There’s a look that’s heating up design-savvy kitchens right now. Have you heard the phrase “shiplap”, smiled and nodded, while secretly wondering what it is? Well if you look to the kitchen above, designed by Anna Carin Design, you’ll see the panelled look of the cabinetry, and that’s the basis of the shiplap style that we’re seeing more and more.

Shiplap refers to rough-hewn panelling or cladding that has a similar look to tongue-and-groove timber boards. The bevelled-edge boards offer a slightly rustic look that lends itself to streamlined kitchens with character. “We used this technique to bring a traditional element to a quite a contemporary kitchen,” says Anna-Carin. Original shiplap is made from timber, but you can also find MDF versions that can be more suitable for a hardworking kitchen. But what are some of the considerations before “shiplapping” your whole place or joinery? Anna-Carin says you need think about proportions. “For the above space, the kitchen doors and drawers were v-routed by our joiner. It’s important to consider the proportions of the doors and drawers to work out the spacing between the routed lines.” Looking to our September issue’s cover home, owner Rebecca said of her stunning kitchen: “Nobody was convinced on the shiplap-style joinery… but I stood my ground”. You only have to see her space (here) to understand why the look is such a strong trend.

And it’s not just about the cabinetry, though this is the latest application for shiplap. Traditionally, it was added to walls, as in this kitchen by Anna-Carin. Speak to your builder, joiner or interior designer about adding this element to your space, before the shiplap sails!

Check out this award-winning shiplap-style  kitchen:

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