Faux Beadboard Techniques

Valery Elias

Traditional beadboard is installed much like paneling. It is then usually painted for a finished look. You can mimic the look of beadboard throughout your home without the hassle or headache of installing it. Instead you can use creative techniques such as painting or wallpapering to simulate the warm look of beadboard.


You can create the look of beadboard with a little bit of paint, a squeegee, painter's tape and a steady hand. For this project, look for most supplies at your local home improvement center or hardware store. Plan accordingly and buy enough paint to cover your project. You will want to purchase a paint with a satin finish in your choice of colors. The color white is very popular to use when painting beadboard. Begin by taping off any areas that you do not want to paint. This will include moldings, the ceiling, and the floor if necessary. Cover any other exposed surfaces with newspaper to avoid paint spills and stains.

Apply a base coat of paint to the wall or other surface with a paintbrush or roller. While the base coat is still wet, apply the top coat. You will want to work quickly in the next step before the paint dries.

Cut grooves into the squeegee with a utility knife that mimic the look of beadboard. Apply the squeegee into the paint on the wall or other surface and create the beadboard design, running from top to bottom of the wall or surface in a straight line, while the paint is still wet. This will create the line effect on the surface. Continue in this manner until you have reached a corner. If the width of the squeegee will not work in the corner, re-paint the area and work backward to accommodate the design. It may be helpful to have a helper with this project; one person can paint and the other can be the squeegee manipulator.

Another alternative to creating a faux beadboard look is to use wallpaper with the design already imprinted on the wallpaper. Look for specialty papers such as this online or through your local home improvement center.