DIY Vertical Shiplap (Cheap & Easy)

18 Materials
1 Day

If you are looking for a cheap and easy DIY project to instantly update your home, give DIY vertical shiplap a try! The modern look of the shiplap installed vertically works perfectly with the modern farmhouse home.

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I couldn't wait to try my hand at faux shiplap again in our guest bathroom makeover, but this time I tried something new - VERTICAL SHIPLAP!

Step 1. Prep the wall. 

The wall that you are installing the vertical shiplap on should be clean and flat.

Step 2. Prime or paint wall.

If you have large patched areas on the wall like I did, you can start by applying a primer to the wall.

If your wall doesn't have large patched areas and is already painted, you can start by painting the wall behind the shiplap the color that your shiplap will be.

Step 3. Cut plywood down to size.

Using the table saw, rip the 1/4" plywood sheet down into slats. The width of the shiplap is up to you, but we used 6 inches for our vertical shiplap wall.

Step 4. Prime all sides of shiplap slats.

Painting shiplap is always easier before installing.

Step 5. Attach shiplap to wall vertically.

Start at one corner and work your way across the wall. To attach the vertical shiplap to the wall, apply construction adhesive to the back of the shiplap slat and press hard into place. Making sure your first piece is level and then nail or staple into place. 

In between each piece of vertical shiplap, use a nickel as a spacer. I slid the nickel up and down and used it as a spacer guide when attaching each slat to the wall.

Step 6. Add trim.

If you're taking your vertical shiplap partway up the wall like, attach a piece of trim to the top of the shiplap slats with construction adhesive and staples to finish things off. 

Step 7. Fill holes.

Next you want to fill all nail or staples holes with spackle and a putty knife. Wait to dry and sand smooth.

Step 8. Caulk corners and edges of shiplap. 

Step 9. Paint vertical shiplap.

 I did two coats of this color in a semigloss finish, which is the same paint that we use on all baseboards, trim and doors in our home.

Doesn't the vertical shiplap look great??? It looks great with our newly painted tile floors too, don't you think?

If you love these vertical wall installation and want to learn more like it, be sure to check out all of our woodworking tutorials in the archives here!

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Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!


Have a question about this project?

2 questions
  • Rosemary
    on Oct 6, 2020

    Looks great ..... so fresh! One question...if you glue the boards to the wall, will that damage the drywall if you decide to remove it? Nailing could be an option?

    • Agree with Emma that the drywall will be damaged if/when the shiplap is removed, but this drywall had a big hole patched anyway so it would have to be replaced no matter what. Also we have a ton of plumbing in this wall because our laundry room is on the other side so we didn't want to use any long nails and risk puncturing a pipe so we used shorter nails that wouldn't go all the way through the wall (which meant that the glue was helpful).

  • Donna Bailey Moss
    Donna Bailey Moss
    on Oct 6, 2020

    You said above to caulk corners and edges of shiplap. So, are you saying that you caulked in between each piece of shiplap?

Join the conversation

2 of 5 comments
  • Ellis
    on Oct 6, 2020

    Looks great. Another option, for a different look, would be beadboard. But I do love this ship lap installed vertically.

  • Linda
    on Oct 16, 2020

    Love it

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