Shiplap or reclaimed barn wood can add texture and personality to almost any interior space. But the time and expense of wood paneling cause many of us to settle for plain old drywall.
You shouldn’t have to make sacrifices when it comes to turning your house into a home. And, with so many high-quality wallpapers available, there’s no need to stare at naked walls any longer!
From traditional paper to textured vinyl, you’ll find our picks for the best wallpaper that looks like barn wood below!
Real Barn Wood Vs Wallpaper: Which Is Right for You?
There are several ways to recreate the look of authentic wood paneling. Two of the most popular are wood overlays and wallpaper.
A wood overlay is created by installing very thin wooden planks to the drywall.
On the surface, a real wood overlay looks exactly like a wall made completely of shiplap or reclaimed barn wood.
However, this project requires a decent amount of labor and a number of materials. And removing the overlay in the future will probably require refinishing the drywall underneath.
Specialty wallpaper can also be used to mimic the look of barn wood.
This method is often more affordable and less labor-intensive than installing an overlay (though it’s important to note that some wallpapers are easier to install than others).
It’s also much less likely to permanently damage the supporting wall at removal. In terms of overall appearance, it’s hard to beat a real wood overlay.
But you may be surprised by the quality of wallpaper available, including those that are embossed to look and feel like authentic barn wood.
How to Choose the Best Barn Wood Wallpaper
Smooth Vs. Textured
If all you care about is the general look of barn wood, then smooth wallpaper may suffice.
Textured wallpaper is the only way to mimic the multi-dimensional appearance of real wood.
On the other hand, textured wallpaper can be harder to keep clean than a smooth surface. It could also make it more difficult to pattern match the wallpaper during application.
Most wallpaper that looks like barn wood can be grouped into one of three categories: Unpasted, pre-pasted, and peel-and-stick.
With unpasted wallpaper, a separate paste is needed to adhere the product to the wall. This process can be messy and time-consuming.
Pre-pasted wallpaper already has an adhesive applied to the back. All you need to do is remove the backing layer and stick the wallpaper to your wall.
Peel-and-stick wallpaper is a type of pre-pasted wallpaper that can easily be removed or repositioned. This is a less permanent option for renters or anyone else looking for a temporary design solution.
Unless you’re covering a very small accent wall, you’ll want to pay close attention to the type of pattern matching offered by your chosen wallpaper!
Pattern matching refers to the way the printed pattern — in this case, barn wood planks — lines up between one sheet of wallpaper and another.
The 5 Best Wallpapers That Look Like Barn Wood
If you gravitate toward the bright and airy aesthetic of whitewashed barn wood, this wallpaper will be right up your alley!
While this is a traditional, non-textured wallpaper, it looks surprisingly realistic once applied to the wall. Those not in the know will think it’s real barn wood until they actually reach out and touch it!
The free match pattern makes it relatively easy to apply over a small area or throughout an entire room. This barn wood-inspired wallpaper can be applied vertically or horizontally, though the former is notably easier.
Keep in mind that this wallpaper comes unpasted. You’ll need to purchase an adhesive and the necessary tools separately before installing.
Each roll measures 20.5 inches wide and 33 feet long.
This wallpaper boasts a unique and stylish take on the classic barn wood aesthetic. It’s the perfect choice for any space that blends rustic and modern design.
The peel-and-stick backing can’t be beaten in terms of convenience. Installing this wallpaper is also much less messy than applying unpasted paper!
Since this barn wood wallpaper features overwhelmingly cool-toned colors, it won’t suit all spaces. Those looking for a truly neutral wood pattern should consider one of the other wallpapers on our list.
While the peel-and-stick design is great for many reasons, it’s not built to last as long as traditional wallpaper paste. If you want this wallpaper to stay put for an extended time, you may need to reinforce it with extra adhesive.
Each roll measures 20.5 inches wide and 18 feet long.
3. INHOME NH3552 Driftwood Wallpaper
- Textured ink offers a realistic finish
- Easy to apply and remove
- Great for walls, furniture, and more
- Rolls are fairly small
Driftwood may not technically be the same as barn wood. But in the world of accent wallpaper, the two patterns offer nearly identical aesthetics.
This stylish peel-and-stick wallpaper boasts a weathered motif of authentic-looking wood planks. The paper is both easy to remove and repositionable.
Along with the high-quality print, this barn wood wallpaper also features raised ink. From a distance, this small detail adds a much more realistic look and feel.
While some peel-and-stick adhesives can be hit or miss, this wallpaper adheres extremely well to almost any smooth and clean surface. It can be used to spruce up furniture, backsplashes, and more.
Each roll measures 20.5 inches wide and 16.5 feet long.
4. RoomMates Distressed Wood Vinyl Peel and Stick Wallpaper
- Peel-and-stick for stress-free removal
- Detailed barn wood imagery
- Made of vinyl
- Easy to clean and water-resistant
- High cost per square foot
- Adhesive backing may need reinforcement
High-quality wallpaper is worth very little if it can’t hold up to life’s unavoidable wear and tear!
This barn wood-inspired wallpaper is made of vinyl. Vinyl is thicker and easier to clean than traditional wallpaper. Plus, it is water-resistant.
Since this wallpaper utilizes a drop match pattern — each sheet must be offset to line up the pattern — you may need extra paper to cover a large area. This isn’t a big deal for smaller projects.
And while this wallpaper is labeled as water-resistant, you should use caution when installing it in a kitchen, bathroom, or anywhere else with frequent moisture.
Each roll measures 20.5 inches wide and 16.5 inches long.
5. Walls By Me White Ivory Faux Shiplap Texture Peel and Stick Removable Wallpaper
- Extremely realistic finish
- Great for accent walls and small projects
- Water-resistant and easy to clean
- Made of eco-friendly materials
- Difficult to cover a large area
- Does not hide imperfections in the wall
- Very high cost per square foot
If you gravitate toward the bright and modern aesthetic of whitewashed shiplap, this wallpaper is exactly what you need to create the home of your dreams!
With a peel-and-stick adhesive backing and pattern that repeats every couple of feet, this wallpaper is easy to apply almost anywhere.
This barn wood wallpaper is water-resistant (but not waterproof).
Of course, the standout feature of this wallpaper is its realistic appearance. The wallpaper is incredibly thick and feels just like authentic shiplap to the touch. The matte finish only adds to the realism.
Despite the thickness of this particular wallpaper, imperfections in the wall itself may still show through. It’s best used on smooth surfaces only.
Rolls measure 2 feet wide and are available in lengths of 4, 8.5, or 10.5 feet.
With so many great wallpapers that look like barn wood to choose from, you should have no problem finding something that meets your needs!
If you’re looking for the best wallpaper for nearly any kind of project, however, we recommend the RoomMates Distressed Wood Vinyl Peel and Stick Wallpaper.
While this wallpaper comes at a premium cost, it’s both easy to install and built to last. There are several colors available — no need to compromise on style — and each one looks equally convincing as authentic wood paneling.