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Home Attic Style Shiplap wall ideas – 10 ways to use this beautiful feature to dress your walls

Shiplap wall ideas – 10 ways to use this beautiful feature to dress your walls

by Monika Bürger
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Shiplap was used by builders to line rooms to keep them warm and dry, a bit like insulation, and if you have an old property, you might unearth some original boards under layers of wallpaper.

Joanna Gaines has mentioned shiplap often and it’s becoming a popular choice that can change the look of space both visually and practically 

The beauty of shiplap walls is that you can paint them to suit your scheme, and it has a lovely rustic charm and texture that adds authenticity to a space. 

 SHIPLAP WALL IDEAS 

We’ve put together some stunning shiplap wall ideas that will give you an authentic shiplap look. It can transform your walls quickly from dull to interesting and once you start you won’t want to stop.

1. KEEP IT LIGHT AND USE IT TO ENHANCE A DRAMATIC CEILING

white living room with two armchairs and shiplap ceiling painted white
(Image credit: Industville/House Nine Designs)

As mentioned above, shiplap can be painted in any color, it’s wood, after all, so it can be used to enhance a room and accentuate natural features, like this stunning pitched ceiling for example.

What we love about this space is that the walls are plain white and the shiplap is on the ceiling. It creates a striking feature and really adds a lovely tactile feel to this living room due to its handcrafted nature.

Add throw pillows to whatever room needs an extra dose of comfy. Filled with a fluffy faux-down insert, you don’t have to sacrifice comfort for style. Available in four sizes and all measurements are made without pillow insert.

<< More Throw Pillow Styles >>

2. IT CAN BE USED AS A FEATURE WALL

white bedroom with shiplap wall and ensuite bathroom
(Image credit: Industville/House Nine Designs)

Love a shiplap wall idea for your bedroom? They can be used as a subtle feature wall, we say subtle, because you could decide to paint your wall bright red instead of white, but you get the gist! 

In this bedroom it adds to the texture that’s already present – the linen fringed cushions and velvet headboard upholstered with a print, this is where shiplap comes into its own, it enhances a scheme.

Our lightweight, warm Comforters induce sweet, sweet sleep – and take your bedding to the next level. Designs are printed onto the super-soft material for brilliant images and a dreamy, premium feel.

<< More Comforter Styles >>

3. USE COLOR TO COMBINE SHIPLAP WITH OTHER TEXTURES

dark green kitchen with white metro tile splash back and cream painted shiplap wall
(Image credit: Farrow & Ball)

For rooms fully immersed with shiplap, the trick is to create gradual layers of complementary tones that won’t feel too heavy against other elements in the room,’ advises Charlotte Cosby, Head of Creative at Farrow & Ball.

Using a deep green like Studio Green on the units will create a focal point and pick up the tones from the worktop, whilst intermixing the gentle Shaded White on the shiplap wall with James White on the ceiling adds subtle shading and picks up on the notes of green.’

Find somewhere soft to land. Our floor cushions are the super comfy and style-forward option for the boho side of us all. They’re UV coated to protect against fading and water resistant so you can avoid scrambling to bring them inside whenever there’s a touch of weather. Grab a few to have on hand whenever seating is hard to come by or for a fun option for kids to use out in the yard.

<< More Floor Pouf Styles >>

4. IT CAN BE HUNG HORIZONTALLY AS WELL AS VERTICALLY

dressing room with bright yellow dressing table, grey tiled floor, gold mirror, vintage sideboard and shiplap walls
(Image credit: Kim Armstrong Interior Design/Michael Hunter)

Imagine this make-up room designed by Texas-based Kim Armstrong Interior Design with plain walls – it would still look fabulous, but we feel it looks even more stylish with the shiplap walls because it adds depth and charm.  

The shiplap in this room was used in order to elevate the architecture of the room, ‘says Kim Armstrong, Co-Founder of Kim Armstrong Interiors.

I really wanted the antiques to shine together with the lighting, mirrors, and the black and white floor. I wanted the walls to be a crisp white, but I wanted something with more depth, and visually stronger than just painted sheetrock. And the architectural detail needed to be fairly casual and clean looking so I decided to run the wood planks horizontally, as most people refer to this as “shiplap” because I felt more traditional paneled walls would feel too formal. So in this bathroom, the shiplap walls add an extra depth of interest, but is simple enough to let the other elements in the room take the lead visually.’

Express your style all over your home with a feature-worthy rug. They’re made from a woven, polyester chenille for a soft and textured look. Plus, choosing from our wide array of designs, you’re sure to find just the rug to match your decor. Rugs are one of the best, attention-grabbing pieces to design a room around. Use the colors within the rug to help choose art prints, furniture fabric, and accent pillows.

<< More Oriental Bohemian Rug Styles >>

5. INSTALLED VERTICALLY, IT CAN MAKE A CEILING APPEAR TALLER

boot room with coat hooks tongue and groove panelling shiplap walls
(Image credit: Industville)

As with vertically striped wallpaper, shiplap laid vertically can make a room feel taller, which is always a bonus!

You can also mix and match it with tongue and groove successfully as you can see here where it’s painted duck egg blue. This section zones the boot and coat rack, whereas the shiplap then takes over and goes up to the ceiling with a limed finish which lightens the space really well. 

Park it in style on this incredibly versatile bench, upholstered with vegan leather featuring all the designs you love. The perfect indoor bench, it will give any space an instant upgrade. Dress it with plush blankets or throw pillows to keep it elegant, but super cush.

<< More Bench Styles >>

6. PAINT SHIPLAP IN A DARKER SHADE TO CREATE CONTRAST

blue shiplap wall home office with white woodwork, white desk and white painted floorboards
(Image credit: Little Greene)

The key to the successful use of shiplap on your walls is to treat it in the same way as you would when decorating normally. 

It looks stunning painted in a dark color, shown here is Little Greene’s Juniper Ash 115, and it contrasts dramatically against the desk and chair painted in Stock 37. The vertical nature draws your eye up to create the illusion of a larger space which is always worth doing as a design trick. 

Keeping the rest of the scheme in a soft white including the floor in Linen Wash 33 adds to the striking feel of this home office space.

It’s time to kick back. Our folding stools offer a lightweight, yet style-forward way to get your lounge on. There’s no better way to experience the outdoors than with your feet kicked back and a cold drink in hand, add in your unique sense of style and you truly can have it all. The woven polyester top is spill and splash resistant so you can take and use anywhere you feel like lounging.

<< More Folding Stool Styles >>

7. CREATE A SEASIDE FEEL IN YOUR BATHROOM WITH FRESH WHITE

white painted bathroom with white shiplap walls black fixtures and fittings and brass mirror

Shiplap walls work brilliantly in bathrooms. Painted in a crisp white, this House of Jade Interiors designed space shows it to its full potential. It really invokes a cozy yet classic feel that’s reminiscent of seaside chalets and cabins.

We love a white wall but with a subtle texture, which is why shiplap was the perfect choice for our modern farmhouse powder bath, ‘ says Kirsten Krason, Co-Owner and Principal Designer at House of Jade Interiors.  ‘The walls contrast beautifully with the wood vanity but the shiplap adds a lot of visual interest to this clean and simple space.’

Authentic and charming, you can team it with brass and black fixtures and fittings, and to prevent it from looking stark, pop in some colored towels with fringing.

Stop neglecting bathroom decor – our designer Shower Curtains bring a fresh new feel to an overlooked space. Hookless and extra long, these bathroom curtains feature crisp and colorful prints on the front, with a white reverse side.

<< More Shower Curtain Style >>

8. YOU CAN STAIN IT FOR A DIFFERENT VIBE

autumnal bedroom with stained wood shiplap wall, orange throws, faux fur rug

As shiplap is wood, you have the potential to paint and stain it as you wish, this is what makes it such a great choice as it’s so versatile.

We love this dark-stained shiplap wall idea that’s laid between the two windows, it perfectly zones the bed area and acts as an extension of the headboard. 

Shiplap also looks fabulous with other textures, and you can really create a wonderful room full of tactile elements that make a space super cozy by using shiplap as your blank canvas.

Our customers tell us ALL the time how soft and warm our Throw Blankets are (the secret: Sherpa fleece). Even better, they get softer the more you wash them. They’re a perfect addition to any living room couch. Featuring a crisp, vivid design on the front with a reverse white side.

<< More Throw Blanket Styles >>

9. MAKE A STATEMENT WITH A SHIPLAP COVERED HALLWAY

white hallway and stairs with white shiplap walls

Irene Gunter, Founder of London-based design studio, Gunter & Co, decided to use shiplap in her home in the central hallway to tie all the other rooms together, not only does it provide a strong visual connection between the spaces it was also chosen because of its hard-wearing nature.

I used solid cedar outdoor cladding and carefully painted the gaps between the panels black for a neat finish. It has stood the test of time really well and unlike normal painted walls you’ll be hard-pressed to detect any marks on the walls which is a lifesaver in a busy family home.’

First impressions are key—make your home’s first look count with a welcome mat that’s uniquely you. Our welcome mats are constructed from a looped vinyl which makes them easy to clean and durable enough to stand up to the elements. Whether you want to showcase your refined decor style or get funny with it—they’re a must-have for your home.

<< More Welcome Mat Styles >>

10. WANT TO GO ALL IN? GO FOR A WALL AND CEILING SHIPLAP LOOK

pink bedroom with pink painted shiplap walls and ceiling

For an all-encompassing shiplap wall idea, which if you get the color right can look absolutely stunning, cover your walls and ceiling in shiplap, then get painting!

We asked Charlotte Cosby, Head of Creative at Farrow & Ball for advice on how to paint shiplap in one color:

Color drenching is practically good in rooms with lots of awkward angles or for bedrooms that go up into the eaves of a house. Take your paint color, in this room it’s Dead Salmon, right up from the skirting boards and onto the ceiling covering every element in the space – this will create a much more cohesive look that is less distracting to the eye.’

Invite the sun inside on your terms. Our blackout window curtains are a denser alternative to your standard window curtain, blocking out most light and proudly featuring your favorite designs. Whether you live in a busy apartment or a peaceful neighborhood, it’s always nice to have the option to shut out the sun and relax inside by the candlelight. Available in either single or double panel options.

<< More Blackout Curtain Styles >>

WHAT EXACTLY IS SHIPLAP?

It’s a type of wooden board that’s more commonly used outside – a shed, barn, or cabin for example, but recently it’s starting to be seen inside too. It takes its name from shipbuilding, it was used to waterproof ships, that’s where the ‘ship’ aspect comes from. 

Generally, it’s laid horizontally, but you can use it vertically too. 

IS SHIPLAP THE SAME AS TONGUE AND GROOVE?

So what’s the difference between shiplap and good old tongue and groove we hear you cry? Well, not that much to be honest, but tongue and groove have a ‘groove’ as opposed to shiplap being flat planks.

Shiplap boards rest on top of each other and can overlap too, whereas tongue and groove panels interlock and join together. 

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