Halls, Foyers & Closets

DIY Board & Batten Staircase

This DIY board and batten staircase didn't take long to complete, but it completely transformed the space. It's a great project that will give a big impact!

We’re nearing the end of the basement renovations, and I am looking forward to having this space completed and in order.  Today I’ll be sharing pictures and tips on our newly updated DIY board and batten staircase; and I’m in love!

I am also grateful that Metrie partnered with me on this project and provided all the interior finishing products :)

Let’s take a look at the space way back when we first started the basement updates:

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The staircase going into the basement was originally painted the dark gray (“Taupe”) that’s in the upstairs areas.  Actually – it had a bunch of patches of different paint colours and I painted everything lighter throughout the basement.

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Last week I taped off the area to prep for the board and batten staircase, and painted everything below white.  We originally had panelling to the right of the door, but we removed it when we added the bathroom last year.

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I then marked all the studs (they are clearly all over the place) with my chalk line and enlisted my mother-in-law to help complete the board and batten staircase.  She also helped with the board and batten in our upstairs hallway!

For the horizontal pieces (one along the bottom and one at the top) I used a 3-1/2″ Poplar Flat Stock, which is 3/4″ thick.

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If you are installing board and batten along your staircase, then this will be the hardest cut. Line up your two pieces until their edges touch; mark the point on both pieces and cut accordingly.

I started with the bottom piece along the stairs, and then copied the same measurements on another piece for the top.  When I did the hallway upstairs, I installed the horizontal pieces first, and cut all the vertical boards to match.  This time, because I was working at an angle, I cut all the vertical pieces first, then installed the top piece afterwards.  For the vertical boards, we used Metrie’s 2-1/2″ Poplar Flat Stock, which is the same thickness as the horizontal pieces.

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Notice how the boards don’t line up with the studs? Make sure to glue any pieces not on a stud for added adhesion!

I always like my vertical boards to line up on the edges of the walls, so we started with the small section of the staircase first.  That way we could find a spacing that looked good, and copy it onto the long side.  I believe we had about a 9″ gap from inside edge to inside edge.

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Note to self: make sure to use the side of the board without the label!

We then lined up the pieces on the right/long side to match what we had just installed, and spaced the following ones as evenly as possible.  If you took a measuring tape, there would be a bit of a difference from the top gap to the bottom, but we tried to blend them as best as we could.

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On the one side, we had a huge bump-out in the drywall.  I ended up having to shim a section, but once it was all filled it, you barely notice it.

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Do you spot Tootsie on the couch!?

I then lightly sanded the edges to remove any slivers of wood and caulked all the seams (because I would be painting the boards white to blend in with the wall).

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The poplar was actually super nice, and I was a little bit sad that I wouldn’t get to stain it.  Ha, it even matched the baby gate!  Funny (not funny?) story, I took down the gate to caulk the last section, and wouldn’t you know it that the mister decided to come see me and knocked over my little bucket of water…

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Two coats of primer later, and the board and batten staircase is pretty much complete!  (I also wiped off the chalk lines before I panted, but I should have done that before I caulked).

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I’ll probably go back in and patch any gaps (I like my moulding to be seamless), but everything looks great :)

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Just a bit of gray paint touch-ups too :)

The finishing pieces lined up perfectly with the stair rail, and now that it is painted white, everything blends well together.

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Check out the progress of this section of the board and batten staircase!

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Now the staircase into the basement is cohesive with the upstairs hallway; and I LOVEEEEEE the way it looks :)

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Ha, the Husband actually hasn’t been home to see everything, so I’m hoping he’s amazed too!

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This DIY board and batten staircase didn’t take long to complete at all, but it completely transformed the space. The longest time will be spent trying to figure out your first few angles, but once that is done, everything goes much quicker. Just make sure you have a helper to hold the pieces of flat stock :)

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And in case you missed if from one of the photos above, here is the tiniest sneak peek at the “door area” in the basement. I was originally going to wrap the board and batten around, but I wasn’t sold on the mismatched look of the panelling.

Stay tuned :)

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