Tongue and groove wall panels have become more and more prevalent on the interior design scene. And there’s one very good reason why: they’re freakin’ phenomenal.
When I filmed Changing Rooms (coming soon to Channel 10 – woohoo), I used tongue and groove wall panels in one of the rooms. That’s probably about as much behind-the-scenes goss from the show I’m allowed to tell you. But I wanted you to know that I love these panels because I’ve actually used them. And let me tell you, the results were amazing!
What I found most exciting about these panels is how much they transform a space. What was a flat room suddenly becomes a thousand times more interesting because there’s texture on the walls. The lines – be them horizontal or vertical – lead the eye in a particular direction. So you can make a narrow room feel wider by fixing them horizontally. Or you can make a room with a low ceiling feel taller by running them vertically.
On the show, I ran mine horizontally across a long wall in a living and dining room. It really unified the spaces and made the open plan living area feel massive. I won’t tell you what colour I painted them, but it was definitely daring 😉
Tongue and Groove Panels, or VJ Panels?
Tongue and groove panels are often referred to as VJ panels. The VJ stands for ‘vertical join’, which makes sense considering they are, for the most part, fixed vertically on the wall.
They’re essentially the same thing. VJ panelling was the more popular term because older-style homes featured a lot of it. Not only on walls, mind you, but right up onto the ceiling too. The bedrooms above are a great example of how you can add interest to a space simply by having vertical timber panels running up the wall.
You’ll also notice the two rooms have gone a bit colourful. White panels are very popular in bohemian or coastal homes. But don’t feel you have to go for white paint all the time. I love the room directly above because the bold colour makes the space feel quite rich, cosy and inviting. You just wouldn’t get the same effect with a white wall.
All of the images in this post I found via Pinterest. Such a good resource for ideas like this. Keep scrolling as we take a look at tongue and groove wall panels applied to other spaces.
Running Tongue and Groove Panels Horizontally
As I already mentioned up to, I ran tongue and groove panels horizontally when I applied mine on Changing Rooms. It’s not the preferred direction but I love them like this. It carries the eye around the room, and how good do they look when painted in a dark colour like black or charcoal? I love the room above with its rich wall, weathered timber and plush grey sofa. What a stunner.
It’s also worth noting that you can get tongue and groove wall panels in different sizes. Some are thinner, others thicker. It’s also worth taking some time to consider which is right for you. The thinner the plank, the more lines you’ll have featured on the wall, and so the busier the surface will feel – especially a smaller room. In a large space, it can actually be a wise idea to cover all the walls in tongue and groove. It feels more intentional.
Below you’ll see the panels travel from wall to ceiling and I’ve gotta say, I’m super impressed. What a way to make a statement. The black beams are also giving me life! I would very much like to live here.
Let’s not Forget Panels for Wet Areas
There’s no reason why tongue and groove panels have to be sent to the bedroom or living room. Take a look at the three images above and I’m sure you’ll agree they’re pretty phenomenal in wet areas like bathrooms.
I’ve also seen the panels put in laundries as well and they look sublime. The two images directly above (and the hero image in this post) I know are from Cedar and Suede, and I love that they’ve decided to paint the panels in a soft grey. Again, so much better than a stark white wall. And if you want more inspo on moving away from light walls and going over to the dark side, check this post out next.
Oh, and if you want to buy tongue and groove panels, check out Easycraft – they’re awesome products and Bunnings stocks them. Super easy to find!
I’d love to know if you’re going to apply these to your walls. Drop me a comment below and let me know. I want to apply them in my own living room. Just have to get my partner over the line, so help me convince him!