Hi all, Martin here with a new DIY project that will definitely add some grown-up sophistication to your walls in any room, and keep your guests wondering if it’s real or faux. I’m really into architectural details that echo old-world craftsman style, especially the look of wainscoting. Adding real wainscoting panels to the entire bottom half of a wall can be a bit pricey. OK, a lot pricey. But adding moulding, trim, and other millwork products directly to your drywall is an excellent way to imitate real wainscoting and integrate that same charm into your own style. Whether your house is a craftsman bungalow or a contemporary developer-built two-story, you can still honor your home’s style and design sense by adding faux wainscoting.
You can find a ton of ideas on sites like Today’s Homeowner with Danny Lipford, Houzz, and Pinterest. Yeah, I’m not ashamed to admit it, I like my Pinterest. There are limitless styles and heights and wainscoting designs you can create. You can choose to do a half a wall, or do an entire wall. I’m a big fan of this picture-framing style. They attached strips of moulding directly to the wall to look like raised panels. What makes this project so do-able is using a product like prefinished trim and moulding from Inteplast Building Products. It comes prefinished in a wide range of colors, as well as a white, paintable option so you can match any color you want. In addition to the faux wainscoting, you can add window and door trim, ceiling crown moulding, and baseboards for a complete craftsman-style room.
In this office space photo with faux wainscoting, the owners kicked it up a notch by adding a dark blue paint to the bottom half of the wall before adding the picture-frame detail. I like it!
Faux wainscoting isn’t just for the living or dining room. Check out this nursery wall! They applied the same picture-framing detail over a wall that’s been painted with stripes, and then they painted the centers to match the top half of the wall. You could even use fabric on the wall instead of paint. You’re only limited by your imagination!
Not sure you’re ready to tackle an entire faux wainscoting wall? No problem, start small. Try just adding chair rail and some baseboard to a room to get you in the DIY mood and see where it takes you. Here’s a simple chair rail project I tackled in my mom’s entryway (Harley was a big help as you can see).
A chair rail today, wainscoting tomorrow. Happy moulding, and thanks for reading!
Martin (and Harley)