#shiplap On A Budget


So I don’t know about you guys, but I always find myself wanting to do house projects this time of year. The hustle and bustle of the holiday season is over, 3 of our 4 kids have birthdays within 1 month (not sure what it is about March) and once you take down all of the holiday decor, your house just seems so empty! We have a front room in our house that is NEVER used. Our house is not nearly big enough to have a room in it that isn’t used. I’m also home all day which equals lots of time to stare at things in my house and decide I’m sick of them. My husband loves this.

Also in this front room, was a wall of espresso shelving units that I had accessorized with photos of our family, old books, vases, baskets…basically a lot of stuff. Well every time I needed to dust these shelves all of that stuff had to be moved, which led to a lot less dusting of shelves that needed to be dusted quite often.  Every time I would walk by them it would make me cringe. All the dust…everywhere…so much. So what would I do? Draw the blinds. Note: sunlight makes dust much more evident. Who wants to live in the dark all the time??? (Picture of the gross dusty shelves below, not a great picture but the only one I could find)

They had to go. My husband did not share these sentiments and was not exactly excited about starting another project that would cost more money that we didn’t have to spend on a room that didn’t “need” to be redone. I already had my mind made up, and one to not give up easily tried convincing him how much happier this would make our family. The kids would have a space of their own to hang out, do their homework, play games etc. He did like the idea of the kids having their own space because for some reason he doesn’t like sending the kids off to their rooms to do their homework, he thinks they should be out with us while they are working on schoolwork…I know I don’t get it either.

He still wasn’t sold. Then the idea came to me. I’ll sell everything in the room that we won’t be using on Craigslist and use the money that I make for the room reno! He was sold. I took pictures, I posted, I sold. One lady came in to buy the shelves for her store displays, and over the course of a half hour ended up buying almost everything from the room. Like literally took everything off of the walls, throw pillows, tables, things I didn’t even know I was selling…she had to make 4 trips to load everything! This was a blessing, when my husband came home from work that day and all that was left was a sofa, area rug and lamp we really had no choice.

Blank slate. I knew on the wall where the dusty shelves were I wanted to put up shiplap. We decided to wrap that down the hall that was connected to that wall as well. We had attempted at one point to do a sort of faux wainscoting in the hallway, but that was a flop and my hallway sat half finished for a couple years. Yes I know, we move so quickly.

I did some reading and since we would be painting the shiplap we decided on using a less expensive plywood. I did some measuring and decided we needed 8 sheets of plywood to cover the area we were working with. We didn’t know exactly what we were looking for so off to the hardware store we went. We ended up going with 1/4″ luan plywood which was around $12 a sheet at Menards. This stuff is pretty flimsy. Luckily Adam (the husband, I have now decided to name him) has a pretty nice setup in his shop and didn’t have a ton of trouble cutting it, I would recommend this be a 2 person job. We decided to cut our boards 8″ wide which gave us 6 boards per sheet of plywood. From my research 6″ is a common width but I didn’t want it to be too busy so we went 8″ and I’m happy we did. Once all the boards were cut we (by we I mean Adam) nailed them up on the walls using 1 1/4″ brad nails. We used a nickel thickness spacer, although halfway through we just kind of started winging it. Make sure to hit studs along the way, Adam did this by marking the studs on the ceiling which was smart because once the wall is covered in wood there will be no stud finding going on. We also needed the studs marked for the main attraction of the room, that will be another post so stay tuned! (Hint: It’s a suspended desk!) You will need to measure and cut around outlets and switches, we had a thermostat and a doorbell to work around in the hallway as well as an AprilAire that Adam used to flood our basement a few years ago after it had just previously been redone following a water heater failure that caused water damage, that got disconnected and I was happy to see it go.

Once all the wood was hung, Adam caulked the corners, at the ceiling and baseboards. Make sure to use paintable caulk! I spackled over the nails, primed and painted. I started painting with a brush but could definitely see brush marks so I switched to a small foam roller which worked perfectly.

I ran across this sign at Gordman’s and had to have it! It was only 39.99 and 5′ long! I knew I could work it in somehow.

Photo of wall primed, excuse the mess, this is a construction zone

And painted…I used a Benjamin Moore color, Swiss Coffee

Up next: how we finished this wall off! And now the chevron wall next to it has to go….shhhhh!

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