How To DIY A Shiplap Accent Wall In One Day
There is something welcoming and cozy when we walk into a room with Shiplap walls. Why does horizontal wood on a wall feel okay and vertical wood on the wall (remember the popularity of paneling in the 70’s?) seem so dated? Perhaps, because Chip and Joanna from HGTV’s Fixer Upper show has made it trendy? This probably has a lot to do with it and that’s okay with us.
Because of their popular TV show, shiplap is back and it doesn’t appear to be losing it’s popularity any time soon. The nice thing about shiplap is that it doesn’t have to be associated with one particular design style. We typically think of the modern farmhouse style with white shiplap walls, but shiplap walls can accent a coastal style cottage by the beach side or turn a lovely floral bedroom into Shabby Chic and rustic. The shiplap doesn’t always have to be white either. You will see people painting them gray or using a walnut stain to give a rustic cabin feel. You can also buy shiplap in all kinds of colors without painting. You will see another DIY shiplap accent wall in our office makeover using multi colors of shiplap soon. Stay tuned.
Whatever your preference, you can certainly add some distinct style and charm to your office, bedroom or as we did in our entry way.
Here’s how we did our DIY Shiplap Accent Wall In One Day.
White Barnwood Shiplap slabs- We used original “shiplap” wood that came in a variety of colors from Lowe’s home improvement store. Each piece measured 8 ft. long x 5″. We purchased 18 @ $8.44 a piece.
Plywood (we purchased 3- 4×8 ft. Sanded plywood at $19.23 each)
Trim – We used 1″ x 4″ white trim
Nail gun or hammer
Skill Level: Medium
Budget: Approximately $300 for materials
Time Commitment: 1 day
Before you start your shiplap accent wall, you will need to measure your accent wall to see how many slabs of shiplap you need to purchase. Decide how you want to cut your individual shiplap pieces of wood unless your wall is the exact size of the shiplap. Be sure to include the trim on both ends and the top and bottom of the wall when measuring.
In our case, the accent wall was 9 feet wide and the shiplap was 8 feet long. We decided to cut the shiplap pieces into 5 ft. and 2 ft. and 4 inches. This allowed for the 2 -4″ trim pieces on each side. Th wall measured 7 ft 7 inches tall. We calculated about 3 shiplap slabs per every 2 rows.
This is our before picture of the accent wall.
STEP 1: Dean removed the trim from the top and bottom of the accent wall with a pry bar. Remove any light plates or electrical outlet plates, if applicable.
Step 2: Dean decided to nail plywood to the accent wall instead of nailing the shiplap directly into the 2″ x 4″ beams in the wall. The main reason he chose to do this is because when we put new counter tops in our kitchen a couple years ago he quickly found out that the builders had used steel to build the kitchen bar area. Dean did not want to take a chance that there may be steel in this accent wall. Plus, if Shiplap ever goes out of style, we can easily remove it without damaging the original wall.
You can see that he used one sheet of plywood for the top half then cut the other pieces to size for the bottom half as well as measured around the electrical socket.
Step 3: Nail the trim pieces in place. Dean replaced the prior trim that we had at the top and bottom of the wall with new trim. Starting at the bottom piece of trim, using your nail gun or hammer and nails, nail your first larger piece of shiplap into the wall or plywood. Then, nail the smaller piece next to it. We staggered the shorter and longer pieces of shiplap as we went up the wall. So, above the longer shiplap there was a shorter piece and above the shorter piece of shiplap was a longer piece. You keep repeating this process all the way to the top.
We used small 1/4″ pieces of plywood for spacing in between the pieces of wood otherwise known as a nickel gap. It gives it a shadow line or a reveal. You do not have to do this with shiplap if you do not want to. It was just a preference for us.
Step 4: To finish off the top, you may have to cut the last shiplap to size.
Dean also added a 4 inch trim to the side to finish it off.
Step 5: To give it a fresh clean look since the original shiplap had a gray tint to it, I painted the entire wall with Alabaster White. After arranging our family photos and adding a distressed floating shelf, we are completely satisfied with our DIY shiplap accent wall and enjoy all the compliments we receive.