Perfect Panels: 15 Styles of Wood Walls

published Jun 12, 2013
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Do the words “wood paneling” still make you recoil in fear, leaving bad memories of childhood decor and a bitter taste in your mouth? Where once wood paneling was merely a cheap way to quickly cover walls, we now see it as a creative antidote to blank, blah spaces. That’s thanks largely to clever people who’ve figured out ways to make it interesting and fresh. Here are a few ideas and techniques to consider:

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1. Staggered: An otherwise simple bathroom from Real Living made special by the unique layout of white painted panels.

2. Hung Horizontally: Jagoda Architecture got around tradition by hanging wood lengthwise across the wall.

3. Overlapped: What could have been a creepy basement is now a warm and cozy sitting area from World of Bea.

4. Unfinished: No need to do anything if you like the rustic, cabin feel of this room from Lonny.

5. Patterned: Here paneling gets the herringbone treatment (and a fantastic blue stain) from VT Wonen.

6. Painted White: Banish the dungeon feel of old paneling with a bright, clean paint. From Skona Hem

7. Painted Dark: Did I say paint it white? House Beautiful shows you can also paint paneling a dark shade for some quick drama.

8. Camouflaged: If those don’t work, distract the eye by painting paneling a similar shade as the rest of the decor, like this living room from Perscentrum Wonen, via Eenig Wonen.

9. Reclaimed: This amazing parquet moving wall is made from an old floor from a primary school. You can see more over at Retrovius.

10. Modernized: Although Aerin Lauder’s Aspen retreat nods to the past, the flat panels make it both completely modern and relaxed.

11. Resized: Ultra-narrow panels are an unexpected twist on wood walls, as seen in this Brentwood residence designed by William Hefner.

12. Continuous: This photo from Simon Watson shows a Swiss bedroom that uses panels on every plane, in a continuous stream of wood.

13. Artful: This falls more into the inspiration category, but check out the walls of Ariel Alasko’s studio.

14. Multi-tonal: Sarah’s salvaged wall, featured on Design Sponge, was done for $130.

15. Undecorated: Plywood makes a room, like this one from Real Living, feel handcrafted (in a good way).