Interior Obsessions – Wood Walls

Last week’s look at chandeliers on Interior Obsessions with FormFire Glassworks introduced a decorating item that has shifted out of the world of the mildly tacky into something cool and modern. This week we take a similar glimpse into the use of wood walls in the modern home.

This is not the thin, hollow-sounding paneling of the late 60s and early 70s, much of which has now been either ripped down or painted over. The intended warmth and materialistic qualities that were intended with that paneling has given way to a more authentic and tactile use of wood as a wall treatment. Whether it be flush horizontal tongue-in-groove boards or routed vertical pieces, left with a clear finish to show the wood, or painted dark, white, grey or a myriad of other colors, the wood wall has made a resurgence as a focal point in interior design. Wood can be used as an overall finish for a more rustic or cottage look, or be placed on a single wall for a modern edge. But some designers are taking the wood wall even further, giving a nod back to the original log cabin with split wood placed to show end grain, as slats to form a substantial yet transparent surface, or even combined with painted boards to create a surface pattern. The possibilities are only limited by your imagination.

(above) White HorizontalGrey Vertical

Flush Horizontal T+GRouted Vertical Panel

End-Grain Logs

Wood Slats, Color and Wood Mix

12 comments | Click here to reply

I dunno… I don’t think enough time has passed for wood panelling of any sort to be ok again (not quite yet). I saw this done recently as a restaurant ceiling & wondered why they’d bothered. Maybe just a case of wrong place, wrong time — I trust you that it can work!


Interesting point of view Lauren. Honestly, I am not usually a fan of paneling either. But I think there is a way it can be done that really does feel fresh and stylish. Sometimes it can really bring extra depth and unexpected texture to a space. And I thought Amy’s examples were spot on. I’d love to debate this topic if you or anyone else has any thoughts on the subject. 🙂


Well actually I really like the very first picture… I wouldn’t go for natural coloured wood panelling, but I love it when it’s painted white, as it reminds me of a swedish sort of beach house… in summer. Which is good.

I mean, isn’t this gorgeous?!

pilli pilli

pilli pilli

I love wood paneling painted white! It’s charming. Nice way to add texture to a wall too.

Jennifer Squires Ross

I really love …most of them. I think it’s modern and sleek-my fav. would have to be the kitchen. It adds warmth if you do it right I think. I really don’t like the black at all-the light wood with black is a little tacky. 🙂


Great link Pilli. I agree with you and Jennifer- when paneling feels light and bright it can really add character. And I see what you are saying Outodry. Although, I still kind of like it. Maybe I am a little bit tacky. Hmm…


Take a look at the sixth image down in this post:
Love it!

Jennifer Squires Ross

My favourites: White Horizontal, Grey Vertical and the one from the last picture (kitchen). Amazing!


Oh wow Jennifer. Thanks for the link. I love the variation of widths in the wood there. Kind of hard to see in such a small image, but its lovely!


I love wood! In any form, really. The grey vertical wood wall is just begging for me to live with it. I love it when it’s painted as a wash, so that you can still see the grain underneath. Beautiful post, Brittni!

Brittany Broas

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