Living room paneling ideas are beautiful decorative features in the home that work well in both traditional and contemporary interiors, adding lasting character and glamour to your space.
Living room paneling can add depth and luxurious texture and can be a practical addition to walls for added durability, insulation and protection. Paneling ideas for walls are the perfect addition to living room decor, as the room needs to reflect your personal style as well as being durable and timeless, and paneling can provide everything effortlessly.
From modern panel paint ideas on panels of all shapes and sizes, to traditional Shaker panel designs, your living room paneling ideas can be as subtle as they are bold.
living room paneling ideas
A function once associated with traditional properties, living room siding has become more than just a method of insulation.
Living room panels are a popular creative decorating technique for wall decor that can change the look of a space. With a range of traditional and contemporary styles to choose from, there is a choice to suit all home styles.
Whether you’re updating your existing living room paneling with new paint, or building your own new ones, we’ve collected a collection of inspiring tips and ideas to help you get the most out of your living room space with paneling.
1. Use square paneling for a neat geometric look
Square paneling, also known as Jacobean style paneling, creates a uniform, symmetrical pattern through elegant square arrangements.
The neat grid effect provides a great platform for living room paint ideas and creates an inviting, textured style that works in both small and large spaces.
2. Frame your work
For ideas on how to display artwork, living room wall panels provide the perfect platform to enhance your artwork.
Whether you’re creating custom paneling for selected artwork or using existing panel shapes in an interior space to enhance your gallery wall ideas, it can beautifully frame a painting or photo, creating an addition of depth and texture element.
Framing your artwork this way is also a great option for stair paneling ideas, as stairs often provide the perfect platform for gallery walls.
3. Keep it minimal
For a more contemporary look, opt for a sleek and minimalist living room paneling effect.
Thin horizontal wood panels add an understated element of texture in this living room painted in black and blue No.95 by Farrow & Ball.
Keeping it minimal with paneling is also a great way to subtly divide your living room space. Here, panels create a subtle separation between the lower seating area and the upper wall space through artwork and lighting.
4. Paint the living room paneling a neutral color
For a timeless and sophisticated look, painting your living room paneling in a neutral hue will ensure the design will stand the test of time.
In this bright living room, the walls and panels are painted in a soft shade of off-white, adding an accent to the panelling design compared to the bright white ceiling.
The overall effect provides a versatile backdrop that can grow with the living room space for years to come, perfect for neutral living room ideas.
5. Create a Monochromatic Look
For an impactful look, incorporating living room paneling into a striking monochrome design can be a great way to add a modern twist to a traditional feature.
The blue paint used in this living room creates a bold, modern design that celebrates color and texture. The paneling here both stands out and blends in with the monochromatic color scheme, and the dark blue creates a sophisticated and eye-catching vibe, perfect for blue living room ideas.
6. Use a unique fabric panel
Traditional wood panels are known to add texture and depth to a space, but if you want to go a step further, why not create a unique paneling design, upholstered in a soft fabric?
Tactile and attractive, fabric panels are a great choice for room decorating ideas, adding an enhanced element of texture and comfort to your living room space. Using fabric paneling also provides a great platform for mixing patterns and prints in the interior, creating a vibrant space full of color and character.
Whether you decide to panel the entire living room space or design a striking feature panel in Neptune at the back of the living room, fabric panels can create a unique design touch in your home.
7. Coordinate with your wallpaper
Coordinating your living space paneling with wallpaper is an easy trick that promises to create a cohesive, stylish scheme and is a great way to enhance your wallpaper ideas.
For inspiration, use the color wheel to help you choose complementary or accent colors to match your chosen wallpaper design.
8. Use exposed wood paneling for a rustic effect
A popular style of home paneling, especially the idea of bathroom paneling, slats create a clean, classic look and can be installed both vertically and horizontally.
In this living room designed by KJM Interiors, rustic wood panels create a relaxed vibe, adding natural texture and warmth to the neutral living space. The horizontal placement of the paneling also expands the size of the room, giving the illusion of a wider space – and a handy decorative trick for the ceiling paneling idea.
9. Use bold colors
Painting panels with paint ideas and bold shades is an easy way to add color and character to your living room space.
According to Helen Shaw, UK Director at Benjamin Moore, “Choosing the right colour to decorate the panelling is key; if you prefer a subtle yet elegant aesthetic, consider a colour scheme by matching the colour of the walls to the trim of the panels, or for a more Impactful Finishes Choose a complementary or feature color to catch the eye’.
In this living room, bright green paneling enhances the beautiful patterned wallpaper and provides a dynamic contrast to the red striped rug. Adding a modern twist to a traditional wood design, boldly painting a living room paneling idea can create a unique, vibrant effect—a trick that also works for modern hallway paneling ideas.
10. Opt for large panels for drama
In this living room, large grey panels complement the scale of the artwork, amplifying the feel of the space and creating an element of extra height and grandeur.
Choosing the correct shape and size of panels to match the proportions of the living room will help create a balanced scheme that makes the most of the space.
How do you panel the living room?
Many living rooms feature traditional paneling that can simply be updated and painted to coordinate with the scheme of your choice.
However, if you want to add paneling to your living room, there are some tips to keep in mind beforehand.
According to Helen Shaw, UK Director at Benjamin Moore, “Careful planning is essential so you can ensure the connection is working and you have taken into account practical considerations such as how it will relate to plug sockets, fireplaces and doors.
“If you’re updating your space and adding paneling, be sure to consider the type of paint you’re using. Surfaces need to be dust-free and well-prepared and primed to ensure the final finish is environmentally friendly.
Choosing where you want the paneling and measuring your living room is the best place to start, and then you can move on to consider factors like paneling style, materials, paint choices, and colors to create the perfect paneling design for your space.
Will paneling make the living room look smaller?
Using paneling in a larger living room is a great way to make a space feel more inviting and cozy, however, not all styles of paneling will make a room appear smaller.
Using large vertical panels can add the illusion of height to a space, and horizontal panels make the room feel wider.
There are many styles and shapes of panelling to choose from, with a variety of options to suit large or small living room spaces.