Last week, while talking about my DIY picket fence we left off with putting in the short posts and the very tall arbor posts. The fence is coming along, but with Christmas and some cold and rainy weather, we’re sort of in a “hold” pattern.
Some readers have offered some tips on how to make this job easier. I knew this was going to be a tedious project, due to the fact that I wanted a very specific look for my new fence. Panels weren’t an option because I didn’t like the look of the pre-made panels—vinyl or otherwise. Regular gothic picket fence panels have the pickets spaced too far apart to suit me.
As soon as I got the first batch of pickets cut and dog-eared I worked on establishing a pattern for my diy panels.
After explaining the pattern to Rodney, he used a piece of my scrap plywood to draw a jig.
We laid out the pickets to see how much of a “dip” the pickets will make once they are installed. I’ll show you more details on that later in this post.
Simpson Strong Tie Fence Brackets
Meanwhile, it was time to secure and install the 2x4 rails. My friends at Simpson Strong-Tie supplied the FB24Z fence brackets for this purpose.
Rodney measured and recorded the exact length of all of the 2x4 rails and cut them. After cutting all the 2x4’s, he routed all of the edges of every 2x4 to make them look nicer.
As Rodney was measuring for the brackets . . .
. . . and installing them with the nails
I carried all the 2x4’s to the proper section. (they had all been numbered as we cut them)
These are the nails that were used to secure the Simpson Strong-Tie brackets.
These are the fasteners we used to (eventually) secure the 2x4’s into the brackets.
We actually put in all the 2x4’s into the brackets, then went back a few days later to add the fasteners.
DIY Scalloped Wooden Picket Fence
The 2x4’s fit very securely into the brackets—don’t they look fabulous?
It was so wonderful to see it all coming together.
It may be several more weeks before I actually have a gate here, but it’s all going to happen eventually.
We used a ratchet strap to pull the sections together . . .
. . . then inserted the fasteners, moving along from one section to the next.
Then…. on the best day in the world, the first picket went up! I was absolutely giddy about it.
This is the way we did each section. Rodney did all the measuring, and I did all the cutting. He’s so much better at math than I am…. we kid about it all the time.
DIY Picket Fence Template
Here is the template (jig) that Rodney drew up and cut, it helps us keep the pattern consistent among all of the sections.
Do you see the pattern? It has a slight dip—making it a custom diy picket fence—one of a kind!
So, here’s how we used the jig to do one side of the panel at a time.
The driveway side was done on this first day of putting up pickets. It was like a dream come true, and I couldn’t stop looking at it. Are you loving it as much as I am?
Our next day of work, we rounded the corner and did about 6 more sections, and the arbor portion. The blue arrow? It’s where Rodney lives—but more importantly, check out his new porch he and his wife built over the summer.
We have used my Ryobi nail gun to temporarily secure all the pickets, then we will be using the Simpson Strong-Tie fasteners for our more permanent solution.
Here is a close-up of the template/jig that we have been using to keep the pickets lined up and matching. This seemed to be the best way to keep the pattern uniform throughout the entire scalloped wooden fence project.
I LOVE it! Like I said, we’re in a holding pattern for now—I hope the weather improves without turning too cold.
The plan is to paint it after the chemicals dissipate from the treated wood.
What do you think? Do you know anyone that has a picket fence? Do you love it as much as I do?
You can see more DIY picket fence details here
disclaimer: I would like to thank Simpson Strong-Tie for supplying the brackets and most of the fasteners for this diy picket fence project. This is not a paid content post.
Hi, there! I’m Gail, the author and mastermind behind My Repurposed Life. I’m obsessed with finding potential in unexpected places and believe that with a little hard work and imagination, any old thing can be made useful again—myself included! I hope you’ll enjoy the journey and pick up a few tools along the way… literally!
Absolutely love it! I've been wanting a picket fence--where we live, it'd have to be in the back yard--but that'd be ok--We have French doors looking out into the back yard--that'd be so nice to look out at a picket fence like yours!
It sure does make me smile every time I look out the window!
Amazing job! I have always wanted a picket fence. I can't wait to see it all finished.
That looks great, so updated over the old chain link fence, no wonder you can't stop looking at it.
Julie @ follow your heart woodworking
LOVE it, Gail. We, too have a picket fence, and ours is curved as well (a bit more than yours but very similar) but not dog-eared. It was here when we moved and we are very fortunate because it keeps our dogs in the yard. Most houses here do not have a fence of any kind. Yours looks so neatly done and makes your house look better, don't you think?
I love the traditional look of picket fencing. It let's the wind through whilst still acting as a barrier. We'll done to both of you for all your hard work.
SO great!!! glad you were able to share it with us. can't wait to see it done and what you do with it come Spring!
I don't know anyone personally with a picket fence but yours is perfect and I would love it.
The fence looks awesome! It will be gorgeous once you get it completely finished! Can't wait to see it all done!
WoW Gail- it looks FABulous!
I know -I- would be out there looking at it a lot too!
Sorry the weather is messing with your finish-schedule, but it's got to be better than our 'just now happening' first snow storm, a blizzard--of course! Yuck! Here's to better weather, and more cool projects in the New Year!
Gail it absolutely beautiful. I have always loved picket fences and maybe one day I will get one too. Enjoy!
Love the look I needed a temporary enclosure for our puppies 3 years ago and found the same style at Home Depot but like you they were spaced too far apart so we added little 2x2 in between the pickets . After they got bigger we took it down and gave them full run of the yard. A year later we decided to block off a section behind the back garage.. My husbands work shop. I liked my fence so much we used it there and then we needed to block off the 2 air conditioners lot and behold we used more of the fence. The dogs are really busy. Then they kept going to the far corner of the yard and we couldn't see them again my favorite fence went corner to corner to the 6 foot fence. I know how it feels to find a fence that makes you giddy. I loved the slope of mine also.
Wow Gail, that is some fence. it is just gorgeous and I can just picture it all painted and beautiful flowers growing over the arbor. that fence is a major under taking, I'm so glad you are up for it and have such a great knowlgable neighbor, great job.
I love it, too! 🙂
Christina in FL
Gail, the planning and templates make your new fence look absolutely spectacular! I am thrilled with and for you! 🙂 May the weather cooperate any way you want it to be. The fence lends a charming aspect to your gorgeous yard. Wonderful and congratulations on such an achievement!!
Oh my gosh Gail! It looks so pretty!! Wow I am super impressed with your jig, that is just brilliant! The dip is so perfect, I love how it gives it personality and character! I am so happy for you! I hope the weather holds so you can get it all up soon! Tell Rodney great job too, I am so glad you have such great help!
It's going to look great. I've always loved picket fences, even though a neighbor (a reclusive old lady) put one up to keep us neighborhood kids out of her yard.
chris aka monkey
gorgeous gail happy new year xx
The fence is lookin' good! You have far more talent and energy than this old gal. Can't wait to see the finished product.
This is absolutely beautiful. Keeping everything measured perfectly is what separates the Pro's from the amateurs.
You and Rodney did a beautiful job. I live on a corner lot, too, and it seems like one has an additional burden to look even better on a corner! Kudos! to you both.
you are so right about being on a corner. We have so much more "frontage" to share and show off. 🙂 Thanks for your kind comment!
it's look fabulous!!! and what a great neighbor you have!!!
Fantastic! I would be just as proud and happy...our fence is stockade style, for privacy. I don't love it. This picket fence is very handsome - and CUSTOM! You created a great design, and it will serve you for many decades. Congratulations on an immense job, well done!
Thank you so very much Heather for your sweet comment. I can't wait to get back to the job in the coming weeks. But just getting the pickets up so I can see how it's all going to come together makes me smile every time I look out the window! 🙂