How I Used Cedar Shake as an Cottage Style Accent Wall

Libbie B
by Libbie B
4 Materials
2 Days

I have wanted to add some warmth and texture to this room. I love the paint and trim color but wanted to give the space more visual interest and a cottage/coastal feel. Then last week, we were adding some replacement pieces of cedar shake shingles to the outside, and a lightbulb went off! If I used it as an accent wall, it would look pretty and would add the perfect amount of cottage vibe.

Here is what the space looked like when we bought the house last Spring. Yikes!

So I was using leftover shingles I had from an outdoor project. I lined the cedar shake shingles along the wall to decide the pattern (cedar shake comes in different widths within the box).

I then used a pneumatic nailer (you can rent these from your nearest big box store) to attach the shingles to the wall with the thin side at the top. I made sure to nail them three inches from the top, where the next row would cover the nail holes.

I kept the rows going until……I RAN out of shingles!! Normally this would not be a big deal. However, if you have recently tried to DIY anything (wood products especially), they are shipping very slowly. Another box would be three to four weeks, and I couldn’t wait. We had Airbnb guests checking in later in the week. So I sort of “Hodge podge,” the last corner piece, and moved on to a plan “B.”

Before we get to plan B, First, I lightly hand sanded the shingles as they were a little rough. I then whitewashed the cedar. Whitewashing is a simple process that I have used before. Dilute some leftover paint with water and paint it on. I used three parts water to one part paint and wiped it on with a rag to apply.

I then went over it to add more color wherever I thought it needed more coverage and even it out.

Back to plan B. I had a little more than half of a wall covered with shingles, so what to do? I decided to add a plant shelf. A shelf would act as a stopping point and allow for more color!! Bonus win. I painted the shelf the same color as the wall trim (SW Morning Fog).

Here it is finished. YAY!

I love the texture and the look! And it smells WONDERFUL!

For more accent wall inspiration:

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Libbie B
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  • Jean Jean on Jun 18, 2021

    It is so pretty. Love it. Good job 👏 how did you put the shelf on the wall. ? Thanks for sharing this.

  • Sheryll S Sheryll S on Sep 03, 2021

    I love the entire room! But I'm curious about the bed. Did you make it?

  • Deano Deano on Jun 22, 2022

    Talk about styles coming back, we put shingles on a powder room wall 40 years ago, I was thinking of replacing them with shiplap. Thank you for changing my mind 😀

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