Build an Interior Wall With Pocket Doors

Do you want two rooms where once there was one? Just follow these step-by-step instructions.


Materials and Tools:

2-by-4-inch boards
1-by-2-inch boards
45-minute joint compound
2 pocket doors
two 3-foot pocket-door hardware sets
1¼-inch drywall screws
wood glue
molding to match existing base and crown molding
220-grit sandpaper
drywall tape
electric miter saw
hammer and nails or nail gun
cordless drill
measuring tape
taping knife
mud knife
utility knife


1. Cut and remove crown and base molding where you want to build the dividing wall. Be careful not to damage the wall.

frame 1


frame 1

2. Glue and screw together the 2-by-4s to build a pony wall (a smaller, non-load-bearing wall) for hanging the track for the pocket doors. Attach to the ceiling by screwing through the frame into the ceiling joists. Make sure the frame is level.

frame 31


frame 31

3. Install a bottom plate by nailing a 2-by-4 to the floor, making sure to keep the bottom plate and the top of the pony wall level with each other.

frame 15


frame 15

4. Finish framing the wall for drywall by nailing the 1-by-2s nine inches apart to the pony wall at the top and the bottom plate on the floor.

5. Install the door track, according to manufacturer’s instructions, by screwing up through the track into the pony wall.

frame 1


frame 1

6. Measure and cut drywall to size, and attach it to the studs with 1¼-inch screws. Note: Be careful when attaching trim and drywall not to screw or nail the pocket doors open, which can happen if the nails or screws are too long.

frame 1


frame 1

7. Apply a thin layer of joint compound to joints. Press tape into compound and cover with another layer of compound. Cover screw heads with compound to fill depressions. Spread a second layer of compound over joints, feathering out to minimize seams. Let dry and then sand mudded area smooth.

frame 8


frame 8

8. Prime and paint pocket doors as desired and let dry.

9. Attach wheels to the tops of the doors. Hang the doors by inserting the wheels into the track.

10. Cut the crown, base and door molding to fit, using the miter saw. Attach with a nail gun or hammer and nails.

11. Prime and paint the wall as desired.

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