WAINSCOTING

Beadboard wainscoting.

Want to change a room from ordinary to extraordinary? Cover the walls with a chair rail cap over beadboard wainscoting and create a room with warmth and charm. The original beadboard in many older homes is a thick wall cladding of tongue-and-groove boards, topped with a chair rail that protects wall surfaces, especially in a dining area where chair pushback can be damaging. Today you can use a lighter beadboard that comes in 4-by-8 sheets of 1/4-inch thick panels installed about 4 or 5 feet high and finished with a deep cap rail, often called a plate rail, to hold decorative items.

A carpenter will charge $1,418, which includes labor and material, to install 150 square feet of beadboard wainscoting capped with a chair rail molding in a 10-by-12-foot room. If you have carpentry skills and tools, you can buy the material for $600 and do it yourself and save 58 percent. The beadboard can be fastened to the wall with construction adhesive, or on furring strips nailed to the wall. To finish the wainscot sand it lightly before priming and apply two coats of finish or paint. For more information and instructions go to www.newenglandclassics.com.

To find more DIY project costs and to post comments and questions visit www.diyornot.com.

Pro Cost -- DIY Cost -- Pro time -- DIY Time -- DIY Savings -- Percent Saved

$1,418 -- $600 -- 14.0 -- 20.0 -- $818 -- 58 Percent