before and after

before & after: salvaged-wood wall

by Kate Pruitt

I don’t think I will ever tire of the salvaged-wood wall trend happening right now. How could I? There’s something visual happening with the texture of the varied wood boards and the dimensionality of these walls that is just very appealing, and I don’t think that will go away any time soon. Sarah’s wall is a particularly good example of the incredible impact these walls can have. I love the mix of stained, painted and raw wood pieces — truly stunning. Nice job, Sarah! — Kate

Read more about Sarah’s salvaged-wood wall after the jump!


Time: three days

Cost: $130

Basic Steps: After saving and six years and searching for the perfect blank slate on which to play out our quirky design ideas, my husband and I found this house in Dallas, TX, three months ago. The pros were that the design hadn’t been touched in a good 30 years, but it was a nightmare of olive green, black lacquered fixtures and mirrored walls. In the time since the closing, we’ve ripped out false walls, scraped off six layers of wallpaper and painted everything Behr Ultra Pure White. Apart from hanging our art collection, this wall is the first design project we put into motion.

Last Thursday afternoon, we went to our local salvage yard, put on our gloves and began pulling boards from the 15-foot-high racks of salvaged wood. After work on Friday, we laid out all of the pieces (some siding, some barn wood, some wainscot and a lot of pieces from a deconstructed high-school gym floor. You can see the colors from the school insignia in the green, black, red and coral stripes throughout) outside on our back patio and began working out how they’d fit together visually and geometrically. Some pieces were 2.5 inches wide, some were 4.25 inches, some were 9 inches and the rest fell randomly in-between.

On Saturday morning at 9 am, we started building up from the bottom, using a pneumatic/air compressor nail gun to affix the pieces in a horizontal pattern. (A chop saw was essential to cut the lengths; a jigsaw allowed us to cut holes for the outlets.) We were done by 5 pm, at which point we did a cannonball into the pool to celebrate. DIYers considering creating something like this will want to make sure they have the right tools (I can’t imagine trying to actually hammer all those nails or cut the lengths with a hand saw) and a helper. We are lucky here in Dallas to have a couple really great salvage yards where we could find the wood all in one go, but if you don’t, be patient and start collecting piece by piece. Of course, humor and a good sense of 10th-grade geometry doesn’t hurt. — Sarah

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