Why Not to Use Shiplap: Alternatives for a Unique Home Design

Shiplap has been a popular home decor trend for quite some time, but it’s not all sunshine and rainbows. There are a few things to consider before jumping on the shiplap bandwagon. Here are some reasons why you might want to steer clear of shiplap in your home:
  • Shiplap is notorious for collecting dust. The gaps and grooves in the wood are the perfect place for dust to settle, making the room appear dirty even if it’s clean.
  • Poor installation can lead to warping or rotting. If shiplap isn’t installed correctly, it can cause serious issues down the road. It’s important to hire a professional installer or do your research before tackling it yourself.
  • Shiplap can be expensive. Depending on the type of wood, the size of the room, and the labor costs, shiplap can quickly become a pricy project that doesn’t necessarily add much value to your home.
  • While shiplap can be a beautiful addition to any home, it’s important to weigh the pros and cons before committing to it. Consider the maintenance involved, the potential installation pitfalls, and the cost before deciding whether or not shiplap is the right choice for your home.

    Why not to use shiplap?

    If you’ve been following home design trends, you’ve probably seen shiplap mentioned everywhere. This type of wooden paneling has gained popularity in recent years, particularly thanks to TV shows like Fixer Upper. While there’s no denying that shiplap can add a rustic and charming touch to a room, it’s not always the best choice. Here are some of the downsides to using shiplap in your home:
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    Dust and Dirt: The Major Downsides of Shiplap

    One of the main complaints from people who have shiplap in their homes is that it’s an ideal place for dust. Dust can settle in gaps and grooves, and make the room appear dirty. This is especially true if you have shiplap in a room that gets a lot of foot traffic. The dust that accumulates on the shiplap can be difficult to clean, too, since you’ll need to get into the gaps and grooves to remove it all.
    • Dust can settle in gaps and grooves making the room appear dirty.
    • Difficult to clean since one needs to get into the gaps and grooves to remove it all.

    Proper Installation is Key to Avoiding Warping and Rot

    Another issue with shiplap is that it needs to be installed correctly. If it is not installed correctly, shiplap could warp or cause rot. This can happen if the shiplap is not properly nailed in place, or if it is exposed to moisture. If you decide to use shiplap in your home, make sure to hire a trusted and experienced contractor who knows how to install it properly. Additionally, be sure to choose high-quality wood that is less likely to warp or rot.
    • Needs to be installed correctly to avoid warping or rot.
    • Shiplap that is not properly nailed in place, or if it is exposed to moisture can cause warping or rot.
    • Choose the right high quality wood that is less likely to warp or rot

    Shiplap Can Be Costly and Time-Consuming to Install

    Speaking of installation, shiplap can be costly and time-consuming to install. You’ll need to buy the wood, cut it to size, and then nail it into place. Additionally, you’ll likely need to hire a contractor to help with the installation process, which can add to the cost. If you’re on a tight budget or timeline, shiplap might not be the best choice for you.
    • Can be costly and time consuming to install.
    • Needs to buy the wood, cut it to size, and then nail it into place.
    • May need to hire a contractor to help with installation which adds to the cost.
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    Limited Design Options with Shiplap

    While some people might argue that shiplap is versatile when it comes to design, there are actually quite a few limitations. Shiplap can only be installed in a horizontal or vertical pattern. This means you’ll have limited options when it comes to creating unique designs or patterns on your walls. Additionally, shiplap tends to have a very specific look that might not work with all decorating styles.
    • Can only be installed in a horizontal or vertical pattern.
    • Have limited options when it comes to creating unique designs or patterns on your walls.
    • Shiplap tends to have a very specific look that might not work with all decorating styles.

    Shiplap Can Make a Room Feel Small and Cramped

    Another issue with shiplap is that it can make a room feel small and cramped. This is especially true if you have low ceilings or small windows. Shiplap tends to draw the eye in, which can make a room feel smaller than it actually is. If you have a small space that you’re trying to make feel larger, shiplap might not be the best choice.
    • It can make a room feel small and cramped.
    • Shiplap tends to draw the eye in, which can make a room feel smaller than it actually is.
    • May not be the best choice for small spaces.

    Alternative Design Options for Achieving a Similar Look to Shiplap

    If you love the look of shiplap but don’t want to deal with any of the downsides, there are alternative design options to consider. One popular option is faux shiplap, which is made from materials like MDF or plywood. Faux shiplap is cheaper and easier to install than real shiplap, and it doesn’t come with the same maintenance issues. Another option is wallpaper that features a shiplap design. This is a great choice if you want the look of shiplap but don’t want to commit to a permanent installation.
    • Faux shiplap, made from materials like MDF or plywood, is cheaper and easier to install than real shiplap.
    • Wallpaper that features a shiplap design is a great choice if you want the look of shiplap but don’t want to commit to a permanent installation.
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    Maintenance and Upkeep Required for Shiplap Walls

    Lastly, it’s important to note that shiplap does require some maintenance and upkeep. You’ll need to keep it clean to avoid dust buildup, and you may need to perform routine checks for warping or rot. Additionally, if you ever decide to repaint or refinish your walls, you’ll need to remove the shiplap first.
    • Requires some maintenance and upkeep.
    • Needs to keep it clean to avoid dust buildup and may need to perform routine checks for warping or rot.
    • Requires to remove the shiplap first if ever decided to repaint or refinish your walls.
    In conclusion, while shiplap is a popular design trend, it’s not for everyone. Consider the downsides before deciding to install shiplap in your home. Keep in mind that there are alternative options that can give you a similar look without any of the hassle.

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