A shaker peg rail is a great way to display decor items. They have become popular in mudrooms and entryways as a replacement for coat racks. In my case, I added one to Sabrina’s closet nursery because cute baby clothes, decor and hats make up functional decor in this tiny woodland themed nursery. This tutorial covers how to create a DIY shaker peg rail, and also a bead board accent wall, which typically goes along with a shaker reg rail.
The perfect space for a shaker peg rail
I am making over my master bedroom closet into a closet nursery. Closet nurseries have become more popular as housing prices have increased, leaving families like my own unable to move into a bigger home. I live in a townhouse with 3 kids. We are trying to maximize every inch of space!
I started off by removing all the closet rails, patching the walls and putting up the wallpaper. This was my 4th time using peel and stick wallpaper. If you’re new to wallpaper, check out my 6 best tips for wallpapering.
Materials to build
- Mitre saw
- Impact driver and drill bits
- Table saw (or have the store cut the pieces)
- Brad nailer
- Stud finder
- 220 girt sandpaper
- Large spade bit
- Beadboard panel. Comes in 4×8′ primed MDF sheet. Depending on the size of your room, you may need several
- Shaker peg hooks. They come in many sizes. I used 5.5″ pegs
- Primed MDF. I used 4″ (which is actually 3.5″ measured)
- Drywall compound
- Drywall knife
- Paint brushes. This is my favourite rubber handled brush
- Paint. I used Sherwin-Williams Touch of Sand 9085 in the emerald line in a satin finish
- Painters tape
- Drop cloth
- Paint rollers
- White caulk
There are 2 parts to this accent wall: Bead board installation and the Shaker Peg Rail build
How to install Bead board
- How to measure Bead board – I measured the wall and took those measurements to the hardware store. I had the hardware store cut down the pieces because a 4×8′ sheet doesn’t fit in my van. I had mine cut to 66″ tall as I have 9 ft ceilings. I find this height to be great to draw the eye up, but still allow the hooks to be accessible to easily hang items (for reference, I am 5’3″).
2. Attaching the bead board panels – I brought up the sheets and dryfitted them before attaching them. I used a level to make sure they were all straight. Then I nailed them in all along the edges using my brad nailer. My walls were not all level. I nailed them in level as we can go in later and fill in small gaps with caulk.
3. Closing up the seams of the bead board – To save money, I opted to make 1 awkward cut (ie patch together 2 leftover pieces) instead of buying another panel. I had to seal the 2 panels to make them look seamless. There was a tiny seam that I closed up using caulk on the vertical seam. Closing up the horizontal seam was a lot harder. I used drywall filler and sanded it smooth. This took a few cycles, but it looks flawless now!
4. Filling the holes – I filled the holes from the nails using drywall filler and sanded smooth with p220 grit sandpaper. Now the walls are ready to paint!
5. Painting Bead board – I’ll admit, painting bead board is kind of a pain. As soon as I started painting, I realized that bead board required you to either spray the panels before installation, or brush the paint into every single groove. Since I already had nailed it to the wall, I didn’t have much choice. I brushed vertically over each bead board panel groove.
How to make a Shaker Peg Rail
- Create your base for the Shaker Peg Rail – I cut my piece of MDF to length using my mitre saw
- Planning for the wall studs – I had checked the wall in the room for where the studs in the wall are. I marked my MDF piece for where the studs were. I want to avoid putting a peg in the spot where there is a stud when I am securing the rail to the wall. I would much rather nail into the stud to ensure it holds the weight of the shaker peg rail.
- Marking your peg hooks – I evenly spaced out my peg hooks on my MDF trim. Use this calculation to help you:
number of pegs + 1/ length of board = spacing between each peg
I even traced the little circle of the peg on that spot. If it was on a spot with a stud marking, I moved it over 1/2″. This is a small enough distance that it won’t be noticeable
- Make the holes for the peg hooks – Use a spade bit that is the exact same size as your pegs to create a hole. I practiced on scrap MDF first. If it is a bit tight, simply wiggle the drill to make the hole a teeny tiny bit bigger. If you go up to the next size spade bit, the hole will be too big. You want a super tight fit.
5. Attach the peg hooks to the trim – Add wood glue around the base of the peg hook and insert it into the hole. If there is glue that overflow, clean it up immediately with a damp cloth otherwise it will leave a residue.
6. Secure the hooks – Use a mallet to secure the hooks into the hole. Do not use a hammer. Using a hammer risks breaking the peg hook.
How to attach a Shaker Peg Rail
Note: Initially I had planned to paint the entire rail and hook. But at the last minute, I decided I liked the look of the wood. So I had to tape off the base of the peg hooks to avoid getting any painters tape on them. You can skip this step if you’re painting the entire board.
If you plan to leave the hooks natural wood, I would drill the holes, then attach the MDF trim to the wall first. Once it’s secure to the wall, then use the wood glue and use the mallet to hammer in the hooks.
- Attach the shaker peg rail to the bead board – Attach the peg rail to the wall using your brad nailer. Make sure it’s level. Ensure the peg rail is being driven into the studs to ensure it does not fall off when you hang items from the hooks.
2. Add the finishing touches – Fill the holes with drywall compound and sand it smooth using p200 grit sandpaper.
3. Remove the tape and admire the beautiful and functional space you created!