20 Wood Wall Paneling Makeover IdeasIf your wooden wall panels are screaming for updates, you have knocked the right door!

Maybe those are the reminiscent of the old days and lacking warmth. Don’t panic! There is no need to replace them. You can quickly transform them into something inspiring and attractive.

Here are 15 such wood wall paneling makeover ideas to help you out. Read on to know the details!

1. Clean them up

Maybe you have purchased a house that has 50 years old wood paneling. The panel is sound but looks dull and dirty. Wondering how to improve that? There is no need to tear down the whole thing and replace that.

Only cleaning can make this look bright, shining, and new again if you follow these steps. Do not use a dishwasher or a detergent but use a wood cleaning soap instead. Mix the soap in a bucket of warm water and start cleaning the wooden panel in circular motions. You may wear gloves if you like.

Once you finish cleaning the walls, wash it for the second time. This will help to remove residues built up over the years. But do not keep the panels wet for a long time. Wipe the wooden panels with a soft towel. This will give a regenerated to look to the age-old panels.

2. Embrace with 3d decorative wall panels

Planning is the key to combining the wood wall panels with architectural wall panels. These are made from varieties of core materials like acrylic, gypsum, MDF, metal, glass, resin, etc. Get one that suits best without overdoing the decoration.

Sounds of traffic, construction site, and noisy neighbors could be a serious issue in the homes and offices. Use of soundproof interior wall panels can deliver you a premier design and acoustic solution. As these contain high-quality acoustic fiber and felt, they provide a robust noise-dampening solution.

These designer acoustic wall panels are available in a wide range of colors. When you combine them with the dated wood wall panels, they make a subtle and robust décor statement. Being rich in features, they also deliver a tactile experience.

Using these designer interior wall panels puts you in a win-win situation. These are available in geometric forms and need no demolition or surface treatment. You can easily mount them on the existing wall panels to enrich the decoration. Moreover, they do not cost much, and their cleaning is also easy.

3. Refinish for a rustic look

The look of weathered woods adds a rustic charm to the interior. Sand the old wood panel with sandpaper. Next, scrub the boards with a mixture of apple cider vinegar and black tea. Baking soda solution also produces excellent results.

You may also attack the wooden panel with a hammer or metallic chain to create a divot. Creating an irregular pattern by hitting with a sack filled with nails is also a good idea. Infusing the look of insect damage also helps. Use an awl to create irregular holes in the wooden panel.

These will make the panel look like reclaimed wood. It will also open up the fibers and knots in the wooden panels for a great rustic appearance.

4. Whitewash the panels

Whitewashing wood panels let them have a new life. It is very easy to do. Clean the surface with dish detergents in water. Sand it lightly and apply a thin coat of latex primer. Then apply several coats of white latex paint. This will deliver a whitewashed look.

5. Paint them up

Painting the wood wall panels is a great way to update them. If there are gaps and grooves, fill them up with caulk. Paint the wall panels with a dark color. This will make them look like a complete wall. You can also paint them in contrasting colors to create attractive designs.

Even if the wood panels in your bedroom have a gloomy appearance, do not leave it as a fad. Paint a beautiful headboard in addition to painting the other parts of the room. This will make your bedroom look stylish and modern.

For your kid’s room, you may paint different part of the wooden panel between the grooves with different colors. Make the slots black with black paint. This will remind the playful design of a circus tent.

6. Clad with wallpapers

Installing wallpapers on the wooden walls is a simple and effective way to upgrade them. Coming in varieties of designs and colors, they are great to improve the walls. Use thick and more patterned wallpapers. They will be able to hide the flaws that lay underneath.

Sand the wooden panel before you install the wallpaper on it. If there are large cracks, fill them up with sealing compound before fixing the wallpaper. This will upgrade the décor to the next level.

7. Make it look like wainscoting

Wainscoting makes a room elegant with its special touch. You can apply this for a makeover of wooden wall panels.

Add a separating rail on the wooden panel at around 1/3rd of the height. Now paint this part with opaque white paint and cover the upper 2/3rd with wallpaper. This will give the interior a classic wainscoting look without spending anything for that.

8. Impart a diagonal look

The usual form of wood panels is either horizontal or vertical. When the boards are old, they make the interior dull and drab. So creating a different design is necessary for giving it a facelift.

It is not essential to replace the entire panel for this. Replace a part of the panel with diagonal paneling. This will add depth and drama to the wall and create a beautiful focal point.

9. Create geometric patterns

Creating geometric patterns on the wooden panels also helps to upgrade them. This is very easy to do. You can use paint to create abstract geometric patterns on the walls. Using colored tapes is also a great way of improving the wall panels.

10. Stencil the wooden panels

Stenciling the wood panels is also an effective and affordable to way to upgrade the wall panels. This is great to deliver a craved feeling on the flat wooden panels.

Plenty of designer stencils are available in the market. Get a few of them and mark them on the panels. Use acrylic paints to stencil the walls. This last long and deliver a high relief and raised pattern. Combining these with geometric patterns makes the interior creative and inspiring.


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11. Upgrade with board and batten

Form a board and batten framework on the existing wooden wall panels. You may use wooden strips and planks for this. Pinewood strips are great for this. Plenty of imitation board and batten designs on ply boards are also available. Mount these on the wooden panels.

You may paint them or leave them as such depending on whatever aligns best with your décor theme. It will upgrade the old panel aplomb to the next level.

12. Turn into regular walls

Having a home with wood paneling all over could be overwhelming and outdated. You may not like to replace them for cost but want to give it a fresh look. Converting the wooden panels into a regular wall can help you out.

Apply plaster on the wood wall panels. Also, seal all cracks and gaps in the wall panels with caulking compound. Buff the wall with sandpaper when it is dry. Now coat the wall panels with primer and apply a second coat of plaster. This will deliver a smooth finish with a glossy sheen and look like a regular wall after painting.

13. Cover with art

Sometimes it is better to do nothing with the wall panels. Like a magician, you can cover them up with a piece of art. Create a gallery wall. You may use paintings, family photos, or ornate mirrors for this. They will draw the attraction away from the walls and impart a nice feeling.

Adorn the old wooden panel with artificial roses. They will deliver a nice romantic vibe to the bedroom. Hanging a tapestry that fits the season is also a good idea. Or can create a colorful tattoo on the wall panels. They will jazz up the décor to the next level.

14. Disguise with shelves

No one will pay attention to the walls if there is something more attractive. Place a bookshelf and fill it up with books. This will act as a creative backdrop and improve the décor. You can also build beautiful floating shelves and display collectibles on them. This will also help to induce an improved look.

15. Dress up with marble

Combing a part of the wooden panel with marble gives it a luxurious touch. Replace a part of the panel with marbles. This will make the place a center of attraction and ultimately elevate the walls and the interior. You can also use faux agate for this. With its incredible structure, it will create an outstanding wall.


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16. Style up with pennies

Pennies are a unique decorative element for homes. You can use them anywhere from accenting walls to create backsplashes. They can make the interior brighter with their majestic copper metallic gloss and shine. Fix pennies on the wooden panels with glue to create different designs. They will give a nice shot up making the place wow with their original and gorgeous designs.

17. Fill the joints with compound

If your old wooden panel has ugly joints, you can improve it by filling them with a compound. Plenty of joint filling compounds are available. While black give the best contrast, you may use other colors as well.

Wash the panel with soap first. This will take off the grime. Then sand the grooves light with fine-grit sandpaper and clean the residue with a soft cloth. Apply the joint compound and again smooth it using sandpaper. This will give a new look to your old wooden panel.

Alternatively, you may also use colored ropes of the same size as the grooves. This will make your old wooden panel interesting.

18. Make it a work of art with a trellis structure

If you are ready to give a cool facelift to the old dated panels, you may think of using a trellis. There is no need to replace and remove the wooden panels. Trellis is very easy to build. Create a trellis structure on the existing panel with redwood planks.

You can also use plastic other than wood. This is light and comes in varying thickness. Fix them on the wall to form the structure. Their size can be as big as you want to. This will give the interior a beautiful look and relieve you of a difficult makeover that involves high cost.

19. Apply a coat of varnish

Do not panic, if your home has wooden panels that have seen better days. You can restore them and give a new lease of life. First, clean with wood cleaning soap and wipe them up dry with a soft towel. Now sand it out and remove the dust with a soft brush.

Now wipe the panels again with mineral turpentine to remove the last traces of dust and residues. Apply a coat of varnish when the panels are dry. You may also add a second coat if necessary.

20. Use wall decals

Wall decals play a vital role when it comes to upgrading an old wooden panel. Unlike coving the entire wall with wallpapers, you may consider them using sparingly to create attractive designs.

These are available in small, medium, large sizes and plenty of designs and colors. Use one that gives a perfect look to your age-old wooden panel. Teaming these with other wall arts can make the room awesome.


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