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The Simple Beauty of Shiplap: Inspiration, Tips & DIY Tutorials

Shiplap Wall via Travis Heights Burnish and Plumb

Shiplap is definitely still enjoying its time in the sun, but the easygoing beauty of this traditional wooden board will never go out of style. So what is shiplap, anyway? You’ve probably heard this term all over HGTV, and you’ve almost certainly seen it, even if you couldn’t quite identify it by name at the time.

Shiplap Wall via Forest Products Supply
Shiplap Wall via Forest Products Supply

Occasionally, plain wooden planks nailed to a wall get misidentified as shiplap, but that’s not quite what it is. Real shiplap boards have a rabbet cut into their edges to provide just the perfect spacing when they’re installed, giving them a consistent appearance and a desirable watertight effect. Eastern White Pine just happens to be an ideal material for shiplap, creating smooth horizontal lines and an even surface that’s a heck of a lot nicer looking than plain old drywall.

Shiplap Wall via Stonewood Products
Shiplap Wall via Stonewood Products

It may be most popular for use on walls, but shiplap can be used on ceilings, too, and it looks beautiful in every room of the home, including bathrooms. Pine shiplap boards are easy for beginners and DIYers to install, too. You can buy Eastern White Pine shiplap straight from NELMA suppliers like Stonewood Products and Hancock Lumber, or ask your builder to source it in your area.

Shiplap Wall via Studio McGee
Shiplap Wall via Studio McGee

Looking for tips and tutorials? Check out Home Depot’s guide to installing a shiplap wall, and get some ideas for decorating with shiplap from Fixer Upper on HGTV. Lowe’s has some tips for creating a shiplap accent wall, too. Check out the shiplap gallery below, full of posts tagged #shiplap on Instagram. Got a project you want to feature? Let us know on Facebook!

Top image: Travis Heights Burnish & Plumb Austin


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