DIY Shiplap Walls

Friday, January 18, 2019

I guess you could say I am a fan of shiplap. We have now done three walls in our home with faux shiplap, and I am asked often how we do it. So, I thought it was time that I share the deets with you. The process is actually pretty simple.

Step 1: Measure your wall and figure out how much "ship lap" you are going to need. The last thing you want is to start the project and run out of supplies, so measuring should always be the first step. 

Step 2: Go to your local home improvement store and purchase some 1/4" smooth plywood in 4' x 8' sheets. Bonus points if they will cut it for you! We got ours at Home Depot, and they will cut it for a small fee. You want them to cut to 8' x 7 3/4"...this will account for the blade width, and you won't have a off size piece left over. 

Step 3: Start in a corner of the wall that you are wanting covered, and use a nail gun to hang the plywood. We started with a full piece and then continued until we had to cut a strip to size. Once we moved to the second row, we made cuts to ensure that ends didn't line up with one on top of the other. We used a nickle at the end of each board to ensure that we had the spacing even. (It helps if you have an extra pair of hands for this part!)

Step 4: Paint! We have painted all of our shiplap walls white, but I also think that a really dark gray wall would be pretty! 


1. Paint the wall before you hang the shiplap. We didn't do this the first time, and it isn't as easy as we thought it would be to get paint in those cracks. I was sure that the wall wouldn't be visible enough for it to even matter, but it was. 

2. Get the Lauan that is primed if you have the choice. This was another thing that we learned from our first go. It soaks up paint like crazy and the first time we did this we ended up needing several extra coats.

3. Don't worry if it isn't perfect! The way the boards are cut doesn't always leave perfectly straight edges.While it may not be completely flawless, I still think it looks great! 

I love the texture that the shiplap adds. It breaks up this big wall in our addition so beautifully. It doesn't even really need any art...but it may also be the perfect wall for some family photos!

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