Wainscot is wall covering that extends from the floor to roughly the middle of the walls. It's often wood beadboard, and it's usually white.
But why white? White wainscot does convey the homey, retro look of a summer cottage. Yet you can paint wainscot an endless array of colors other than white.
In a video, design expert Linda Castle describes a wainscot project where she "did a creamy colored paint and over that paint...did a glaze with a beautiful green color above" (pictured here).
ResourcesLuckily, wainscot is easily available and inexpensive. It's as close as your local lumberyard or home improvement store.
Wainscot can be found in two main forms:
- Tongue-and-groove plywood beadboard paneling in 4'x8' sizes requiring cutting and priming.
- MDF panels 32" to 48" high that are made just for wainscot. These panels are tongue-and-groove and are primed for paint.