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One of the things I’ve missed the most from living in houses closer to 100 years old is all the amazing real plank walls, wood walls, wainscoting, ceilings and trim work that often comes along with those charming homes! But fortunately, some of that character can be added to a home of any age! That is my mission in this brand new house! It has just taken me almost four years to get to this point. But good things can come to those who wait!

In our kids’ upstairs bathroom, we added a simple faux board and batten treatment, minus the board. In other words, we just added trim work to the wall to give it the illusion of real wood board and batten. That is a great solution for many situations. But sometimes you don’t really want faux. You don’t want an illusion. You want real. Real feels so much different than faux. In a photo, faux can look almost real so it can fool the eye. But in person, nothing beats the feel and texture of real wood. And I like my home to FEEL right to me, not just look right.

So as a part of our quest to fix up our house this year (repair stuff we’ve neglected, ignored or damaged or in general needed a facelift), we decided to add some real wood shiplap style planks to our entry and hallway and kitchen. Those walls all connect to each other and all of them needed a little facelift for one reason or another. They are in high traffic areas so it makes sense they’d be a little bit abused over the four years we’ve lived here.

While plaster walls in an old house can be a challenge to work with and repair, drywall is a bigger pain in the rump. At least according to me and my experience. And, unless drywall is really smooth and well done, it just doesn’t do much for the old house character of a home.

But real wood walls and wainscoting? Mmmm mmm mmm so good for charming things up. You might remember this map wall from a bazillion years ago. Have I blogged about it? No. Bad blogger. But once we get all the trim and flooring done I’ll definitely make it a featured post and tell you all more about it.

We still have quite a bit of finishing work and painting to do (and our new floors go in tomorrow!) but I can already tell — our new wood work and walls have completely changed the vibe of our home for the better. Honestly, I can’t stop staring at all the wood. Makes my heart so happy.

For those of you wanting to know details on the wood, it is tongue and groove pine planks. I believe they are close to five inches wide. We chose primed pine because it would be easy to paint. We technically used the back side of beadboard paneling, but these boards are made so you can use either side depending on what look you want. If we used the front side it would have created a beadboard effect, and we wanted the v-groove plank effect. I learned that trick in our old house when we planked the sides of our cabinetry with the back of tongue and groove beadboard.

On the wall that we wanted the horizontal planks, we simply turned the boards sideways and installed it floor to ceiling. So yeah, sideways and backwards is kind of how we roll around here. And on the rest of the walls where we wanted a traditional vertical wainscoting, we used the boards vertically. Our wainscoting is five feet tall. With tongue and groove paneling there is no need to prime or paint the wall first as you cannot see any spaces in the paneling.

We kept our trim style super simple to fit with the simple moldings throughout our home. The baseboards will be reinstalled once the flooring goes in.

We had a contractor install our paneling and trim work for us, because we chose to put our time and talents elsewhere. Woodworking is just not one of those things we want to do ourselves, but certainly with modifications to the materials, project, or the right skill and tools it is a project that a DIY’er could attempt. There are SO many ways to add wood walls and trim work to suit your style and budget!

There is a bit more new trim work in our family room, but you’ll see that in an upcoming post, along with many more pictures of remodeling progress. This week our new floors are going in! We are still waiting on the fireplace tile and kitchen cabinet paint but other than that, we are winding down to start gearing up for the holidays! {Keeping it real? Hate me but we have already decorated one of our Christmas trees. I’ll show & tell you more about it later this week.}

With simple changes like real wood wainscoting, we are turning our builder house into something more closely resembling the home I dream about. Or at least the “reasonable” home I dream about. Ha.

Are you making simple changes over time to your home to get it closer to what you’d like it to be? 

Related inspiration post: Plank Walls 

http://theinspiredroom.net/2012/11/12/remodeling-updates-adding-character-with-plank-wall-woodpaneling/