Sprucing Up Our Entryway With a Plank Wall

A few years ago my fantastic father built this bench in our tiny front foyer.

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It’s a small little recessed area next to the front door. Before we had the bench, you walked in our front door and saw… a heap of shoes.

“Welcome to our home, don’t trip.”

Not ideal.

So in addition to providing a place to sit, I asked my Dad to create storage space inside. I lined the inside of the bench with a plastic tablecloth to protect the floor underneath, slid in some  baskets and now the kids can toss their shoes inside when they come in the door.

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We had a cushion made for the top of the bench to make it comfortable and brighten it up. I love the bench, but I wanted to make it look a little more integrated.  So recently, I decided to add a plank wall behind it and paint it the same color as the bench, in hopes of making it look more like a cohesive unit.

I found a great tutorial on the House of Smiths blog. As they suggested, Paul and I went to Home Depot and got one sheet of 4×8, 1/8 inch plywood and had it cut into 6″ strips.

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When we got it home I painted the wall white along with the planks.

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Then we measured the wall space and cut the first plank using a miter saw and tacked it up. It’s important to get the first board level. Most ceilings are crooked, especially in a 1950’s-era house like ours. So use a level to make sure it’s straight–not the ceiling–or the planks will end up looking wonky as you move down.

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We continued working until we reached the bottom, using two nickels to ensure even spacing between the planks.

Once it was done I came back and did a final coat of paint and filled in the perimeter with a bead of caulk to clean up all the ragged edges and little gaps.

And it’s done! I still have a large mirror I’m going to hang in the space, so stay tuned for some additional photos.

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