Have you ever seen one of those cozy cottages in movies and wished you could live in one? Well, you would have to build your own cottage, but there is a cheaper and quicker way to create a similar effect in your home by using shiplap cladding. In recent years, there has been increased interest in shiplap-focused interior décor. Shiplap has appeared on HGTV shows, filled up interior décor blogs, and appeared in numerous magazine pages. In our latest home improvement guide, we take a look at Shiplap cladding, what it is and how you can use it in your home. It is one of those home improvement projects that should take you a single weekend and not too much money to complete.
What is Shiplap?
Shiplap is a type of wooden board traditionally used on the exterior of buildings. It is an effective and inexpensive way to clad a building and protect it against weather elements, especially water. Homeowners have recognized the beauty of shiplap and over time, it has found a place in the warm interiors of many homes.
When used inside, shiplap creates a cottage-like, farmhouse or shabby chic effect. It is especially good at turning a dull and cold space into a warm, cozy and welcoming interior. You can use it to accent a specific part of a room such as the wall around the hearth, the space above the tub or the area above your bed. Alternatively, it can be used more extensively to panel entire rooms such as the bathroom, living area, or bedroom. There are numerous creative ways you can use shiplap in your home. We will go through them shortly.
If by the end of this guide you area leaning toward some shiplap for your own home, you have two installation options; you could DIY it or call in a professional. As a DIY project, it’s difficulty is moderate and you will need an extra hand or two to help. But if you are not sure, we always recommend letting a professional handle it.
Types of Shiplap
Traditionally, cheap wood such as pine was used in making shiplap boards. Today, homeowners have a range of material options to choose from. The most common is real wood, where your planks of wood are installed stack-style along the height of a wall. Real wood is especially ideal if you are planning to leave it exposed but it can also be a bit pricey.
Other less expensive options include plywood, MDF or hardboards. With these, you might have to apply a nice finish on top, such as painting, to create the full cottage effect. You can find these materials at most home stores including Home Depot.
Shiplap can also be categorized depending on their design. Some types of shiplap consist simply of planks of wood, MDF or plywood. Other types come with a design that allows them to fit snugly into each other. They are referred to as tongue and groove shiplap.
If you are doing a DIY installation, it is important that you understand the different types of shiplap and how installation varies among them.
Pros and Cons of Shiplap
One of the best things about shiplap is that it brings dramatic change without requiring a big investment in money and time. You can spend a single weekend putting up shiplap siding on a wall and less than $500 but the effect will be priceless. It changes the room drastically; producing a look that, using other methods, would have cost thousands of dollars.
Another advantage is the simple installation. Whether you are using plain planks, MDF, or tongue and groove shiplap, the installation process is fairly simple and straightforward. If you have someone to help you that has the right tools, you can do a quick and easy installation. There is no ripping out walls or messing around with utilities. Additionally, as many homeowners would agree, it is a pretty fun home improvement project to fill up your weekend.
Even if you opt to call a professional, the installation cost will not be too much. The décor benefits of shiplap are very worthwhile and with just several planks, a plain room transforms into a magazine-worthy space full of character. A cold bedroom suddenly overflows with warmth. A dull bathroom instantly feels like it has been built on a beach. A boring home office turns into a dreamy workspace that spurs your creativity.
Another advantage is its flexibility. It can be used in a wide range of applications both inside and outside the home. Just to mention a few that we have already shown above, it can be used for the ceiling, wainscoting, full wall paneling, creating a wall accents and so on.
Overall, shiplap is an efficient, highly effective, and inexpensive way to renovate your home.
You can take a look at our other projects for design ideas.
Disadvantages of Shiplap
There are a few downsides and concerns we must make note of. One, shiplap in certain areas like the bathroom and kitchen are at a bigger risk of damage because of the moisture. Without proper finishing, the wood will start to warp or even rot.
Another problem arises when you need to repair damage to the shiplap or the wall underneath. Usually, it becomes necessary to remove a large chunk of the shiplap even for simple damage repair.
The world of interior design never stays still; new ideas and innovations keep coming. Shiplap is one of the best interior décor ideas you can use in your home. If not for any other reason, just the fact that it creates the exact style you want without draining your bank account.
To get the best out of shiplap our best advice is to be creative. There are many more ideas and ways to use shiplap at home than those we have highlighted above. Using this inspiration, find a design and style that is perfect for your home and go for it.