Knotty pine paneling is a versatile way to make walls and ceilings look great! Here we are talking about ¾” thick planks and not 4’x 8’ thin sheets of paneling. Today’s knotty pine paneling is a better product than our grandfathers used. Its tongue and groove with the end-matching design allow it to go up faster, easier, and with virtually zero waste.

There are several ways to make pine paneling look more modern without painting it, such as:

  • Using a chic layout
  • Installing whitewashed panels
  • Varying the width of the panels
  • Mixing and matching colors
  • Using it as wainscoting

The tongue and groove, end-matching design is easy to install with a nail gun. Today’s knotty pine is available in top-quality pieces at affordable prices that will last a lifetime.

Pine Paneling Turns Modern with a Chic Layout

The traditional way of installing knotty pine paneling is horizontally and vertically. You can modify the layout pattern to create eye-catching and vibrant walls by:

  • Installing panels diagonally at 45-degree angles
  • Using a herringbone layout
  • Creating a chevron design
  • Combining vertical and horizontal patterns
  • Designing your own unique layout

Using tongue and groove end/matching panels provides the major benefit of snapping together on or between wall framing. There is no need to end-butt/splice them on the centers of studs or nail up additional framing for installation. You can also use different color stains and different widths of paneling to make something extraordinary!

Pine Paneling Turns Modern by Whitewashing One or More Rooms

Walls and ceilings can present a gorgeous effect with whitewashed pine paneling. The good news is you do not need to apply the whitewash yourself because you can order the panels in a pre-finished condition. A favorite stain color finish is White Ash which is just the right shade to blend with many different room decors.

Ceiling paneling finished with White Ash brightens up rooms while retaining the wood grain texture. Combine wainscoting with whitewashed walls above for an awesome appearance. 

“Knotty pine paneling is a versatile way to make walls and ceilings look great! Today’s knotty pine paneling is a better product than our grandfathers used.”

Vary the Width of the Panels for a Cool Look

If uniform widths of paneling are not to your liking, use different widths to create a unique effect. Knotty pine is typically ¾” thick, up to 8 feet long, and comes in these widths:

  • 4” unfinished and pre-finished with a clear coat
  • 5” unfinished and pre-finished with a clear coat
  • 6” unfinished and pre-finished with a clear coat
  • 8” unfinished and pre-finished with a clear coat

Since the tongue and groove, end-matching design is consistent from panel to panel, it is no problem to stack different widths. Each row should be the same width whether you are installing panels horizontally, vertically, or diagonally. This layout pattern can be used for both walls and ceilings.

Mix and Match Colors with Stain

Mixing and matching colors is another option that will catch your attention. Create your colors with some quality stain instead of paint to retain the natural wood characteristics. Darker shades will make rooms look a little darker and more formal, while lighter hues brighten up rooms.

You can create some amazing walls by using more than one color. Consider these guidelines:

  • Think about the effect you want to achieve
  • You can create a contrast that is either bold or subtle or anything in between
  • Create artistry by accenting elements in a room
  • Color combinations do not have to come from the same color family
  • Choose the color ratios one to another
  • Consider the color of the ceilings

Here is some great ‘color advice from Mansion Global that will be helpful.

Try Wainscoting to Highlight a Room or Two  

Wainscoting walls is a traditional wall concept that is making a strong comeback. The lower part of the wall is made of pine planks that range from 32” to 42” in height. The top half of the wall can consist of painted drywall, wallpaper on drywall, brick or stone veneer, or other wood materials. Chair rail or some other type of molding/trim is placed over the top of the paneling.

This layout breaks up the wall design so it is more attractive and provides protection from chairs bumping into it. The stain for the paneling is available in a wide range of colors to meet your décor’s composition. This age-old wall arrangement looks just as good today as it did 200 years ago.

Use the information we provided and some creativity of your own to make those knotty pine walls a thing of beauty and joy.

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