We had looked at our bare wall for several years, and had always discussed putting ledgestone rock on it as a focal wall, but the expense would have been a lot, and very time consuming. Like half of the country does, I was watching an episode of Chip and JoAnna’s Fixer Upper. As always, they were creating another beautiful, & jaw dropping interior and exterior renovation. Thats when it hit me……..we could do shiplap on our wall!!! BOOM, and the idea was created. So, thank you Gaines Family! It was a fraction of the cost plus time, of ledgestone rock, and wouldn’t take but a weekend to get it done. As it turns out, we had every single tool that we needed, already, at home. The only thing we needed was the shiplap!
DIY Home Shiplap Focal Wall
1 Nickel!! (I’ll explain later)
Begin Your Project:
First things first, figure out how much material you’ll need on your wall, adding in 10% overage. We purchased this mdf/shiplap from Lowes. It’s actually reversible. On one side, it is beadboard, and the other side is shiplap. Pretty cool huh?
Level it up with a laser level(we used a similar one here), to mark where your studs are. Start from the top left and work to the bottom right. As we applied each row, going down, we used a hand level, just to make sure it was level and also used a nickel in between the seam of each board that went below. We did this just to make sure our seam was the same width apart as all of the others. Since a lot of walls arent truly level, using a hand level is important, otherwise it will be apparent once you’re finished, and you dont want to have to undo all of your hard work!
Only cut the right side of the board(due to the “lip or overlap” thats on the boards)
Measure out and plan for where you want your seams. You can do the seams however you want- brick style or straight down in a row. It was tricky for us, because we had wall speakers that we needed to cut around, as well as a door, so our seams are a little bit off, but barely noticeable once we painted it. We also cheated a little bit and did not go all the way across the wall, where our tv would cover up.
Nail in each piece to the wall studs,using your nail gun & compressor(we used approximately 6 nails per board). Some people use glue on the back of the boards, but we felt that since each piece was secured into a wall stud, that was sufficient enough.
Once you get to the bottom where your baseboard is. Remove the baseboard and apply your last row, then put the baseboard on top of it.
Applying painter’s caulk on the ends of the wall, so it covers any spaces between the adjoining wall and give it a finished look. We just ran our finger down the caulk to smooth it out. Also applying around a door(if there is one). If you happen to get too much on the wall, simply wipe off with a damp cloth.
We wiped down the newly shiplapped wall with a damp cloth, to remove any dust particles.
***Since the boards already come primed, we applied our paint directly on top. Depending on the quality of paint, you may need a couple of coats. I used Benjamin Moore Kendall Charcoal and only needed one coat.
Of course dont forget to tape your edges off with painters tape, and cover your carpet/floor so you dont drip any paint on it. I used this paint brush for trimming it in, which is a good quality one that I have used many times. You’ll want to make sure you also get in between the seams of the boards(otherwise it will look white, and appear unfinished). I then, used a 4″ foam roller to roll the boards. This will prevent your boards from showing brush strokes, and have a nice, smooth finish.
Our adjoining walls are a light grey(Benjamin Moore ozark shadows), and we were originally going to leave the shiplap white, but decided to paint it, since it turned out to look unfinished. Since this was a TV focal wall in our basement, we could get away with a darker/rich color. I’m in love with how it turned out. It really draws the eye directly to the wall, and the shiplap adds the perfect amount of texture to the room!
Watch our DIY Shiplap Video Below: