Handcrafted Home

How to Pickle Your Shiplap | A Warm + Rustic Wall Application

Pickling your shiplap refers to the process of treating wooden shiplap boards with diluted paint or a stain solution to achieve a weathered, aged appearance.

picked shiplap tutorial

Creating Charm with Shiplap

Shiplap has emerged as a timeless favorite in home décor, revered for its rustic elegance and versatility. But maybe it’s time for a shiplap update! For those seeking to add a touch of weathered allure to their interiors, pickled shiplap offers a unique solution. Let’s dive into the art of pickling shiplap, uncovering the secrets to achieving that coveted distressed look while preserving the inherent beauty of the wood.

After we decided to shiplap an accent wall in our bedroom. I let it sit for a few weeks. It was just simple raw pine wood planks, but I wanted to imagine what it could become for a bit before I moved forward. I could paint it white like we just did in our kid’s room, but why not try something more exciting than the simple white shiplap?

bedroom wall with pickled shiplap

Selecting the Perfect Shiplap: Tips for Choosing the Right Material

  1. Opt for Quality Wood: Choose high-quality shiplap boards made from durable wood species like pine, cedar, or poplar, as they offer better resistance to moisture and warping.

  1. Consider Board Width and Thickness: Determine the desired width and thickness of the shiplap boards based on your aesthetic preferences and the dimensions of your space. Thicker boards tend to offer a more substantial look, while narrower boards create a refined, contemporary feel. To make our shiplap as cost-effective as possible, I will purchase a 4×8 sheet of 1/4″ underlayment and rip it down into 5.5″-6″ boards.
shiplap with pickled wall application

Preparing the Surface: Essential Steps for Successful Pickling

  1. Clean and Sand the Shiplap: Begin by thoroughly cleaning the shiplap boards to remove any dust, dirt, or debris. Then, lightly sand the surface to smooth out imperfections and promote better paint adhesion. I go after all of my pieces with my handy palm sander out in the garage, before I bring it into the house.

  1. Apply a Wood Conditioner: To ensure even absorption of the pickling solution, apply a wood conditioner to the shiplap boards. This helps to seal the wood and prevent blotchiness or uneven staining. I love this Minwax Pre-Stain Wood Conditioner! It keeps your wood from completely absorbing at a high saturation level and it keeps everything more evenly-colored. I use it for many of my projects!

grey pickled walls

The Pickling Process: Step-by-Step Instructions for Achieving Distressed Perfection

  1. Prepare the Pickling Solution: Mix equal parts of white latex paint or stain with water to create a diluted pickling solution. Adjust the ratio based on the desired intensity of the whitewash effect. I selected a color that matched our existing walls, then went a shade darker. I chose Gaunlet Gray from Sherwin Williams for our pickled shiplap wall.

  1. Apply the Pickling Solution: Using a brush or rag, generously apply the pickling solution to the surface of the shiplap boards, working in small sections. Allow the solution to penetrate the wood for a few minutes before wiping off any excess with a clean cloth. Feel free to play with this to decide how much of the wood grain you want to come through.

Questions People are asking about Pickled Shiplap

Can I Pickle Shiplap That Has Already Been Stained or Painted?

Yes, you can pickle previously finished shiplap, but it’s essential to sand the surface thoroughly to remove the existing finish and allow the pickling solution to penetrate the wood effectively.

How Do I Maintain Pickled Shiplap?

Pickled shiplap requires minimal maintenance. Simply dusting regularly with a soft cloth or vacuum brush attachment to remove surface dirt and debris. Avoid using harsh cleaners or abrasive materials that could damage the finish.

Can I Customize the Color of the Pickling Solution?

Absolutely! This is the best part of all! Experiment with different paint colors and dilution ratios to achieve a custom look that complements your décor style. Consider adding tinted or colored stains for a unique twist on the traditional pickled finish.

how to pickle shiplap

Embracing the Timeless Charm of Pickled Shiplap

With its understated elegance and timeless appeal, pickled shiplap offers a captivating way to add depth and character to any interior space. I hope you enjoyed these tips and techniques, so you too, can master the art of pickling shiplap and transform your home into a haven of rustic charm and contemporary style.

Pin this for later!

Other Wall Treatment Tutorials:

How to Create a Faux Stone Wall

Wallpapering for Beginners

My Favorite Roman Clay Recipe

Laundry Room Transformation

hearty sol signature

Affiliate Disclosure & Content Disclaimer

This post may contain affiliate links from a paid sponsor, Amazon or other program. When you use these links to make a purchase I earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. This allows me to continue creating the content that you love. The content in this article is created for information only and based on my research and/or opinion. 

Emily T.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


it's hip to be square!