Kitchen Remodel wainscoting in red kitchen. Vertical panels

Wainscoting 101

Reflect with us on a project we’ve done for a previous client. The high ceilings, big windows, and wainscoting work helps elevate your space to the next level!

What is Wainscoting?

Wainscot is a term originally used to describe high-quality riven oak boards. Riven wood means the lumber is created by splitting the wood along the grain, instead of using a saw or other contemporary milling method. Usage dates back to the 1300s Dutch who placed the panels along the lower portions of walls as protection from scuffs and damage. It was also used for extra insulation against harsh weather. This was before modern luxuries like insulation existed!

Nowadays we use the term, wainscot, to describe the decorative wall accents or paneling on interior walls. Modern wainscoting is made from a variety of materials, and while it no longer serves the same insulation purposes, it still can safeguard against modern life’s “uh-oh” moments. Adding wainscoting to your walls also provides extra depth and layers to your home’s design.

Design and Style Suggestions

There are 5 main types of wainscoting to consider: raised panel, flat panel, beadboard, overlay, and board and batten. Each is uniquely structured and will work well with many different types of style preferences. Raised panel means the center panel has a beveled edge and is flush with the molding. Simply enough, flat panel means that the molding is placed on top of the center panel. Beadboard is made from panels of skinny vertical boards that are connected by tongue and grove. Overlay involves flat panels built on top of each other giving the illusion of raised panels. Board and batten, also known as shaker, places strips or boards directly onto the sheetrock to create a design.

Technically speaking wainscot height shouldn’t be more than two-thirds the height of your wall. Of course, this is just a suggestion as each design situation is unique. Play around with visual aids before making a decision and see what works best for your space. It’s not unusual to see wainscoting run all the way to the ceiling in modern designs.

Solid oak or wood is no longer the only option for wainscoting, although it is the classic choice for elegance and durability. Materials such as MDF, plastic, and plywood work well for decorative applications and are a cost-effective alternative.

Where should it go? Wainscoting works well in many rooms! Favorite spaces for designers are bathrooms, hallways, mudrooms, and dining rooms. Painting the wainscoting and wall the same color is a neat way to add texture to a room. Whatever style or type of material, wainscoting will bring a touch of class, and elegance to your space.

Thinking of Summer helps with Winter. But don’t overlook SPRING


It’s cold, it won’t stop snowing and everyone is just a tad irritable. If you weren’t able to make a snow-bird trip to some place warm and relaxing this winter, spring can’t come soon enough. Even if you were fortunate to get away somewhere warm and sunny, you’re back in the cold and probably can’t wait for spring to come either.

Some people will sit behind their desk and daydream about that perfect BBQ party in 80 degree and sunny weather realizing that there is work that needs be done before that dream comes true. Then your boss walks into your office, daydream over!

Spring is a great time to prioritize some of your home’s remodeling needs and get it ready for the summer months. Don’t wait until summer to realize you waited too long.

Creative Contracting Inc. looks forward to the opportunity in helping you complete these projects.

Reasons to remodel in the Spring:

1. OPEN THE WINDOWS (for two reasons): The first, dust is inevitable. Setting fans up in the open windows gives a place for the dust to go. The second, it can give you a place to go. Living through a renovation can be tough. Having the ability to go outside and escape can be a treat.

2. ENJOY THE SUMMER MONTHS: Too often people wait too long to start their projects and they are not done by the time they had hoped. It’s opposite of the ‘Better Late Than Never’ mentality. Get the project done before summer is here so you can show it off and enjoy the finished product.

3. TAX RETURNS: This topic probably doesn’t need an explanation, but it is a legitimate reason for a large number of spring remodeling projects.

Popular projects completed in the Spring:

1. Kitchens: Hosting those summer parties means prepping and having friends and families over. You deserve a new and beautiful kitchen that you can be proud of to get everything ready for the party and show off.


2. Porches and Sunrooms: Enjoying the outside and not fighting the bugs or rain. Seems like a win, win to me.



Indoor Gardening.

Winter is a good time to focus a little time and energy on indoor gardening. As someone, who lacks the ability to keep houseplants flourishing – I look for low maintenance ideas. Terrariums have become my new winter garden of choice. I can decorate them, they need little maintenance and they’re a great table top accessory. The choice of containers for small plantings is endless and garden stores carry a wide variety of tiny artful ways to enhance and personalize garden scapes. For the best results, create a base for your terrarium with small stones layered with a thin layer of charcoal to help keep the soil fresh. Add some good quality potting soil and then start planting! Many garden stores are carrying miniature plants perfect for terrariums. Plants can grow quickly and overpower the container – so I tend to replant seasonally or use slow growing plants and moss. I replace flowering plants when they are finished flowering.

This is a picture of my fall terrarium.

Terrariums come in a wide variety of styles – express your creativity and add a little greenery to this dreary time of year! I know I’m looking forward to updating my terrarium with some early springtime bulbs.