May 18, 2021

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25+ Stylish Wainscoting Ideas


Add texture and visual design to your walls with these wainscoting ideas! We have traditional and unique styles to show off!

Looking for more wall ideas? Plywood wall treatments, sharpie wall designs, beautiful wallpapers, and decorative wall panels.

metropolis circles non-traditional wainscoting, Soul Style on Remodelaholic

The Ultimate Guide to Wainscoting:
25+ Stylish Wainscoting Ideas

Wainscoting is a classic way to add texture and interest to the walls of any room. Deciding what style and height of wainscoting, however, can be as tricky as choosing the color of paint! We’ve rounded up nearly 40 stylish wainscoting ideas that we’ve shown here on Remodelaholic to help you decide what look is best for your home.

Why Wainscoting?

Wainscoting can be used for many different reasons. Most commonly, wainscoting  is used to add interest and texture, even without adding color, such as this full paneled wall, shared with us by Decor Chick:

diy paneled wall, Decor Chick on Remodelaholic

Adding a little extra wainscoting can help dress up a standard chair rail and make it an architectural feature:

decorative wall panel wainscoting, My Cottage Charm on Remodelaholicshared by My Cottage Charm

Wainscoting helps enhance the structure and design of the room. Merely by splitting the wall into two sections and giving the eye a line to follow, wainscoting helps the room feel bigger. Molding and wall treatments can also help a tall space feel fitting instead of echoey-large, such as this tall 7-foot wainscoting in this extra-tall 14-foot entryway, shared by Design Dump.

tall wainscoting in a tall entry, Design Dump on Remodelaholic

Wainscoting can also be a wonderful solution to disguising some of your home’s quirks, such as oddly placed utility access points. The Modern Parsonage shared how they hid their plumbing access by dressing it up to match the wainscoting.

hide plumbing access with wainscoting, The Modern Parsonage on Remodelaholic

Taller wainscoting ideas with a ledge on top provides a great place to add decor, especially if you intend to switch it out frequently.

beadboard wainscoting with ledge, Tell'er All About It on Remodelaholic wainscoting ledge, 33 Shades of Green on Remodelaholic

guest room updates by Tell’er All About It  | home tour by 33 Shades of Green

And styles? There are so many different styles of wainscoting!

Beadboard Wainscot

Beadboard is a wonderful wainscot material because it is quick to install and doesn’t require as much of the measuring and math as many of the other styles of wainscoting do. Check out these beadboard wainscoting ideas.

Simple Beautiful Home installed beadboard wainscoting in a half bath remodel.

half bath remodel with beadboard wainscoting, Simple Beautiful Home on Remodelaholic

And The Reformed Ranch installed a tall beadboard wainscot in a farmhouse dining room.

industrial farmhouse dining room beadboard wainscoting, The Reformed Ranch on Remodelaholic

You can also add a ledge to beadboard wainscoting like we did in our Logan House bathroom

beadboard wainscoting with ledge, Remodelaholic

or install the beadboard horizontally like we did in the half bath that we added to our Logan House.

half bath remodel with horizontal beadboard wainscoting, Remodelaholic

And if you’re going for a different look, just paint the beadboard black like The DIY Diaries did in their modern powder room:

black beadboard wainscoting, The DIY Diaries on Remodelaholic

Board and Batten Wainscoting

Justin and I have used board and batten in most of our homes. You can alter the height to fit your style and the room, and choose an installation method to fit your budget, time, and skill level.

Board and batten can be chair-rail height (about 4 feet, typically), like in this tutorial that Small Town Idaho Life shared with us:

inexpensive board and batten wainscot, Small Town Idaho Life on Remodelaholic

 or taller like Superwoman Brittany shared with us in her living room remodel, or like Justin and I installed in our Logan House master bedroom:

living room with tall board and batten wainscoting, Superwoman on Remodelaholic tall board and batten wainscoting, Remodelaholic

 or you can keep it going full height, right up to the ceiling, like we have done in our current house. (I wrote up detailed spacing and installation tutorials for you.)

board and batten wainscoting wall tutorial, Remodelaholic

You can also split up the board and batten style to make a paneled wall with stacked squares like these:

faux board and batten, Little Blue Chairs on Remodelaholic stacked square wainscoting, LA LA Land on Remodelaholic

$50 faux board and batten by Little Blue Chairs | dining room stacked square wainscoting by LA LA Land

 And board and batten is a great wainscoting style for stairs and stair walls… so long as you’re willing to do some angular math!

wainscoting on the stairs and stair wall, Impatiently Praying for Patience on Remodelaholicfoyer wainscoting by Impatiently Praying for Patience

Picture Frame Wainscoting

Picture frame style wainscoting is another popular style, especially in older homes where you need more classic styles to match the architecture. See some picture frame wainscoting ideas.

“True” wainscoting is a raised panel like Our Home from Scratch shared (with a tutorial!):

raised panel wainscoting, Our Home from Scratch on Remodelaholic

But you can create a faux picture frame wainscot like Southern Lovely shared here

diy wainscoting, Southern Lovely on Remodelaholic

and Involving Color shared here:

faux wainscoting for wood panels, Involving Color on Remodelaholic

You can also change things up and have two-tone picture frame molding like Little Miss Penny Wenny installed in her master bedroom:

update master bedroom with two-tone wainscoting, Little Miss Penny Wenny on Remodelaholic

Or add a little oomph to the picture frames by using paintable textured wallpaper to look like carved wainscot like Suzy’s Sitcom did:

faux wainscoting using paintable wallpaper, Suzy's Sitcom on Remodelaholic

Or you could follow this great tutorial from The Mustard Ceiling and have a wainscoting that mixes the styles of picture frame with the thicker boards like board and batten:

best most complete wainscoting tutorial ever, The Mustard Ceiling on Remodelaholic

Non-Traditional Wainscoting Ideas

If you’re looking for a wainscoting that will add architectural interest AND oomph, there are plenty of non-traditional and unique wainscot styles that will set your home apart from builder grade. Try one of these:

non-traditional square wainscoting, This Home of Ours on Remodelaholicoffset squares wainscoting (and tutorial) by This Home of Ours  

barn door wainscoting, Traci Monson on Remodelaholicbarn door wainscoting (and full tutorial!) by Traci Monson

metropolis circles non-traditional wainscoting, Soul Style on Remodelaholicmetropolis circles wainscoting by SoulStyle

striped painted wainscoting, Erin D Photography on Remodelaholicstriped painted accent wainscoting shared by Erin D Photography

painted striped wainscoting, Little Blue Chairs on Remodelaholicstriped painted tall wainscoting shared by Little Blue Chairs

trellis wainscoting, Watch Me Daddy on Remodelaholic

trellis wainscoting by Watch Me Daddy

and one of my favorites

easy plank wall wainscoting, Remodelaholichorizontal plank wall wainscoting by us here at Remodelaholic 🙂

Wainscoting for Every Room!

Try it, try it, and you may; try it and you may LOVE IT, I say… (Sorry, apparently I read Green Eggs and Ham too much!)

Try it…

on the stairs and in the hall (by Sawdust Girl)

wainscoting on the stairs and hallway, Sawdust Girl on Remodelaholic

in a reading nook (by Pretty Handy Girl)
tall wainscoting in closet reading nook, Pretty Handy Girl on Remodelaholic

in a powder room (by Sixteen Fourteen)

tall powder room wainscoting, Sixteen Fourteen on Remodelaholic

in the living room (by The Thriftress)
simple picture frame wainscoting, The Thriftress on Remodelaholic

in the entry (by Willow Wisp Cottage)
simple faux picture frame wainscoting, Willow Wisp Cottage on Remodelaholic

in the basement (by Dixie Delights)basement remodel with board and batten wainscoting, Dixie Delights on RemodelaholicSo, what do you say? Have all these wainscoting ideas inspired you to let this Sam-I-Am convince you to love green eggs and ham, er, wainscoting? Or or are you already on board the wainscot train, heading straight to awesome?

For more stylish wall ideas, check out these:

DIY Stamped Wall (with a DIY stencil!)
Creating Beautiful Storage Space Within Bathroom Walls
3-D Wall Panels with Board and Batten
Elegant Paneled Wall Treatment

Please pin this post for later:

Wainscoting Ideas, Tutorials And Styles From Remodelaholic

Beadboard Wainscoting Styles And Ideas From Remodelaholic

Picture Frame Wainscoting, Board And Batten Wainscoting, Ideas And Tutorials From Remodelaholic

The Ultimate Guide to Wainscoting: 25+ wainscoting ideas and styles | Remodelaholic.com #wainscoting #inspiration #design #walls @Remodelaholic

Originally posted 8.12.2013 // Updated 2.3.2021

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