Colby and I have talked about doing some sort of DIY accent wall in our bedroom for over a year. We’ve already done two other shiplap walls in our house, but wasn’t sure what to do in here.
This site contains affiliate links. I may receive a commission for purchases made through these links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. [Learn more]
DIY Shiplap Wall
We knew we wanted something to change it up and add some “pizazz” to the room. To truly make it our own and put our own spin on it.
The wooden shiplap barn door we made years ago has been our only DIY bedroom project until this point. And it’s absolutely one of my favorite home projects yet.
If we’re being honest though, there have been a few (sort of legit) reasons we’ve stalled in our plans:
- This headboard. I still love it. It’s from the Magnolia collection and we’ve had it since before we moved here 5 years ago. It was a sacrificial gift to ourselves when we bough it because it was a bit pricey.
I just couldn’t let it go. I like to get my money’s worth, and, well, it holds some sentimental value. But, I also didn’t like any of the decorating ideas I had for working around it.
- We’ve had our oldest granddaughter for most of the last year while Avery was in treatment. I mean, we’re not “old,” but we’re also not young, and she requires a lot of our energy—and time.
Now that Avery is out of the hospital and their family is back at home, Colby and I needed a project. We miss having her sister here every day and this keeps my mind busy so I don’t miss her so much.
- Lastly, cost. The past 2 years haven’t been the easiest to work through. Our industry took a huge hit with the pandemic, and then needing to be available to help with Avery became a top priority.
Fortunately, we found a more affordable option to do what we wanted here and worked to make that happen.
And it turned out beautifully, if we must say so ourselves.
And the black shiplap?
It was an absolutely last-minute audible because I couldn’t find a dark gray I liked. Everything I could find had a color undertone that I just hated.
Well, not to mention the small detail that the faux shiplap wall was originally supposed to be board and batten. I completely changed everything last minute.
Especially when I also had us doing a “side project” at the same time we worked on this one.
Sitting around (literally) waiting for paint dry doesn’t set well with me. I had to do something in the waiting. So, I’ll share the other project later.
But, they both turned out great! Now to decorate that shelf above the bed.
The things pictured there for now are items I took from other parts of the house. Because it was a last minute change, the black items I bought for the gray wall no longer work. Guess I “have to” grab some new things!
How to plank a wall for under $100
Doing our research on what to use instead of shiplap, we discovered MDF. Well, not for the first time, but for this shiplap project.
On the other two shiplap wall DIY projects in our house, we used tongue and groove shiplap.
It was already painted white, heavier, and made to fit together. Not to mention, it was already cut into 6″ planks.
In our master bedroom, I wanted to go with a wide shiplap wall, so we went with 8″ planks.
What can I use instead of shiplap?
With the rising cost of wood, MDF became a viable option.
Unfortunately, our The Home Depot would only cut the MDF sheets into 12″ or 16″ pieces, so we had them cut the 16″ planks and then we had to rip those in half ourselves.
It doubled our cut time, but wasn’t a huge deal.
DIY shiplap wall materials:
The accent wall we were adding shiplap to is 17′ long and 12′ tall. That’s a lot of money when we’re talking about using actual shiplap wood planks.
So, MDF it was. We used 4 (four) 4’x8′ sheets at $14 each.
We also bought 9 (nine) 8′ 1’x2′ boards for the trim around the accent wall, as well as the window trim.
The shelf used an 8′ 1’x3′ and a 1’x2′ piece of wood to make the shelf.
Finally, we went with BEHR ULTRA® SCUFF DEFENSE™ Stain-Blocking Paint & Primer paint because it’s our favorite brand from our RV trailer renovation.
How to install shiplap accent wall
The hardest part is cutting each of the planks to fit around the windows and outlets.
The easiest portion of wall to plank was the straight, wide main area.
We trimmed out the windows and side of the walls of the first. We wanted to butt the shiplap planks up against the trim, rather than covering it with the trim, so it was measured, cut, and hung first.
Then, each plank had to be individually measured and cut before hanging. (We learned with our very first home project that, even though our house was a new construction, it was anything but square).
We would measure, cut, fit, and then use Liquid Nail to adhere the shiplap planks before nailing.
Oh, we also used tile spacers to ensure the gaps stayed consistent. (We used quarters with our other shiplap wall projects).
Shiplap bedroom wall DIY
To cut around the windows, we used a Contour Gauge. It was especially helpful around the bottom of the windows where we left the original window sill in tact.
As well as the top of the windows that we boxed trim in a farmhouse style.
Again, because our house isn’t square, the cutting and fitting was the longest, most involved part of the project.
Black shiplap wall
Finally, it was time to paint.
This is where Colby and I had differing opinions on how things should go. Probably because he doesn’t do the painting. I do.
I would have preferred painting everything first. The black under the planks, as well as the planks themselves.
As well as all of the trim. I’ll post about all of this later.
For now, know we rolled the black paint (we used BEHR Ultra Carbon). I wanted black, but not a bold, dark black; if that even makes sense.
The MDF didn’t seem to soak up a ton of paint and it rolled on nicely. (For reference, we glued the white side of the MDF to the wall and painted the brown backside.)
What sheen of paint do you use on shiplap?
When choosing a sheen of paint for our bedroom wall, we decided on Eggshell. Colby wanted something between matte and shiny.
Eggshell leaves a “soft, velvety appearance” which we felt was ideal for our bedroom asethetic.
Plus, because we weren’t going to use a headboard, we chose the BEHR ULTRA SCUFF DEFENSE™ Stain-Blocking Paint & Primer. It provides “advanced scuff & mar resistance” so we thought it would be perfect for protecting the wall.
The finished result was stunning. At least in our eyes.
Our youngest daughter was absolutely not feeling the black at all as we worked. “It’s just not my style,” she said.
But, by the final reveal, all of the kids loved it! And it makes such a huge difference in our bedroom.
Even looking in from the living room, it grabs your attention and simply demands to be seen.
Now, about our master bathroom…
- Measure length and height of wall.
- Determine number of MDF sheets needed.
- Cut sheets into equal planks based on your desired width.
- Use Liquid Nails to position on wall with tile spacer wedges between planks for gap.
- Fit each plank into its place on the wall.
- Nail into position.
- Continue wall until finished covering.
- Paint planks.