Living Space Ideas with a Stunning Shiplap Accent Wall

A shiplap accent wall is a brilliant way to add texture and warmth to a room without committing the entire space to the look. Shiplap accent walls use shiplap wall paneling in only one section of the room. Shiplap is a type of wall paneling that is distinguished by overlapping planks that are joined together along the wall.

Shiplap kitchen white minimal

Some room designs include shiplap paneling on every wall surface throughout the space. A shiplap accent wall is a more tailored approach. You still achieve the visual interest of shiplap, but accent walls are more budget-friendly and create greater contrast to heighten the impact of the paneling.  

Shiplap Accent Wall Ideas

Shiplap accent wall designs are as variable and interesting as the decorators and homeowners that create them. Take inspiration from these unique shiplap accent wall designs to inspire your next DIY project.

Shiplap Kitchen Backsplash Accent Wall

Shiplap kitchen open shelving stainless range

Kitchens are a common place for shiplap accent walls. The designer used a white shiplap accent wall in this kitchen to add visual texture to the wall with shelves. Paint your kitchen shiplap with gloss or semi-gloss paint to protect it from food and moisture and to make it easy to wipe down when necessary.

Bathroom Shiplap Accent Wall

Bathroom Shiplap Accent Wall

Shiplap accent walls are also popular in bathrooms. The limited space in bathrooms does not allow for extensive molding. A shiplap accent wall adds interest to the room without overpowering it. Shiplap molding is also useful in bathrooms because it protects the wall from water splashes and excess moisture.

Bedroom Shiplap Accent Wall

Bedroom Shiplap Accent Wall

Shiplap accent walls in the bedroom help to draw attention to and frame the bed more effectively than other walls. The shiplap in this room was painted white to match the rest of the walls. You can increase the contrast even further by painting the shiplap accent walls a different color than the rest of the walls.

Shiplap Accent Wall in the Laundry

Shiplap Accent Wall in the Laundry

Laundry rooms, like bathrooms and kitchens, are vulnerable to moisture exposure. Use shiplap accent walls to protect areas of the laundry room where water is present. The designer for this laundry room used shiplap as a backdrop for utility shelves. They painted the shiplap the same color as the shelves and cabinets, but in a lighter shade.

Backdoor Entry Shiplap Accent Wall

Backdoor Entry Shiplap Accent Wall
Image by diybeautify

DIY Beautify uses a little corner in their kitchen to add an accent shiplap wall, which you could recreate in any space in your home. This simple weekend project uses leftovers from other DIY work and creates a cozy space in any part of your home. This idea could be used in a laundry room, mudroom, or any other smaller space in your home. The peg hooks and mirror look fantastic in this space on top of the wall, so you don’t need to leave it empty once your work is complete.

 Shiplap Accents in Open Shelving

 Shiplap Accents in Open Shelving
Image by Metrie

Metrie provides us with some fantastic inspiration for adding a subtle hint of shiplap to your home. Try hiding the shiplap behind shelving in your lounge or bedroom if you are unsure about adding a full feature wall. This adds texture to the room as well as visual interest to the open bookcases. It draws attention to whatever is on display, making it the focal point of the room.

Dark Shiplap Accent Wall

Dark Shiplap Accent Wall 

We recommend a darker shade for a more modern look, such as this blue shiplap wall from Decor Pad. The addition of this feature wall, which blends in with the built-in shelving, completely transforms this modern den. The walls set the tone for the entire space, and the armless sofa rounds out the look. This color would also work well in a teenager’s bedroom.

Shiplap Fireplace Wall

Shiplap Fireplace Wall
image by caitlincreerinteriors

Add a focal area to your family room, as demonstrated by Caitlin Creer. The fireplace is an ideal location for shiplap, and it adds a cozy and warming feel to this area of the room. Adding an accent wall is the ideal way to test out shiplap walls before committing to covering the whole wall on either side of your fireplace. The best thing about trying a small area is that it won’t cost too much to install and will be a short weekend project. It is a fun way to test out the laying technique and see how challenging it would be to find a larger space to complete.

Types of Shiplap Accent Wall Paneling

 Shiplap paneling comes in a variety of styles that can be used for accent walls in interior design. The type of shiplap paneling you choose will influence the final appearance of your shiplap accent wall as well as how the paneling is assembled during installation.  

  • Square edge shiplap: Square edge shiplap boards are designed to interlock with each other and have dovetail edges in place so that there are no gaps visible in the shiplap.
  • Nickel gap shiplap: Nickel gap shiplap is similar to square edge shiplap in that it is formed by edged boards designed to dovetail together. However, nickel gap shiplap incorporates a gap between each piece of shiplap to give it a more defined look.
  • Tongue and edge groove: Tongue and edge grooved shiplap boards have a built-in groove on one edge and a tongue on the other. This allows the shiplap boards to be stacked smoothly on top of one another, with no gaps between them.
  • Eased gap groove: Eased gap groove shiplap creates a blunted v-shaped groove between each board, giving the wall a textured look.

Materials to Use for Shiplap Accent Walls

Shiplap boards are made from a variety of materials. Solid wood boards are the most expensive option, but they also have the most textural variation. 

  • Cedar: Cedar is a popular choice for shiplap boards because it has a pleasant fragrance and a striking reddish color in its natural state. Cedar is one of the most expensive shiplap materials, but it is ideal for a rustic accent wall.
  • Pine: Pine is a cost-effective shiplap material. Because the natural flaws in the wood lend the room a rustic look, pine shiplap boards are a good match for rural or farmhouse designs.
  • Plywood: Plywood is the most cost-effective type of wood used in shiplap; however, when cut, the raw, layered edge is visible. Some people leave this exposed to achieve a rustic look, but plywood paints well if you want a more finished presentation. 
  • MDF: Medium-density fiberboards are a low-cost alternative to shiplap planks. MDF must be painted to be finished because it cannot be stained or left unfinished. When MDF planks are painted, it is difficult to tell them apart from solid wood. 
  • Reclaimed or Salvaged Planks: For rustic shiplap accent walls, planks gathered from old barns, sheds, and industrial spaces are popular. Salvaged boards are prized for their varied color and texture. 
  • Cement Boards: Cement boards are popular for creating accent areas near fireplaces because they are fire-resistant. Cement shiplap boards are available for exterior use from exterior siding manufacturers such as Hardie boards. 

Best Places to Add Shiplap Accent Walls in Your Home

Shiplap is an excellent choice for creating focal points in communal areas and adding visual interest to underutilized alcoves. Shiplap can help to accent design choices if you are trying to decorate your home along a specific theme, such as coastal decor or farmhouse aesthetics.

  • Bathrooms: A white shiplap accent wall can help add texture and visual interest to a monochromatic bathroom while keeping it from appearing cluttered or small. Shiplap accent walls also help to keep moisture off the wall. 
  • Kitchen backsplash: Shiplap is useful in the kitchen to protect the walls from food and moisture. Shiplap accent walls can be used in backsplash areas or to draw attention to vent hoods and cabinetry
  • Bedroom: Bedrooms are ideal for shiplap accent walls. Shiplap can be used to add textural framing to the wall behind the bed. This creates a natural focal point.  
  • Living room: Shiplap on every wall can be overwhelming in a large space like a great room or living room. Instead, use shiplap on an accent wall near your entertainment console and other focal points to help ground the space and provide a place to center your seating arrangements.

How to Decorate Your Shiplap Accent Walls

Shiplap is a relatively neutral design element that can be combined with a wide range of decorating styles. It provides a great deal of decorating flexibility.  

  • Install string lighting. Shiplap’s small grooves and edges can create interesting patterns and textures on the wall, which can be emphasized with good lighting. String lights complement light-colored shiplap and soften the appearance of black shiplap.
  • Mount some live plants. Shiplap makes an excellent bare canvas against which to hang fresh green foliage. The contrast of inorganic straight lines and greenery can give your space a refreshing feel.
  • Place a large statement piece. A large statement piece, whether it is a framed mirror, a one-of-a-kind clock, or some other type of wall art, can help act as a focal point for longer shiplap walls, breaking up the repetition of the shiplap’s pattern.
  • Put together a photo gallery. A shiplap wall’s bare, neutral appearance makes an excellent backdrop for a photo collage or collection. Choose photos with a similar theme for a more cohesive look, or mismatched picture frames and photos for a more eclectic look.