Shiplap bedroom wall ideas – 10 stylish ways with wall paneling

Give your sleep space a beautiful backdrop with these shiplap bedroom wall ideas

Shiplap bedroom wall ideas
(Image credit: Cotswold Company / Allison Babcock)

Shiplap bedroom wall ideas are a wonderful way to bring subtle texture into a space.

A hallmark of coastal and farmhouse interiors, shiplap walls are a great backdrop for achieving a variety of interior looks, from cool beach house to cozy country cabin. However, as well as being amongst the best wall decor for bedrooms, shiplap wall ideas can also serve as a clever visual devices. 

'Shiplap looks beautiful and adds texture and interest into a room that a flat wall cannot. It is a fabulous design trick to create the illusion of more space. I use shiplap horizontally on slanted walls and ceilings to make the room seem longer but it is also fabulous vertically to make a room seem taller,' explains the New York based interior designer Phillip Thomas.

Whether you already have shiplap bedroom walls and are looking for new ways to decorate, or you are considering fitting shiplap as a bedroom accent wall idea, these stylish spaces and expert wall paneling tips will help you get inspired. 

Hugely versatile, shiplap bedroom wall ideas make a great canvas for all sorts of decorating ideas, alongside your bedroom color ideas and how you style the space. 

Dark shiplap walls are perfect for rustic bedroom ideas while white wall paneling makes for wonderful coastal decor or Scandinavian decor; alternatively if you're looking for farmhouse bedroom wall decor ideas you can't go wrong with shiplap paneling in a classic duck egg or soft sage green. 

For those that have a shiplap bedroom wall as part of their architecture it's well worth preserving as it can be a beautiful feature, but for those that don't and love the look, then shiplap bedroom wall ideas can be bought as sheets and fitted using adhesive. Alternatively, for a quick and easy way to get the look, why not try a shiplap-style bedroom wallpaper?

1. White shiplap bedroom walls create a coastal look

White coastal bedroom with shiplap paneling

(Image credit: Project by Allison Babcock / photograph Matt Kisiday)

White bedroom ideas are a wonderful match for shiplap bedroom wall ideas. For interior designer Allison Babcock, white-painted shiplap bedroom paneling is the go-to backdrop for her fresh, coastal schemes. 

'Shiplap lends a beautiful, coastal feel to a room. The clean, handcrafted lines overlap at the joints which is similar to the method used to make ships. It is unfussy but always looks finished.' 

Simply layer with white bedroom furniture and accessories in an array of sea blues to achieve the beach house look.

2. Create calm with soft grey paneling

grey country bedroom with shiplap paneling

(Image credit: Cotswold Company)

Decorating with white in a bedroom can make the space feel stark and dazzling, especially when shiplap paneling is painted in a brilliant white. In this farmhouse bedroom the shiplap wall paneling is painted in a soft, warm grey. Grey bedroom ideas create a backdrop with subtle color and gentle texture, perfect for a relaxing space conducive to sleep.

Bedlinen and cushions in striped and ticking fabrics make a lovely complement to the vertical lines of the shiplap while layers of soft buttermilk yellow and warm neutrals work beautifully with the grey walls.

3. Create colorful feature wall

Coastal bedroom with a breezy palette of blues

For a playful twist on the traditional nautical look trade in white painted shiplap bedroom walls for a vibrant teal and team blue bedroom ideas with an unexpected pop of pink. 

Reaching only three quarters of the way up the wall and topped with a small shelf, the shiplap bedroom wall idea makes a lovely space for decorating with art or displaying small decorative objects. An oversized wall light and a bold geometric bedcover keep the space feeling contemporary.

4. Make a narrow room feel wider with horizontal shiplap bedroom walls

white bedroom with shiplap wall and ensuite bathroom

(Image credit: Industville/House Nine Designs)

If you're looking for a way to make a small bedroom look bigger then shiplap bedroom walls can be a perfect solution. Fitted horizontally, the paneling can help narrow rooms appear wider, while fitted vertically it will help lead the eye upwards making the room appear taller. 

Keeping the shiplap white will help maximize the feeling of space – to prevent it feeling cold why not add in warm metallic touches and a plush upholstered headboard? These will also help the space feel more luxurious and cozy.

5. Use shiplap for closet doors

Dressing room ideas niche nook in bedroom

(Image credit: Anna Stathaki)

For small bedrooms, disguising fitted bedroom storage or closets as shiplap is a wonderful design trick which can help the space appear larger. 

With discreet handles and joins, these tongue and groove doors have a seamless appearance when closed but easily slide open to reveal all sorts of handy bedroom storage. 

6. Use shiplap bedroom walls to bring texture to dark spaces

Navy blue shiplap paneling in a bedroom with a wooden dressing table and seat

(Image credit: Cotswold Company)

As dark colors absorb light and visually make walls advance, dark bedrooms can feel wonderfully cozy and intimate. However, when painted wall to wall in a flat color the space can lack atmosphere. Fitting shiplap bedroom wall ideas is a fabulous way to lift the space as when illuminated the board will bring subtle texture.

In this space the dark navy shiplap makes a beautiful backdrop for a dressing table in warm wood.

7. Create a coastal kid's room

bedroom with bunk beds and shiplap bedroom wall paneling

(Image credit: David Frazier)

For interior designer David Frazier, fitting shiplap to the bedroom wall was a great way to enhance the nautical feel of this kids' room. Being a narrow space, the horizontal lines it creates help make the room feel larger, too. 

Industrial-style bedroom wall lighting has been fitted inside each loft bed so as to add to the coastal feel.

8. Use shiplap in a vintage bedroom

Weatherboarded white bedroom

(Image credit: Brent Darby)

For antiques' dealer and vintage lover Holly Clements, shiplap bedroom walls provided a brilliant backdrop for decorating with antiques in her renovated Georgian cottage

In her son's room she has topped the shiplap with peg rail to create a handy small bedroom storage idea while the striped bedlinen, vintage travel poster and industrial pendant give a subtle nod to coastal style. 

9. Use color to make a feature of your shiplap

Colorful shiplap bedroom walls

(Image credit: Morris & Co)

While painted paneling is a popular choice, if you're confident with color, why not draw attention to your paneling with a fun mix of bedroom paint ideas?

Here walls painted in a selection of new Morris & Co paints bring a contemporary twist to the historic space, the colors and smooth paint finish also make a lovely contrast with the historic beams, helping draw attention to their rustic texture. 

10. Take a cue from the bedroom's architecture

white bedroom with shiplap paneling, gray wood flooring and a wooden bed

(Image credit: Future)

If you're lucky enough to have a bedroom with beautiful feature ceiling beams then fitting shiplap walls can be a great way to draw the eye upwards and showcase them, as has been done in this space. The white paneling also makes a great contrast to the rich wood of the antique bed. 

Does shiplap make a bedroom look bigger or smaller?

Shiplap walls can be a clever way to make bedrooms look bigger. When the boards are are horizontally the paneling can help the bedroom appear wider, while vertical shiplap paneling will draw the eye up and make the bedroom appear taller.

How do you make bedroom shiplap look modern?

Shiplap bedroom walls are a feature often associated with coastal and country homes and are a timeless look that do not go out of style. To make bedrooms with shiplap walls look modern consider keeping the wall decor to a minimum and instead choose a few well-chosen pieces of statement furniture. Painting the walls a bright white, grey or even decorating with black will bring a cool, sophisticated feel. 

Painting shiplap bedroom walls the same color as the door frames and trim or color drenching is another way to create a contemporary look.

Pippa Blenkinsop

Pippa is a contributor to Homes & Gardens. A graduate of Art History and formerly Style Editor at Period Living, she is passionate about architecture, creating decorating content, interior styling and writing about craft and historic homes. She enjoys searching out beautiful images and the latest trends to share with the Homes & Gardens audience. A keen gardener, when she’s not writing you’ll find her growing flowers on her village allotment for styling projects.