Easy How to DIY a Wood Planked Ceiling

October 29, 2020

Hi! I'm Nicole

Fearless DIY. Sharing building project tutorials and interior design tips. Let’s build something beautiful together. For more projects, design tips and behind the scenes, follow me @designtobuild.nicole

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A couple weeks ago, I published a post all about how to make a tray ceiling a focal point. My technique for achieving this look was two very easy DIY’s. Today, I want to focus solely on how to plank a ceiling. So this post will be very similar to the one two posts ago, but I wanted to break it down and give you an individual reference for each of these techniques.


First, you have a couple decisions to make…

***Which way do you want your carsiding boards to run? I chose for mine to run in the same direction as my flooring. I also knew I wanted my boards to run parallel with the longer length of the room. This makes the room feel bigger.

***What length of boards do you want to use? Choosing to make it seamless and therefore taking it the entire length of the ceiling is a great look, however, much easier if you have extra hands. Those boards are heavy and awkward. For my project, I knew I would be adding beams, so I wasn’t concerned with the seams.

But hold up, we’re not ready to attach the carsiding just yet. First find your studs, if you’re planning on adding beams. You won’t be able to find them once all of your carsiding is up, so now is the time to mark the studs using painter’s tape or a pencil on the WALL–not the ceiling! Remember, you’re covering that up. 🙂

Now you’re ready to actually attach the carsiding. You’ll want to find the center of the ceiling. Line up the first board and attach using a nailgun….

car siding on ceiling

From here it’s easy…Just work your way across the ceiling, securing the tongue into the groove. I use a mallet to gently tap the boards together. This avoids damage to your carsiding. You’ll want to use a nail gun to fasten your boards to the ceiling.

Tip:  Drive your nails in at an angle. This provides a firmer grip.

Girl standing on ladder diying a wood ceiling

Now that you’ve gotten a few boards attached, chances are good that the last board will not fit perfectly. You can do one of two things: a.) measure the width of the board you need and rip it using a table saw, circular saw or jigsaw. OR b.) attach trim pieces (1×2 or 1×4) around the border of your ceiling. I took the easy route and went with option b. 🙂 So, when I came to the end of the ceiling, I moved over to the other side of my center board. And then worked my way to the other end of the ceiling….

planked ceiling using carsiding

You’ll notice my boards do not meet in the middle perfectly. Originally, I thought I would be adding a beam there, so it wouldn’t really matter. However, this plan changed halfway through the project, as is the case with most DIY ventures. So, I had to come up with a different plan for this spacing. I ended up using the same width of trim pieces I used for the perimeter of the tray ceiling and ran that trim piece down the center of the ceiling. It turned out very well and made this mistake go away. 🙂

Now you see it….

Planked ceiling with a crease where the boards meet

Now you don’t…

Carsiding with trim going down the middle

With the same color paint as the carsiding, this trim piece will blend right in and won’t stand out at all. That’s it! So simple! Add paint and you have a beautiful planked ceiling….

black planked ceiling with stained faux beams

Now that the carsiding is finished, we’re ready for the beams. Next week I’ll be sharing how to build beams and attach them to the ceiling. If you can’t wait til next week, this post will show you how to do it now.



Until next time,

Happy Building, Friend!!

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Room Makeovers:

Easy How To Build a Mid Century Modern Accent Wall

How to Make a Tray Ceiling a Beautiful Focal Point

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