Tag Archives: bathrooms

Shiplap without the cost!



Faux shiplap walls



To create faux shiplap:

Mr. Mechanic and I started by purchasing two 4-x-8  plywood sheets from Lowe’s.  We needed to shiplap a 6×6 wall and one board would have left us two shiplap boards short. (Now I have extra boards for my next shiplap project.) The plywood we purchased is sized at 96 inches  by 48 inches and cost $13.48 for each sheet.  By cutting the plywood into 6 inch wide planks we knew that we could get 8 boards per plywood sheet!  The nice folks at Lowe’s cut these boards into 6 inch wide strips for us! The plywood we chose is pre-primed and looks pink!  Check out the plywood link to see exactly what we purchased.  If you’re a military family like us, don’t forget to get your 10% military discount at Lowe’s.




The planks have splintered edges on the cut sides, so we hand sanded them smooth.  When we tried to use an orbital, power-sander it caused it to splinter the edges more.  Hand sanding seemed to leave a smoother edge anyway.  I can’t stress enough how important this step was.  We got frustrated later, in the painting stage, when any splinters or rough edges showed up because of our lack of sanding. We did not have to sand the surfaces of the boards on this particular plywood. All of this sanding may sound labor intensive, but it went quickly; I got to spend some “quality” time with the mechanic.

We used a stud finder to find and mark our wall studs.  I drew a pencil line from top to bottom where the studs were. We wanted to make sure that all of our nails would go into a stud.


You can pre-paint all your boards but you would also need to pre-paint your wall too because the wall will show through a little bit. We decided to paint and install the planks at the same time.  We used Valspar Signature paint from Lowe’s.  We painted the only the  bottom edge of a plank, making sure to get off any excess paint drips immediately.


Making sure that our plank was level, we nailed it to the studs. (the pencil marks for our studs was our guide to help us see where our studs were.) We used nails near the top and bottom of each board to help prevent any warping at a later time. We used a nail gun but you can nail it by hand too.  At this point, I would finish painting the plank, making sure to fully paint the top edge of the plank too.  Small seams will make it where the wall shows through.  We made sure the seams that were showing were painted the same as the planks.  To help achieve this, while painting my top edge and face of my planks, I also painted the wall above the plank about an inch.

Mr. Mechanic and I used nickels to provide us even spacing between the planks.  This spacing is necessary to achieve the shiplap appearance.  Be careful not to let paint build up between the spaces. I even used some folded sheets of paper to wipe out any excess paint from the seams.






We continue up the wall, attaching and painting as we went. When we got to the light fixture, Mr. Mechanic removed it.

Using a jigsaw, he cut out the spot where the light fixture goes.  Mr. Mechanic used the face plate of the light fixture as a pattern.  He to drew on the round shape that needed to be cut out.  There might be better ways to do this, but it worked the first time for us!  I figured that if I HAD to cut the board in half to get it around the light fixture, that it would be OK.  I would just fill in the cut above the fixture with spackling compound.  But Mr. Mechanic  was able to make the circle without cutting above it.  “Jeeze-O-Man”, I said. (wiping the sweat from my brow.)

Perfect fit; I do my happy dance!



Once all the planks were installed, we decided to finish off our edges of shiplap by installing some trim. We used inside corner wall panel molding that we purchased at Lowe’s, but you can really use any kind of molding that you like.

You are left with lots of tiny holes where the nails went. We filled them with lightweight spackling. You only need to use your finger to fill the tiny spots.


Once all the holes are filled, apply another coat of paint on the whole surface.  I actually used two more coats of paint to achieve the finish that I was looking for.  I also painted the trim two coats.



Looks like real shiplap to me!


I love how the faux shiplap dressed up this bathroom.

Note: see how I refinished these vinyl (Thermafoil) cabinets in this blog under “Thermafoil cabinet makeovers”