Bob Vila Radio: What the Heck Is Shiplap?

It's taken the home design world by storm, but what is it? Here's a quick primer on shiplap.

What is shiplap? For one thing, it’s a trendy wood wall treatment. More specifically, the term “shiplap” refers to rough-sawn planks with grooves cut along the tops and bottom edges, allowing for a snug-fitting, flush-to-the-wall installation.

What Is Shiplap?



Listen to BOB VILA ON SHIPLAP or read below:

Originally, when shiplap first made the jump from shipbuilding to home construction, it served mainly as exterior siding. In recent years, however, creative homeowners have been using shiplap to create wide-ranging, dramatic effects inside the home.

Different finishes and lighting effects work differently to highlight or deemphasize the horizontal seams between the interlocking wall planks. If you finish shiplap with clean, white paint, then pair it with natural wood flooring and soft, colorful accents, you end up with a classic Cape look. Stain the shiplap, on the other hand, and you achieve a more rustic aesthetic, with the character of the underlying wood as the star of the show.

With shiplap as a design component, the possibilities are nearly endless!

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