Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Putting up wood panelling (on a wall with no beams!!)

...on a wall with no beams!

...the story of how a molehill really can be a mountain..
(and how we overcame this problem!)


In this post, I have a treat for you all: You all get to "meet" my lovely husband (I call him Mr.) and I simply feature as his (useless) assistant!!

We've done it!! We've finally finished re-decorating our bedroom!! I've painted the walls, and the floor...and this weekend just gone, Mr an I put up the wood paneling on the wall behind the bed!

The wood panelling was essential to my design, as part of my grand plan to bring a touch of Scandinavia to our English cottage!

This was supposed to be a quick and easy DIY, but it didn't quite turn out like that!!
I am so glad I had Mr to help me with this one!

Here's what happened, and how we resolved it:

It all started off great:
I, the useless assistant,  held the wood panel up against the wall whilst Mr marked off, using a set square, where he needed to make the cut...then set about "playing" with his new tool: A chop saw!
This made it all the more easy to chop down the wood panelling...
(If you don't have a handy man ,like me, with a chop saw, a normal wood saw will of course do the job... it turned out there was another reason I was glad my handy husband was there for this project: Normally when putting up tongue in groove wood panelling on a wall, it is a simple process of cutting the panelling to size, then simply nailing it in place into the beams in the wall...

Problem was: We could not find the beams in the wall...


Even with a beam detector...
After basically drilling holes in the wall until it resembled a Swiss cheese, we finally found a couple of beams going upright...

But we (Read: I...) wanted the panelling to go upright!! And with no horizontal beams to nail the panelling into, this was a BIG problem...

We tried using some "No More nails", but didn't find it very successful (Although it came in handy later...) We tried screws instead of nails, but this still didn't really work, as the screws didn't get any "purchase" in the plaster board wall!
But Mr. ,being the handy man that he is, finally came up with a solution:
Using plaster board wall plugs !!

Maybe a bit of a long winded way of doing this, but at least it worked: pulling the wood panelling tight to the wall!!

Here's how:
Having cut the wood to size, I, his assistant for the day, held the panelling in place whilst he drilled some small pilot holes through the wood and into the plasterboard wall.
Then we took the wood away and Mr changed to a bigger drill bit and made the holes in the wall just large enough to fit the special plasterboard wall plugs into. With the wall plugs in place, we replaced the wood panelling and Mr countersunk the holes in the wood before screwing it in place...
 ....problem solved!!

When fitting the tongue in groove panels together, use a hammer with a bit of wood to protect the wood panel from any damage as you knock it into place...
Mr is a perfectionist...and kept checking with a spirit level, that the wood panelling was going on straight as he went...If one was a bit out, he would adjust it by not knocking the next bit of panelling all the way into the grove of the previous where needed!

   When we came towards the end of the wall, things got a bit fiddly:
There was two electrical outlets we had to cut around ...which Mr easily manoeuvred by marking the wood and cutting out bits of the panelling with a jigsaw!
Instead of risking drilling into the electrics around the outlet, we simply applied some of the "No more Nails" on the back of the wood (using a tongue stick) around this area, and held in place for a few minutes...See, I told you it would come in handy!!

And when we had attached the very last panel we could fit in, we were left with a 1,5cm gap...
...This was my time to shine...and be useful!!
Luckily, I am a hoarder, and had a wooden list laying around in my messy supply shed (You don't want to know....believe!!) that fit perfectly....ALMOST!!
Another stroke of luck, was that I had purchased the cheapest, most flimsy, wooden panelling I could find!! (???) This was good, because the wood was so soft that we could simply trim away the few millimetres off the panelling using a Stanley knife, to be able to fit that wooden list in at the end!!

And so we were done!! This was supposed to be a quick "bash it up" job, but instead turned into an entire day's work....but we were finally done....or at least Mr was done!! I let him hit the bath whilst I finished up...
 (I tried getting him to take a bow for a photo, but he is oh so camera shy!!) ....time for Junie to take over:

The last thing to do, was to fill all those countersunk screw holes in the panelling with a wood filler (Mr chose to buy a red tinted filler purposed for mahogany....don't ask why...I didn't! I figured: Bless him, he has worked so hard, it shall not be mentioned!!)
Luckily the plan was, all along, to paint the panelling!!

Then the following day, I sanded all that filler flush with the wood!!

I cleaned up all the mess, making sure the room was dust free!! (Hoover-ing the panelled wall) before getting on with the painting!!

First I painted on a white wood primer...(I had just enough left over from when I primed the bedroom floor for painting...I really am "jammy") I cut in the top and bottom of the wall then painted into the grooves in the panelling....I painted it on quite thick as this helped seal any unsightly gaps ... I then rollered on the primer on the surface of the panelling, keeping my paintbrush handy to smooth over any accumulation of paint in the grooves...
I left the primer to dry over night..


Then the following day, which was yesterday, I Painted the panelled wall with a soft sheen brilliant white...using the same technique as mentioned above!
...And that was it: All done!


It was a lot of work, but worth it in the end: The white painted panelled wall just gives a nod to that Scandinavian look that I love, and it brings an element of architectural history to the room... It is not bold or in your face, but never the less a considered design statement that has helped change the feel of the room!!
Now we are just waiting for our purpose built wardrobes to be installed, and
I have some other smaller project for this room, another architectural element and some more fun and arty ones, that I will show you soon, and then it is just adding the finishing touches left before the big reveal...
So stay tuned folks!

I am so excited!!
(and a bit exhausted!!)



Alli Smith said...

I'm sure that I, too, would be the useless assistant. I think your husband (and you) did a great job! Thanks for linking up to our very first Pretty Pintastic Party!

Christine Graves said...

Love the new paneling! and that you didn't get discouraged and quit. Great job!

june olsen said...

Thanks Alli Smith! Lol...I did feel a bit like a spare wheel...!
Christine Graves,,, quitting was out of the question!! Where there's a will theres a way!!

Nadine Thomas said...

That looks lovely. I wanted T&G panelling in the bathroom but haven't quite managed to persuade my husband to get round to it. Maybe in the winter when he isn't out all hours on his bike, lol.

june olsen said...

Nadine Thomas...I've found the best way to get Mr onboard with my decorating plans is to make a start: buy the materials then threaten to do it! The thought of letting me loose with a drill on the wall was all the catalyst he needed to help me with this one! Good luckaXx

Emily said...

This is gorgeous. I love the look of it. I too have a wonderful and crafty husband who is really the muscle of my operations. He just somehow knows how to do this stuff. I give ideas though, so I am not completely useless.

june olsen said...

Thanks Emily! I know right: What would we "brains" do without our "brawns"?? lol

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