Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY

Sharing is caring!

Wood Slat Wall

Are you guys ready for this?! Today we’re going to walk you through how we did our wood slat wall in our new living room space.

While we’re done with the carpentry/construction of the wall, we still need to get the lights hung, the hardware on the doors, and it all styled up.

But the slat wall is DONE!!! And we’re in love. So we wanted to share with you how to DIY this baby.

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY

Gather Tools & Materials 

You can also rent these power tools from your local hardware store if you don’t own or want to invest in buying. 

Plan out Design

Fist, you need to plan out your overall design for where you will place your slat wall. It could be in a living room as an accent wall, behind your headboard, in a cozy nook, down your hallway, the options are endless.

Make sure you know the full overall design of whichever space you’re putting this in before you get started on the slat wall. 

Planning out what we were going to do with the wall was the hardest part for us. We knew we wanted a slat wall, but Jamie and I couldn’t decide on the rest of the wall.

Floating shelves, lights, cabinetry, benches, etc. The reason why this was so important was if we were adding cabinetry, we needed to install those before we did the slat wall.

And if we were doing floating shelves, Jamie needed to ensure proper anchoring before the slat wall was put in. And if we were doing picture lighting, he had to get the electrical wired in before we put the slat wall up.

We also decided to add crown molding to this accent wall, which needed to be installed before applying the slat panels. 

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY

As you can tell, if you want to avoid a lot of unnecessary work, doing a lot of the design elements you may be incorporating first, before installing the slat wall, will help avoid additional work, costs, and mistakes. 

In the end, we decided on revision #8 for our wall design – floating cabinetry, picture lighting, and no open shelving. 

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 1

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 2

Cut Down Strips of Wood

Once you know your design and have gathered your materials, it’s time to get to work! 

Using our table saw, we cut down (4) 4x 8′ sheets of MDF, we cut 1/2″ strips and placed them 3/4″ wide apart on the wall. If you don’t have a table saw, you can also buy this pre-cut, but it does cost more. 

Note: Jamie said if we did this again, he would use real wood. The MDF wood grains are hard to paint, and it absorbs the paint fast, so additional coats of paint were needed.

However, it would have cost 4-5x more than the MDF. So we saved a ton by using MDF over real wood.

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 3

Paint Strips of Wood/MDF

From those four sheets of 4×8 MDF boards, we got around 250 (ish) slats of wood for our wall. And then it was painting time! 

We created a little DIY paint booth in our shop and sprayed three sides of the boards. We didn’t do all four sides because Jamie knew he would have to nail the boards up, fill the nail holes, and repaint them, so he avoided an unnecessary step. 

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 4

We used Tricorn Black by Sherwin Williams for our accent wall in their Emerald Urethane Enamel.

We painted all of our doors and trim in this color and finish, so we had leftovers on hand; otherwise, you probably wouldn’t necessarily need to invest in the Emerald line of paint. 

Once painted, we popped them up our ladder to let them dry on. Who would have known this would make such a handy drying rack! 

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 5

 

Install Slat Planks

Once all the boards were dry, we got to installing the boards. One by one, Jamie measured the wall, cut down each piece with his miter saw to fit the height of the wall needed, applied liquid nails adhesive, secured to the wall, and nailed into place with his nail gun.

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 6

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 7

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 8

To ensure each slat plank was the same width from each other, Jamie used 3/4″ tile spacers as well as his laser level to ensure each plank was perfectly straight. 

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 9

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 10

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 11

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 12  

Fill Nail Holes

Once all of the slat plank boards are up, it’s the fun part…time to fill all of those nail holes! One by one using wood filler, fill every single one. See all of those white spots, that’s where Topher has filled in the nail holes. 

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 13

Sand

Once all of the nail holes are filled with wood filler, it’s time to sand the wall down using an orbital sander – sand before you paint (we didn’t grab a photo of this).

We sanded before a coat of paint and after one coat of paint because Jamie could tell the walls weren’t perfectly soft to touch, and it was bothering him.

Sanding after your first coat of paint won’t be necessary if you’re walls are looking good! 

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 14

Paint Wall

And then it’s painting time! As we mentioned, we used Tricorn Black by Sherwin Williams in their Emerald Urethane Enamel.

And we rolled and brushed that final fourth side while installed on the wall. You might want a tiny, tiny artist paintbrush as well to get into those tiny grooves in some areas. 

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 15

Dance Party

DANCE PARTY!!! YOU DID IT! And that’s a wrap.

We’re thinking from start to finish it took Jamie a good 40 hours with the help of 15 hours from Topher, so if you’re doing this project solo plan for a good seven days of hard work.

I had to give Jamie a good two weeks before I asked him if he thought it was worth it or not.

Those first two weeks were a little rocky as he kept saying, we’re never doing that again! But now that he can kick back and relax and admire his hard work, he loves the look of how it turned out and is glad we went in this direction.

So if you’re up for a little challenge and want a unique accent wall, you can do it! 

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 16

And besides designing it out, I really didn’t even pick up the hammer and help Jamie out, so I can say I’ve been obsessed and was screaming in Jamie’s ear every day as he progressed about how much I LOVE IT!!!!!

We still need to get our picture lighting up, hardware installed, and the space styled…but even un-styled…this wall makes me so darn happy!! 

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 17

 

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 18

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 19 

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 20

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 21

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 22

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 23

 

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY

Whether you're new to construction or a seasoned vet, we hope these instructions help you build your slat wall effectively!

Materials

  • Wood Slats- (4) 4 x 8 sheets of MDF
  • Paint
  • Liquid Nails
  • Caulk
  • Wood Filler

Tools

  • Table Saw (if you don’t have, no problem)
  • Miter Saw
  • Orbital Sander
  • Tape Measure
  • Trim Nailer
  • Tile Spacers
  • Laser Level

Instructions

    1. Plan out Design

    2. Gather Tools and Materials

    3. Cut Down Strips of Wood

    4. Paint Strips of Wood/MDF

    5. Install Slat Planks

    6. Fill Nail Holes

    7. Sand

    8. Paint Wall

Vertical Wood Slat Wall | How to DIY 25

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links to purchase some of our favorite products to complete this DIY project. This does no harm to you. Thanks for supporting our small business.

Share this post
0 0 votes
Article Rating
Subscribe
Notify of
guest

3 Comments
Oldest
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
trackback

[…] We have a full blog post with a tutorial of what went into this wall so that you can DIY it too. […]

trackback

[…] know how we love a good slat wall! And we have a full tutorial for you here. The c2s crew got the slat wall put together and then we […]

trackback

[…] know how we love a good slat wall! And we have a full tutorial for you here. The c2s crew got the slat wall put together and then we […]