How to Transform Your Plain Wall to Shiplap for $1!

2 Materials
1 Hour

Shiplap is everywhere and keeps popping up more and more every time I turn around. I have always been a fan but felt I didn’t have the right place for it, like it belonged in a big old farmhouse or a nice coastal house…but that is so not the case! Check out how easy it can be to transform your wall into a "sharpie shiplap wall" and cost $1 in total...all I had to buy was a sharpie marker from the dollar tree!

Start by painting the wall white, if it isn't already, and then take a dry brush and brush left to right to give it a wood grain kind of look. Once the paint dries, measure every 6 inches starting at the floor and go up the wall and make a mark with your pencil on the wall. Make sure its big and dark enough for you to easily find it again.

Once you’ve made your marks, take a level and a yardstick and draw a line across the wall, making sure it’s level all the way across! I checked my level on both ends and the middle just to make sure. And if you don't have a yardstick, any straight edged piece of wood will work!

Then take your sharpie marker and trace the pencil line, I used to level again with my yardstick just to make sure it stays level across the wall.

And there's your DIY sharpie shiplap wall! If you end up making a line too thick, or find any type of mistake, just use some white paint to cover and make the line again! It takes a double take before realizing this isn't actual panels on the wall, especially in areas with are covered with items for example, entry way walls with coats/baskets or in the kitchen as a backdrop. You could use this anywhere!

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Have a question about this project?

3 questions
  • Flipturn
    on Jun 11, 2020

    Your lines look very straight an even.

    Did you use a level set against the yard stick?

    • Lindsay Foy
      on Jun 11, 2020

      I did! I held the yardstick against the wall and placed the level on top of the yardstick..measured at the end, the middle and then the other end...once it was level I drew the line across.

  • Gaylyn Tate
    on Jun 13, 2020


    did you make a mud room structure using cabinets from Amazon. I thought I had it saved, but can’t find it. Help please if it was your post. It was so ingenious and good looking.

  • Lorraine
    on Jun 19, 2020

    is that a black sharpie? it looks gray

    • Lindsay Foy
      on Jun 19, 2020

      Yes a black sharpie, one of the photos shows the grey pencil line which was traced with a black sharpie

Join the conversation

3 of 10 comments
  • Vicki Hopkins Adkins
    on Jun 12, 2020

    Wow, what a great and easy idea! I have the perfect wall to try this technique. Thanks!

  • Lynne
    on Jun 12, 2020

    looks just like ship lap. awesome job!!

    • Marcy Dillman
      on Jun 30, 2020

      I tried this on a corner niche. It fools your eye from a distance but up close, yes, it’s lines on the wall :)

      I have textured walls - it would probably work better if your walls are an untextured flat surface.

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