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Design The Space

Installation Instructions | Maintenance | Cedar Planking

1. Installation of Natural Aromatic Cedar Planks

IMPORTANT - Acclimate the product
Before installing solid aromatic cedar planks, remove the planks from their packages and place them in the area where they will be installed and allow the pieces to acclimate for a minimum of 24 hours prior to installation. Like all natural wood, cedar will expand and contract as its moisture content changes. This acclimation / waiting period helps prevent warping or gaps after the closet is completed.  Recommended for interior use, only.

Step 1 - Measure
Measure "in inches" the surface(s) you wish to cover to determine square footage needed. If a closet, measure "in inches" the width and height of each wall of the closet. Multiply each surface length by its width to come up with square inches.  If you have multiple surfaces, add the square inch totals together, then divide the total square inch number by 144 to come up with the total square feet needed.  Each of our kits covers approximately 15 square feet so to determine the number of kits needed, divide the total square footage to be covered by 15.  You might want to order additional boxes to accommodate staggering and finish cutting scrap.

Step 2 - Determine your lay out
Lay out the planks in the order in which they will be installed, spreading out prominent color and veined planks evenly, and staggering the ends for a random appearance. Set aside a few of the most knot-free pieces to use later, to fill in gaps.

Although cedar planks can be applied vertically, diagonally or horizontally, a horizontal installation is recommended for most do-it-yourselfers (DIY).

Step 3 - For closet use
If present, remove shelves, hanger rods, moldings, etc. from the closet. If using nails, locate wall studs using a stud finder and mark a center line along each stud to indicate where nails are to be driven. (Standard studs are 16" on center.)

Step 4 - Horizontal installation
Place the grooved edge against the floor, beginning in a bottom corner. (If you are installing shiplap, place bottom strip so lower lap cannot be seen and top lap is visible.)


Step 5 - Nail size
Nail at stud mark directly through the face of the plank, using 1-1/2" panel nails if going through gypsum wallboard and 1" nails if installing directly over studs. In older homes with plaster and lath, use 2" nails.

Adhesive is recommended if planks are being installed vertically.

Step 6 - Type of Adhesive
If you choose to use adhesive, subfloor adhesive is recommended because it will provide a solid bond that will not be weakened by the natural cedar oil present in the planks.

Step 7 - Adhesive Tip
Using subfloor adhesive: apply along stud lines and at top and bottom of plank. Be sure to read and follow the manufacturer's safety and ventilation instructions when using adhesives.

Step 8 - Complete full bottom row
Once the first piece is in place, continue that row across the length of the wall. To finish the row, saw one piece to make a perfect fit. Use the remainder of that piece to start the next row. Continue until the entire wall is covered. Completely line one wall before starting another.

Step 9 - Gaps at floor or ceiling
Cut the pieces that were set aside to fill in gaps along the floor base, corners or ceiling - or install baseboard or top trim moldings for a professional finish. When working around doorways, run the planks all the way up to the trim. Cutting and fitting is usually required above doorways also.

After completing four walls, you will have gained skill at cutting and fitting. Put this skill to use in finishing your ceiling, floor and the back of the closet door for complete seasonal storage.

Step 10 - base and/or top crown molding
Install molding for a professional finish.

Do not stain or varnish. Read the Maintenance tips at the bottom of this page.

Have you found a unique way to use your planking that we should know about? What about a helpful installation tip? Share it with us!


2. Cedar Planking Closet Lining Care and Maintenance - Restoring the Cedar Scent

Our products require no finishing or sealer.  In fact, to do so would seal in the aroma and defeat the purpose of the product.  Over time, cedar oils may crystalize on the surface of the panels or planks, sealing in some of the aroma.  The fresh scent can easily be regenerated with a light sanding as needed every few years.

If a light sanding does not restore the scent to your aromatic cedar, then we suggest applying a cedar oil to the surface of your planks. 

Tips for Increasing the Longevitiy of Cedar Closets

 by Lisa Adams, guest blogger and CEO and designer, LA Closet Designs,


A cedar closet is a beautiful, aromatic and efficient way to store clothing in the home. Cedar is a popular lining for closets because of its natural ability to repel insects and discourage mildew. However, after time, the cedar oil evaporates, the wood pores become clogged and the scent may fade. Rapid changes in temperature and humidity can also damage the cedar by creating cracks in the finish and wood. So, here are a few tips if your cedar closets need a little rejuvenation, there are steps they can take to revive effectiveness.

Before you begin, make sure you have the proper tools – dust mask, fine-grain sandpaper, cedar oil and clean rags. Next, empty the closet’s contents. This will keep dust and cleaning products off your clothing and make your work easier. Then, lay down a tarp or sheet of plastic to protect the floor, and drape plastic over the opening of the closet to prevent the spread of sanding dust. Lastly, put on your dust mask and start dusting and wiping down the entire closet. The best way to do this is to use your vacuum’s brush attachment and run it over every part of the closet. Lastly, wipe the closet down with a damp, soft rag.

Once the closet is completely dry, use a piece of sandpaper to sand down all the cedar in the closet. Move the sandpaper back and forth in long, overlapping strokes with the grain, using a constant medium pressure. Sanding releases the aromatic oils in the wood that repel moths, so you should start to smell your closet’s re-emerging scent. Next, vacuum the cedar again, as was done in the prep phase. Then, go over the vacuumed areas with a tack cloth to remove the remaining fine particles of sanding dust. Lastly, apply a small amount of cedar oil to a clean cloth and rub the oil into the cedar to refresh the smell and enhance the appearance.

Our cedar planks are recommended for interior use, only.