Are you a pre-war soul trapped in a post-war apartment? Do you long for the charm of dinged up floors and beadboard, but instead have poured concrete and white drywall? In a competitive market, you often take what you can get—and oftentimes that means white-cube apartments that might not be your style. Just because your rental could double as an avant garde art gallery doesn’t mean you need to settle. When your apartment needs some personality, paint it on! Try out this easy hack for creating faux wainscoting in your own home + add some prewar charm overnight!

You’ll Need

    painter’s tape
    a yardstick
    1-inch brushes
    a foam roller

For paint, we used these Sherwin-Williams colors: Spare White for the walls, Oceanside and Pink Shadow for the beadboard stripes, and Jadite in for the floor. The walls were painted in matte and the floors in semigloss.

1. Tape off your moldings. Add vertical painter’s tape lines for your baseboard (roughly 6 inches above your floor, according to personal preference) and the top of your wainscoting (we made ours 3-feet high). Place vertical painter’s tape lines separated by about one inch to create the lines of your “beadboard” (we used a yardstick to separate the lines evenly).

2. Paint! Paint your beadboard “stripes” with alternating colors. Allow to dry completely. Remove painter’s tape and apply a horizontal line of painter’s tape at the bottom edge of your stripes to block off your baseboard. Paint the floor and “baseboard” the same color. Allow to dry. Done!

Get the Look

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