You’ve heard of shiplap, of course, but have you seen skinnylap? Today I’ll share how we created a skinny lap fireplace surround for our new wall in the living room!
The other day I shared that we’ve finally completed our big living room built-ins project and today I wanted to focus a little more closely on one little section of that project, because I think it’s neat. 🙂 When it came time to plan our fireplace surround, back at the beginning of the year, I wasn’t exactly sure what would be an appropriate choice and what would work in our old house. I felt like there was already quite a bit going on in the room with the Airstone accent wall that we have on the opposing side of the space and I didn’t want whatever I added to mess with that too much. I wanted something simple, but I didn’t just want to have a plain white board. I wanted something with a little bit of pattern and texture, but not too much. I wondered if we could figure out a way to make skinnylap work as a surround. It turns out that we could.
What is Skinnylap?
Skinnylap is basically just the skinnier version of the basic shiplap that you know and love. It’s made up of little strips of wood, usually about 1.5-2″ wide, running horizontally across a wall and stacked on top of each other. The look is classic and in my opinion, it gives a bit more of a historical feel to a room compared to the regular shiplap we’re all so used to seeing. That might just because we see it all the time though. 🙂
Our Skinnylap Fireplace Surround
We got a little creative for our skinnylap fireplace surround and it’s not constructed exactly in the way that I described above. It may look like lots of teeny tiny strips of wood, but I’ll let you in on the secret: It’s actually just one big piece! 🙂
We cut a piece of MDF to fit in the opening for the fireplace surround, routed out the lines between each “strip” of skinnylap, then lightly spraypainted the whole thing to avoid having any paint drip down into the spaces between each strip.
We then cut out a hole for the fireplace to fit into and secured it in place.
Bam. Instant, perfectly-straight skinny lap fireplace surround. 🙂
Don’t mind the dust! Harvest season just finished up and there’s so much dust in the air! I thought I got it all, but I guess not. Ha!
This technique obviously wouldn’t work if you have a whole wall that you want to install skinnylap on, but for smaller nooks, this little trick works perfectly.
What do you think of this new skinnylap look? Do you prefer it over the more popular basic shiplap?
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Courtenay Hartford is the author of creeklinehouse.com, a blog based on her adventures renovating a 120-year-old farmhouse in rural Ontario, Canada. On her blog, Courtenay shares interior design tips based on her own farmhouse and her work as founder and stylist of the interior photography firm Art & Spaces. She also writes about her farmhouse garden, plant-based recipes, family travel, and homekeeping best practices. Courtenay is the author of the book The Cleaning Ninja and has been featured in numerous magazines including Country Sampler Farmhouse Style, Better Homes and Gardens, Parents Magazine, Real Simple, and Our Homes.