I’d like your opinions about the wainscot design for my dining room remodel.
We are doing an arts & crafts style remodel, with 5′ high painted wainscot (block panels with no coping or cove molding) in the dining room and front entry. I was planning to use 3/4″ poplar or MDF to make the panel frames, and have the walls skim coated smooth (they have orange peel texture now). I’m hiring a pro to to the taping and finishing, including the skim coating. The contractor says it’s pretty difficult to get the walls completely smooth. Will the 3/4″ reveal in wainscot panels look OK this way, or would I be better off to glue 1/4″ MDF panel inserts in the fields of the paneling (with rabbets in the frames) and not bother with skim coating the wall texture?