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Decor Q&A: Applying Wainscoting?

Q.

The Nest Q&A

How do you apply wainscoting to walls?

A.

First, open the wainscoting packages and leave them in the room you’ll be putting them in for 72 hours before you begin the project. Why? Because wood expands, bends, or shrinks according to its environment, and you have to let it acclimate.

Next, "plumb" the walls to make sure there are no dips or gaps, or the sheets won’t apply evenly. If you need to, sand down the bumps. If you have concave dips in the walls, “fur them out” with furring strips (these are slices or pieces of wood or metal that you nail to the wall to create an even surface).

The last step: Use a level when you apply the baseboard around the room so you can line up the wainscoting perfectly. Finally, nail or glue the wainscotting to the wall along the baseboard (use product-specific glue!), and top it with the chair rail. Congrats -- you now have a whole new look!
Nestperts Judy Scott of The Home Depot; Tom Silva from This Old House

-- The Nest Editors

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