One of the most popular home decor trends right now is shiplap. But you don’t need to feel limited to installing the shiplap in only the most commonplaces, like the bedroom or kitchen—you can use it anywhere! Don’t believe us? Let’s talk about how to install shiplap in a bathroom.
“Shiplap” is a type of siding that has grooves between the boards, giving it a rustic, beachy look. It’s super popular right now in home decor, and its popularity has led to many people incorporating shiplap into their homes.
Here, we focus on how to install a DIY shiplap bathroom. While this may seem like an odd choice, a shiplap in a bathroom can give you a beautiful, rustic look without having to build out the entire room from scratch. It’s also great for bathrooms that are looking a little dated, or for people who want to upgrade their bathrooms without doing a complete rebuild.
Install shiplap in your bathroom can seem like a daunting task—but it doesn’t have to be!
Why should you install shiplap in your bathroom?
Let’s be honest: there are a million reasons not to shiplap your bathroom. It’s hard, it’s messy, and you could destroy your entire bathroom if you don’t do it right.
So why should you install a shiplap in your bathroom? Well, because once you’re done, you’ll have a beautiful space that looks like you hired a professional to get the job done! And all of your friends will totally think that’s what you did. The pride that comes from knowing that you’re so good at installing a shiplap everyone thinks you’re an expert—will just come bubbling up inside you until finally: “I installed it myself!”
You may have heard that installing a shiplap is a great way to enhance the look of your living room or bedroom. But what about your bathroom? Many people don’t realize it, but installing a shiplap in the bathroom can actually be a cost-effective and beautiful way to give your bathroom an updated look.
There is lots of different wood shiplap available, but we’ll focus on one that’s durable, easy to clean, and stain-resistant: vinyl. Vinyl shiplap comes in a variety of colors and designs, and it’s easy enough for even beginner DIYers to install themselves—which means you’ll save money by not having to hire a contractor. If you’re interested in giving this project a try, here’s everything you need to know.
What to Consider Before Installing a Shiplap
Installing a shiplap is an excellent way to add character to any home. Before you get started, though, make sure you consider:
- Cost: Shiplap can be expensive if you hire a professional. It costs between $1 and $4 per square foot.
- Ease of Installation: Shiplap will require a saw, planks, nails or screws, a level and pencil, and a tape measure. You may also want to consider painting or staining.
- Skills Needed: If you aren’t super handy with tools, install shiplap in a bathroom can be difficult.
This great DIY project comes with some challenges, though. Here are three things to consider before installing a shiplap:
- Is the wall straight?
- How are the seams going to look?
- Are your floor joists strong enough?
Choose your materials.
Install shiplap in your bathroom is a great way to create a bold and striking design statement. Install shiplap in your bathroom is a fairly quick and easy DIY project that will give your space a fresh look. The key to success is choosing the right materials and tools for the job.
- Shiplap planks (typically pine or cedar)
- Plywood boards
- Wood glue
- Wood screws
- Drill with screwdriver bit and hammer bit attachments
- Hammer or nail gun
- Tape measurer
- Wood Saw (power saw recommended)
- Chalk line
- Stud finder
- Wood filler (optional)
- Pencil and paper for measurements
- Sander and sandpaper
Decide how you want to finish it.
You can choose from different options, such as paint or stain. You’ll need to decide how you want to finish your shiplap before you install it. It’s better to plan ahead so that you won’t be unhappy with your last look.
Do you want the raw wood look, or do you want to paint it? If you’re going for the raw wood, look, then go with untreated wood. Otherwise, go with pre-painted wood to save yourself some work.
Measure your walls and mark them off with painter’s tape. Measure the width of a plank and mark out how many boards can fit on each wall, then measure the height of the wall and divide that by the height of a plank. Mark, where each piece will use a level to make sure everything is straight.
Don’t forget about the baseboards! You’ll need something to cover up the gaps at the bottom of your wall unless you plan on filling them in with caulk.
Cut around outlets and fixtures. Consider any outlets or fixtures that need to be cut around. Use a jigsaw or a reciprocating saw if necessary (or just move the fixture if possible).
Nail it! Use finishing nails along with the wall studs instead of relying on nails in the drywall alone—that way your shiplap will stay put when you hang up some art. If you’re using paintable caulk, you can use the caulking gun to bulk out the gaps between your shiplap boards.
What are the main types of shiplap?
Shiplap paneling is the best thing to happen to walls since, well, ever. And we are definitely biased here, but we think it’s a good idea to know what you’re talking about when you go into your local home improvement store or start shopping online. So we’ve compiled a brief description of each type of shiplap paneling that’s available on the market today.
There are actually four main types of shiplap paneling. Let’s look at them now!
1. Faux Shiplap:
Faux Shiplap is not true shiplap paneling at all. It’s just flat boards arranged side-by-side with a small gap between them so that they appear to be overlapping one another, as shiplap does.
This is real shiplap paneling with a rabbet cut along the top and bottom edges of each board. This allows the boards to overlap one another in order to create a tight weather seal. If you installed the panels in an outdoor environment, such as an exterior wall or a shed roof, the rabbet cuts also create channels that allow for water drainage and ventilation.
3. Tongue & Groove Paneling:
Also known as T&G, this type of shiplap is the most commonly used in homes. Tongue and groove shiplap comes in varying widths; the most common being. The boards overlap one another so that they create a tight seal. The boards are also easily installed with no tools.
4. Nickel Gap Paneling
Nickel gap shiplap is like tongue and groove because it creates a tight seal when placed together. However, there is one major difference between these two types of shiplap: nickel gap has a wider gap than tongue and groove. This wider gap gives nickel gap boards more texture and depth when they’re placed next to each other. It’s also easier to install than tongue and groove because of its wider gaps, which allow for less precision.
How do you install shiplap in a bathroom?
Shiplap is a DIYer’s dream—it’s easy to install and adds an instant pop of character to any space! If you’re ready to transform your bathroom into a rustic paradise, here’s what you need to know. There’s one way to make your bathroom feel more like a home spa. It’s by installing a shiplap. But where do you start?
Here are the steps you need to take:
Preparing the bathroom for the installation of shiplap
Before you install the shiplap, you need to take some time to prep your bathroom.
1. First things first: make sure your bathroom is prepared and ready for installation. Because you’ll be running wood up and down all three walls of your bathroom, this is going to take some time, so double-check that you covered all the electrical outlets before you installed it.
2. Make sure there are no leaks or moisture problems in the room. If there are, you’ll need to get those fixed before proceeding; otherwise, the shiplap could warp. Next, make sure all your surfaces are clean and level, including drywall. You should address any uneven areas before the installation begins.
3. Clear out your bathroom and remove all the hardware (think light fixtures, sinks, toilets, showerheads). Then patch any holes or cracks in the walls. Next, wipe down the entire room with a damp cloth to remove any dust or debris. Finally, cover all surfaces with painter’s tape to protect them from over-spray.
Now that everything is prepared and ready,
Measure your space.
Many people have been talking about shiplap lately—and for good reason! It’s an inexpensive and easy way to add some texture and interest to your bathroom. But before you go splashing out on shiplap, here’s what you need to know.
You’ll want to measure the space you want to cover with shiplap, so you can figure out how much material you’re going to need. Do this by measuring the height and width of the walls that will be covered with shiplap (use a pencil and paper to make a rough sketch if that helps). Then, multiply the height by the width. This will give you the square footage of the wall.
Now that you know how many square feet of shiplap you’ll need, it’s time to head to the store! While you might find pre-cut pieces of shiplap at some stores (be sure to check the “custom wood” aisles), it’s usually easier to just buy entire boards and cut them yourself. When you’re at the store, ask for “shiplap.” If someone doesn’t know what that is, ask for a “tongue-and-groove or clapboard that can be stained or painted.”
Choosing the type of shiplap (material wise)
There are many types of shiplap siding to choose from, and they can install all of them in the bathroom, but not all of them will be the best choice for your particular bathroom.
For shiplap, there are a lot of options. You could go with the standard pine or cedar, or you could opt for MDF (which is more cost-effective). Either option is great for your bathroom.
You can use most types of shiplap in the bathroom—just use a sealant on any wood you use in your bathroom renovation.
Here are some of our favorite kinds:
1. classic pine:
These are the most affordable planks, but they can dry out and warp over time, especially if you’re using them in a place with high humidity levels, like a bathroom. Seal them with a clear finish that will protect them from moisture damage.
2. White-washed pine:
These are painted white, which looks great if you want to add a rustic flair to your decor—and it’ll also help protect them from the elements. If you want to get even more protection and make it easier to wipe down these planks, consider sealing them with epoxy instead of paint.
Cedar is naturally resistant to moisture damage, which makes it an excellent choice for bathrooms. You can leave cedar unsealed for a natural look or choose to seal it for extra protection and color options (you can stain or paint it). Just make sure that you use an oil-based stain or paint for durability in wet areas like bathrooms.
Once you’ve chosen your wood type, make sure you seal it against moisture with water-resistant primer and paint before hanging it up—and don’t forget to seal the joints between each piece.
You’ll want to consider the level of water exposure that your walls will have when choosing what type of shiplap you will use. If your bathroom is more traditional and has a tub or shower with a curtain, you can choose a more decorative option, such as nickel-gap shiplap.
If, however, your bathroom has a walk-in shower or soaking tub, you’ll want to go with water-resistant material like cement board. As a result, you won’t have to worry about mold growing on your walls if you don’t keep them absolutely dry.
Finishing a bathroom is one of the most challenging DIY projects that a homeowner can undertake, given the number of potential hazards, such as moisture, mold, electrical wires, and plumbing. Even experienced home repair experts are at risk if they don’t follow safety guidelines while working with these materials. The good news is that installing vinyl Wall planks shiplap panels is a straightforward project for homeowners who are interested in trying their hand at being their own general contractor, as there are no hazards present when installing vinyl shiplap walls panels.
Once you’ve selected a type of shiplap and installed it on your walls, it’s time to consider how much light is coming into the room. You can paint the lower half of the wall a lighter color or add plants and other natural elements to brighten up the space without having too much glare on shiny surfaces like mirrors or faucets.
PVC shiplap for the bathroom
You can also use PVC instead of wood or MDF shiplap. PVC panels are available in a variety of colors. You can make them to any size, and because of their durability, they can last a lifetime. Get some PVC shiplap—make sure that it’s rated for bathroom use and get as many feet as you think you’re going to need. Since it’s PVC, it’s easy to cut, and it’s also lightweight, which makes it easier to install.
Vinyl shiplap for the bathroom
Vinyl Wall planks are a very budget-savvy option for adding extra design flair to your bathroom remodel. Even on a low budget, you can add modern style and luxury white vinyl shiplap to your bathroom with ease. You can choose from any of their existing patterns or create your own custom look for your bathroom. DIY is an option of some types but may not be recommended for beginners.
Cut your shiplap as needed.
Before you cut your shiplap, you need to decide how high up the wall you want it to go. The rule of thumb is that it should sit just below the ceiling line. You should account for wainscoting or molding around the room if you have a low ceiling and want the shiplap to start lower.
Once you’ve decided, use a measuring tape and pencil to mark off where you want each board to go. Use a level to ensure that your marks are even across the width of the room. You should continue this step until all of your boards are marked off with their placement on the shiplap accent wall.
Now for the fun part: cutting! Measure each board to match the length of your marks on the wall and cut using a saw. If there is an edge to the area that is not joined by another wall, be sure to start on that side rather than a corner and work your way to the corner.
Choose your shiplap color.
It’s hard to know how to choose a shiplap color for your bathroom. You want something that fits the aesthetic of your home but also works in a humid environment like the bathroom.
First, choose the color of the shiplap that you want in your bathroom. You can go with a classic white color or choose something that pops a little more. If you are looking for something more traditional, you’ll want to pick a warmer tone like brown or red.
When selecting a shiplap color for your bathroom, you have a lot of options. For example, you might choose a bright white paint color to match the sink and shower. If you’re going more rustic with your decor, you might choose a darker wood stain.
If you are looking for something more modern, then try a turquoise or navy blue hue, or the classic shiplap jet black color! Once you’ve chosen the right shade of shiplap for your bathroom, it’s time to get started on installing it.
Installing the shiplap
First, install the baseboard. Because shiplap is so thin, you can use conventional baseboards, but I wanted a more modern look,
The rest of the boards should stay level as long as the first one is. I was more concerned about lining up the lines in the corners.
I used 1′′ nails and my nail gun to secure the boards at the ends and at the wall studs. Use a stud finder to locate the studs.
We shouldn’t glue the boards. Please respect the person removing them. If unsure, wait for the end-grain boards and track one of those top and bottom:
Consider the height of your trim. Make the third wall divide. So a third or two-thirds of the wall looks better than half. It won’t be flawless, but try to get near.
I wanted mine to go higher, but it would have made the electrical outlet, towel racks, and light switch inaccessible.
Unless it doesn’t, the wood glides into the v-grooves. It’s fine if some of them are odd or broken.
Nail them in place and caulk the seam to keep water out from under the wood. Apart from the shower and toilet, this is crucial. You don’t want mold to grow in any of your spaces.
A jigsaw or circular saw can cut around obstructions.
If you can’t use total lengths of wood for the wall, stagger the lengths as you proceed.
Although I like the look of staggered cuts, I also filled the seams. Soapy Dex Spackle fills up It dries pink and white. Perfect for covering up voids.
Caulk can disguise a lot of flaws. Always use paintable caulk! However, add the corner trim.
I need an outer corner piece. Not sure if I should have mitered the ends. possibly abrasive
If you plan to, paint colors on your boards.
Paint is one of the easiest ways to add personality to your boards. And it doesn’t have to be white! If you’d like a bolder, more unique look for your walls, consider painting your boards with an accent color that will complement the rest of your bathroom decor.
If you’re trying to install shiplap in a bathroom with a shower, keep in mind that you’ll need to make sure your boards are waterproof and water-resistant. You can do this by using a waterproof sealant or by applying several coats of paint to each board before installation.
Maintain the shiplap in the bathroom.
Shiplap is a great way to make your bathroom look as pretty and put-together as possible. With the right maintenance, it will hold up in the tough conditions of your bathroom, and you won’t have to worry about having to replace it or repair it. Here are some tips and tricks for maintaining your shiplap in the bathroom:
- Make sure you are wearing non-slip shoes, e.g., boat shoes.
- Be mindful of your clothes. Wearing anything that is not meant to get wet is unwise. We recommend a wetsuit, ideally one with built-in flippers, or one that is made of rubber or plastic.
- Set up a towel rack near the entrance to the bathroom so that you can dry yourself off before re-entering the house properly (or outside).
- You should leave the shiplap on at all times and be maintained regularly by a professional to ensure its integrity (i.e., water tightness).
- If it gets wet, dry it right away.
- Do not use harsh chemicals on the shiplap.
- Seal the shiplap carefully before installation so that it doesn’t absorb moisture from the room. Use a high-quality polyurethane sealant for best results.
- Use good-quality paint on your shiplap so that it holds up well in the bathroom environment.
- If you install your shiplap behind the toilet or sink, be sure to give it plenty of clearance so that it isn’t likely to get splashed with water while you’re using those fixtures.
- Do not let anybody else use the bathroom for any reason.
- Make sure that no one ever leaves the bathroom window open—not even an inch! You don’t want to risk any moisture getting in there and ruining your handiwork.
How to protect shiplap in a bathroom
One of the most common questions we get is how to protect shiplap in a bathroom.
Of course, you want to achieve the same gorgeous look and feel of a farmhouse master bathroom, but with all the moisture that can accumulate in bathrooms, it’s really important to make sure that you’re using a protective finish on your shiplap.
Luckily, there are plenty of options for you to choose from! Here are a few ways to get started:
For shiplap, there is no room in the house with more humidity than the bathroom. This is a key concern if you plan to install a shiplap in your bathroom because moisture can cause wood to warp and decay. If you’re planning on adding a bit of farmhouse style to your modern farmhouse bathroom, you’ll need to take some steps to protect your shiplap from humidity, like adding waterproofing or paint.
#1 Prep Your Walls
Before you start installing the shiplap in your bathroom, be sure that all the existing walls are clean and dry so that the shiplap will adhere properly. You’ll also want to make sure there is no sign of mold or mildew because these can spread quickly and cause damage.
#2 Choose Your Materials
When installing the shiplap in the bathroom, many choose a plywood option like MDF (medium-density fiberboard). This material doesn’t absorb moisture as much as regular wood, since it has been treated with resin for added protection against water damage.
#3 Add A Layer of Sealant
You want to make sure it properly sealed your shiplap before installing it so that it doesn’t end up absorbing moisture from the air and expanding over time, causing cracking or warping.
Sealants are available in a variety of forms and can be used for different purposes when applying them to your new shiplap installation. You’ll want to find a sealant that fits your needs and can be used for multiple reasons to complete the DIY project.
#4 Choose the right paint.
How do you protect it from all the moisture and bodily fluids that can accumulate there?
The answer is simple: with the right paint.
When you’re shopping for shiplap paint, you have to be very careful—some paints are not water-resistant enough for your bathroom walls, and if you don’t know what you’re looking for, it’s easy to get stuck with a product that won’t last as long as you need it to. Luckily, we’ve done the research for you, and we can tell you exactly what kind of paint you need in order to make sure your shiplap walls will stand up to whatever your bathroom throws at them.
When choosing the right paint, look for these traits:
1. Water resistance:
You want to paint that will not start bubbling or peeling the second it gets wet. You can find this information by looking at the label and making sure it’s waterproof. If it doesn’t say that anywhere on the label, it’s not waterproof. Don’t buy it!
2. Stain resistance:
Look for a paint that is stain-resistant and has high levels of mildew resistance—it should say so right on the label. If there’s not enough information on the label, don’t buy it!
You’ll want to make sure that your paint has stain resistance. Shiplap is about letting the natural, rustic beauty of the wood shine through, so you don’t want a heavy or thick layer of paint covering up that gorgeousness. You need something that will protect you without hiding the grain.
What are the pros and cons of installing a shiplap?
Installing a shiplap in your bathroom is not a simple task, but it’s one that can make a vast difference to the look and feel of your space. Not only does the addition of a shiplap add a unique decorative touch, but it’s also a great way to add some extra insulation to your bathroom. It’s important to be aware of the pros and cons of installing a shiplap before committing to one, though.
Here are some pros:
- The shiplap is relatively inexpensive since it makes use of existing materials.
- In cold climates, shiplap can provide additional insulation for your bathroom.
- The shiplap adds texture and depth to your bathroom space.
- Shiplap is great for small bathrooms because it makes the room look bigger than it is (since the lines are horizontal).
- It’s easy to clean and maintain.
- Shiplap adds a rustic look to any room.
- Shiplap is great for bathrooms. They keep the moisture out and hold up beautifully. They add texture, warmth, and depth to an otherwise sterile space. Adding interest to your bathroom is a very low-cost way to do that.
And here are some cons:
- It takes time and effort to install the shiplap correctly, which may challenge for beginners.
- If you don’t have experience with carpentry work or are unfamiliar with DIY projects, then this could prove difficult for you.
- Shiplap can be hard to install sometimes. You may need special tools or professional help depending on the type of shiplap you want, and the tools required for installation may cost more than the shiplap itself. Also, if you’re not careful with installation, shiplap can cause mold and mildew problems in your bathroom.
- Shiplap is not as easy to install as sheetrock or drywall. You need to make sure that you have someone with experience. Install it for you if this is your first time installing it yourself.
- Shiplap can be expensive depending on where you buy it from, so shop around before making a final decision about where to purchase your supplies from.