day. That didn’t quite work out how we planned but I knew we’d get it figured out.
When a project isn’t going as hoped I persuade Monte to walk away and start fresh another day. Or the persuasion comes from how late it is, thankfully. Monte is amazing, he always figures it out after he ‘dreams’ about it for a day or two if needed. The next day we made a quick stop at home depot to pick up this sliding T bevel that would help with the crazy angels.
These side pieces were the most difficult to figure out because they needed to be cut from 2 different sides with 2 different angels. After that was worked out Monte made a ‘template’ for the rest of the angels so it was a matter of measuring the length and cutting the predetermined angel. They marked the center of the board and lined it up with the diamond marking on the wall. Lining up the center of the trim was important to keep consistency in the dimensions of the diamonds. We were really making progress.
For some of the shorter pieces they decided to add PL400 to the back of the board for added adhesion since there would be less secure backing to nail it too.
The hanging only took about 3 hours after the angels were worked out and the template was made. Then it was time to caulk a vital step in making a project look complete. Monte decided he wanted to get it caulked before we left them for the night so it would have time to dry and be ready for painting the next day.
It is looking good. The chalk lines wiped off easily with a damp paper towel. Next step paining.
I began by taping off the edge by the small hallway and along the floor. I have done a lot of painting and have a very steady hand so I prefer not to tape the inner walls and along the ceiling. I do a better job without the tape. There was a lot of brush work. I trimmed along the edges of the diamonds and filled in their points because a roller just wouldn’t work. After trimming the edges and points on the diamonds I rolled inside the diamonds and along all the trim faces. In hindsight you could have painted the wall before starting the project and paint the boards before installation. I’m not convinced it would have been any quicker or easier. There is always the chance of the wall getting damaged and it would have needed a quick coat anyway after the nail holes are filled and everything caulked.
It was looking amazing after just one coat. I love the magic of paint. It is an inexpensive way to make a change to a room. On a side note Monte was thrilled after laying out the design that they didn’t have to cut around the plug or light switch. Huge bonus.
The finished dining room accent wall looks amazing. DIL is thrilled with the way it turned out. I think it looks stunning. It was a little more complicated then we originally thought it would be but once Monte wrapped his head around the best way to make it happen and our son was able to figure out the angels it went together relatively smoothly.
The total cost for the wall was $80 for the primed mdf boards, $20 for the T bevel that helped with the angels (which we also now have on hand for the next project involving angels), $10 for caulking and we already had paint which was previously purchased for a different project. It is under $150 for a 13×9″ wall even if you need to purchase paint, a stunning improvement to the space.