One of the many things that were on my husband’s and my to-do list when we took possession of our century-old home is the third-floor vaulted ceilings. They were plaster, and because of the heat and dryness that reigns on the third floor, they had badly cracked and began to sag in reverse mountain ranges.
I didn’t want to re-plaster as that’s just a recipe for an expensive disaster, and drywall would have done nothing for the character that we were looking to preserve hence, the perfect choice was beadboard wainscoting.
Right: Elana’s beadboard ceiling
If you’re handy, here’s a good step-by-step for how to install this product yourself (in which case it does make for an almost-shoestring budget), however, if not, the installation is not that much more involved than drywall so the cost of labour shouldn’t be much higher.
Beadboard comes in sheets in a wood or composite material, available at most large hardware stores. While still relatively affordable, it is more expensive than drywall, putting a strike against my shoestring criteria. However, there are cases such as my third floor, where drywall simply wouldn’t do because the walls were also plaster (not to mention crooked), and it is in such cases that beadboard can be considered a cost-effective, attractive and particularly handy solution (sanding drywall on the ceiling is hell, by the way).
The best part about it is that contrary to what you may think, beadboard actually helps to hide crooked lines and misshapen rooms. Drywall, because of the single lines it creates at the meeting points of wall and ceiling actually highlights the lack of right angles. Beadboard on the other hand, which is full of lines, helps to divert your eye with its naturally forgiving and camouflaging pattern.
What do you think? Would you do this on your ceiling?