Wainscot - The Evergreen Architectural Element that Lifts Your Decor!

All About Wainscoting

wainscot It can be hard to come up with ideas to improve the aesthetics of your home. It is costly, time consuming, and the decision once made is often one that people are stuck with once the project is completed. Of all of the different popular paneling types, there seem to be few that rival the beauty of wainscoting. There are a multitude of wainscoting ideas to consume on the Internet, with many of these sources being very capable of providing you with some very attractive options.

Our goal is to make you more informed about wainscoting and provide you with some ideas and information that will help you in your journey to adorn your home with something truly incredible.

Wainscot Definition

The definition of wainscot, found here, is actually a little interesting, especially when you think about the etymology. The actual term applied to oak boards that were produced in medieval Poland and surrounding areas, which were then exported to various locations in western Europe. The actual etymology, according to Oxford, says that it comes from medieval German - wagenschot, which means wagon board.

The problem here is that wainscot was actually too pricey and valuable to be used in making wagons. Also, 18th and 19th-century sources state that it actually comes from wageschot, a term that means 'wall-board'. As such, the term wainscot was a riven oak board and wainscoting was the actual paneling that was made from it. Its high quality made it a pretty big hit in European countries, especially in Holland and England.

Unfortunately, this type of wood was ultimately superseded by softwoods, especially Scots pines and spruce from Norway.

Wainscoting Ideas

wainscot ideas As you know, there is no shortage of amazing wainscoting ideas on the Internet. Many of them can have a positive impact on your home if applied correctly. Of all ideas, there are some that seem to stand out for most homeowners. A good example of this is a pre-made kit. Wainscoting kits are good for people who are interested in DIY, but there are some issues. The price point may be one for many, size is another. Many of the attractive kits are limited to the height of 32-38 inches, and some people may prefer their kit to cover more of the wall.

Another method is to buy actual wainscot panels. From there, you'd cut them to fit and add any additional trim work that you'd need. A positive of this is that it won't be too difficult to find panels that work in many different budgets. Unfortunately, if you don't have a knack for this sort of thing, there's a chance that it will be a little out of your skillset - provided you were tackling this on your own. See more wainscot ideas here.

Wainscot Paneling

wainscot paneling Of wainscot paneling options, there are three that are worth mentioning. The first is raised panel wainscoting. This type - popular in England through the Georgian and Stuart periods - has been considered a breeze to compose. In this particular style the panels are slightly pushed out from the wall, coming in front of the rails and styles. They're generally identified by its bevelled edge. In most opinions, the raised panel wainscoting is considered to be the most formal style of wainscot.

There's also flat panel - also known as recessed panel wainscot - which was first developed in the 19th century. This is a North American style, which is defined by the fact that they are placed deeper than the stiles and rails. This is why it's called flat or recessed panel. Also, in this style, one will notice that there isn't any moulding used.

The third type is known as beadboard wainscot. It's not nearly as popular as the other types, but it's still one used in some settings, albeit pretty rare. It's identified by vertical beaded lines, with styles and rails that are pretty inconspicuous and narrow. These days if you find this type of wainscot, it's generally used to create a pretty casual mood.

Wainscot Bathroom

Bathroom wainscoting is a pretty popular thing to do. It's pleasing to the eye, and it's actually not too hard to install. It's possible for any of the paneling types to be applied to the bathroom, though there generally are some issues that one may come across when they're putting it in.

For one thing, a person wants to make sure that the panels are aligned at the top of the wall, since most bathroom floors aren't perfectly level. Also, baseboards generally cover up a multitude of sins. In addition to that, it's a good idea to give it a good paint job and install a vent to ensure that condensation isn't a problem. Other than that, bathroom wainscoting isn't a bad idea.

Wainscot Kits

What's great about wainscot kits is that you'll be able to find them essentially everywhere. For example, you can get all of your wainscoting at Home Depot. The same thing can be said about Lowe's, another leading provider of wainscot materials. Regardless of whether or not you're looking for beadboard, raised panel, or flat panel - you won't be hard-pressed to find something attractive, even if you happen to be one of the most discerning homeowners. But when it comes to home improvement, who isn't?

What's more is that there's a kit for essentially any kind of home, immaterial of your home's dimensions. While some people may find that they actually have to do some cut-to-fit, it's something that can be done if you have the expertise. Fortunately, many kits have detailed instructions that allow the novice to get it handled.

Wainscot Paneling - What's Right for Your Home?

When it comes to actually using wainscot, one of the toughest things to do is to find the perfect type for your home. There isn't exactly a right or wrong answer, but there are some things that you should consider when picking some out. For example, if you have a home that's considered "traditional", you may want to try raised panel wainscoting. For country-style homes, one may be interested in what beadboard panels could do for the home.

It can be hard to determine what you should do for your home, and there aren't any hard and fast rules when it comes to wainscot paneling. The best course of action is to do whatever you think looks good, and if you need some examples, you should be able to find a plethora of different examples on various home and family blogs. There are a multitude, and they're absolutely great choices for people who are currently on the hunt for some good wainscot paneling.

Wainscoting DIY

These days people are taking it among themselves to handle much of the home improvement, as opposed to hiring other people. A lot of this can be attributed to the myriad of home improvement blogs that have pretty detailed tutorials. In addition to that, companies are making some pretty good kits that have comprehensive instructions as well. It's a good time to be a homeowner who likes their own projects and wainscoting can possibly be one of those projects.

As with any do-it-yourself kind of project, it should only be done if you're fully confident in your abilities. This is something that will probably be pretty prominently displayed in your home and it's not really a smart idea for one to jump into something of this nature without relative experience. If you're someone who is looking to install their own wainscot, be sure to follow the directions carefully.

Don't be afraid to ask someone at your local home improvement store for tips and tricks for getting it done the right way. It's better to be safe than to be sorry, and if you've got ugly-looking wainscot, you'll assuredly be sorry. Of course, it's not a bad idea to call a professional home improvement specialist. It will cost you some money, but it's definitely better than a bad job. But, we're pretty confident that you can find enough about how to wainscot a room.


Wainscot - regardless of your personal preference - is something that can really be beneficial to the home. The various styles and options should be enough to keep any homeowner busy, and with it being able to be applied anywhere in the home, it's most definitely considered something that can really add value in multiple ways. Whether you're looking for a pre-made kit or actual paneling, we think that you'll really get something that you can legitimately enjoy.

Wainscot Ceiling

wainscot ceiling Wainscoting is an archetypal paneling used traditionally as a wall finishing or to create an elegant chair rail. However, wainscoting is also routinely used to create an intriguing and unique ceiling.

On vaulted or cathedral ceilings, use wainscoting to create the illusion of a lower ceiling making the room feel more welcoming. White wainscoting is the perfect material to create this effect without becoming overwhelming. However, with a large room or over-the-top house design, wainscoting in a darker shade is applicable.

Create a classic look by framing panels of wainscoting on a flat ceiling. This produces a beautiful ceiling design that adds style and ambiance to any room. A ceiling in a small room should have big squares of framed wainscoting while a large room looks best with many small panels. This effect creates visual interest on an otherwise boring ceiling. For a striking look, try painting the frames and wainscoting different colors.

Wainscoting is a beautiful finish for walls. However, many are unaware of its usefulness on ceilings. Using wainscoting on ceilings is an easy way to create a classic look in a modern home or add panache to an otherwise dull house. In a small home, it gives the homeowner a way to add style without taking up any valuable floor space. Any homeowner yearning for an attractive design feature for their home should give wainscoting a try.

Wainscot Solutions

Wainscoting solutions alternates standard materials to create custom wainscoting for various uses around the home. Gone are the days of wainscoting being used only on the walls of a dining room. Today, it is found in every room and in various aspects of design.

Use wainscoting as an easy way to update a bathroom by installing beadboard wainscoting on the lower half of the bathroom wall. For a more dramatic effect, take the wainscoting even higher and meet the ceiling. Wainscoting makes the perfect addition to any bathroom by creating texture and style. Moreover, almost any homeowner can install it themselves making it an easy weekend project.

Create storage, which is always in demand, using wainscoting. Fashion a shelving system out of wainscoting using a narrow planked beaded board as the backdrop. This is the perfect solution for those areas where traditionally built storage just does not work. For example, a narrow entryway of a house, foot of a large tub or under a window. Turn beaded board sideways for a unique finish to a smaller room. The horizontal lines trick the eye to see a larger space within the small area.

Another popular trend for wainscoting is forgoing the traditional white coloring for a pop of color. Wainscoting is easy to paint making it a simple way to add color to an otherwise dull room. Use a bright color on one wall for a bold effect or tone down the color to mute for an entire room. Run the wainscoting the length of the wall to bring this look to life.

The many options for wainscot usage are vast. Almost any project or idea is possible when implementing wainscoting. The above ideas are some off-the-wall projects that are worth trying.

Wainscot Molding

wainscot molding Moulding is essential when creating a wainscot design. For example, moulding is often used to frame pieces of wainscot on walls, ceilings or in stairwells. It adds the finishing touch to an already dynamic look.

Use moulding to create a headboard by installing wainscoting to the wall and surround the wainscot with moulding. This is an easy way to add style and pizzazz to a room that is lifeless. For an even bolder look, paint the wainscoting and moulding a vivid color.

For another interesting way to use moulding, create a tufted wall. Install moulding at chair rail height. Then, install foam between the baseboard and chair rail moulding. Cover the foam with decorative fabric inserting buttons to create a tufted look. This produces a classic motif perfect for the Victorian or Colonial-styled home.

Use moulding to hold interesting focal pieces. Install wainscoting over half the way up a wall, and top it with elegant moulding extended out into the room about an inch. This makes the perfect alcove for pictures, art or small items. This look is best used above a bed or in some other place where it is unlikely to interfere with people as they walk through the house. In other words, confine this project to above fireplaces, beds, or sinks for the best results.

Moulding is a vital tool in the correct usage of wainscot. Use moulding to complete or improve any wainscot project. Create a dynamic look with the perfect combination of wainscot and moulding.