Bedroom MDF Wall Panelling Advice & Inspiration


Written by Maddie

Do you want to transform your bedroom with MDF panelling? Maybe you aren’t sure how? We can help with our guide on how to install panelling in your bedroom. 

Bedroom Wall Panelling At A Glance

The MDF wall panelling trend has boomed in the last 12 months, and it’s not hard to see why. The beauty of wall panelling is that it can be installed in any interior room – it isn’t just for living rooms and hallways. Wall panelling in the bedroom is one of our favourite topics, if you’re looking to transform your bedroom with relative ease – keep reading. 

Jacobean Bedroom Wall Panelling courtesy of These Three Rooms

Can You Do Wall Panelling Yourself?

Yes regardless of whether you’re a DIY amateur or an experienced interior designer, wall panelling is easy to install yourself. We’ve included a how to install a DIY mdf wall panelling kit guide below to help you switch up those drab interior walls.

Is Wall Panelling A Good Idea?

We’re biased but we think it’s a fantastic way of transforming your bedroom with minimal fuss. Wall Panneling gives much needed texture to walls and can create a stand out feature in any interior room, which is why panelling in the bedroom is so popular right now. The versatility of bedroom wall panelling means you aren’t limited to using only one style of panel, it can fit with any aesthetic whether you like cool and crisp shades or bold and rich colours, plus it’s so easy to install.

Shaker Styke bedroom panelling from Greenbank interiors

Does Wall Panelling Make A Room Look Smaller?

When it comes to installing panelling in your bedroom you may want to take the following factors into consideration: the height of the wall panels, the amount of natural daylight your room receives and the shade in which you decide to paint your panels and the rest of the room.

If you have a large bedroom you can install floor to ceiling wall panelling without compromising the size of the room, for small bedrooms we would recommend either panelling to mid-height or panelling one wall as a feature wall.

If you don’t receive an average amount of natural daylight in your bedroom it would be beneficial to use a neutral palette when decorating this will maximise the space.

Ultimately, if you’re looking to make a small room appear bigger it would be more preferable to use a lighter shade. However, this is simply a guide, if you have a small bedroom but want to panel the entirety of your interior walls, go for it. 

How Do You Do Bedroom Panelling? 

When it comes to bedroom panelling you’re spoilt for choice, there are a heap of different panelling styles and designs out there to choose from. Initially you will need to select a style and the placement for your mdf bedroom panelling. You can place the panelling across half the wall or cover the entirety of the area from floor to ceiling.

Measuring your walls is one of the most important steps, with these measurements you can then work out how many wall panels you will need. It’s advisable to buy more than you need, no one wants to get caught short. We would highly recommend using an mdf wall panelling kit to transform your bedroom walls. These kits make the process a lot easier and there are an abundance of styles available. MDF room panelling kits come with instructions and we’ve put together a handy mdf wall panelling kit installation guide for you, it includes everything you need to know about the panelling process. Alternatively, why not utilise our mdf cut to size service, simply input the measurements of your wall panels and we’ll do the rest.

Styles Of MDF Panelling In the Bedroom

If there’s one thing we truly love, it’s wall panelling – but we are even more obsessed with panelling in bedrooms. If you’re stuck for ideas on which style of panel you want – have a quick look at our Wall Panelling Ideas & Inspo page. With so many styles to choose from, it all really comes down to your own personal taste and the look you are trying to achieve. If you have a passion for contemporary design we highly recommend shaker style or geometric panelling. If you’re after something more traditional, why not browse Jacobean or Tongue & Groove panelling. The paint and furnishings you choose to accompany the panelling in your bedroom will see you boudoir metamorphosize into a truly unique space.

We’ve narrowed down the different wall panel styles to make it a bit easier to decide what would look best in your bedroom. We’ve included pinnacle panel styles, traditional panelling designs and contemporary wall panel ideas – a little something for everyone. 

Here are the four most popular types of wall panels on the market today. 

Shaker Panelling 

Shaker wall panels are very on trend right now. Distinguishable by its evenly spaced rectangular patterns – this type of panelling creates a refined aesthetic. You will often see this elegant style used on doors and cabinets too. Don’t be fooled by the simplicity of the design, once painted it instantly transforms any room into a decadent living space. You can make it bold and interesting with a darker shade or clean and crisp with more neutral tones.

Shaker Wall Panelling Bedroom

Tongue & Groove

We often refer to this style of wall panel as slat panelling, why? Well it’s created by placing slats alongside each other across the wall. It’s a classic style of panel, often found in high traffic areas such as bathrooms and hallways – places where you typically get a lot of wear and tear. However, one of our favourite placements is of course the bedroom.  Using this type of wall panelling in the bedroom is ideal because you can place it up to the height of your headboard and protect the walls from any potential bumps. It also gives a really fresh aesthetic to the room, especially when combined with cool shades like stone, off-white and cream. 

Tongue & Groove Bedroom Panelling from Houzz

Jacobean Wall Panelling 

This stunning style complements any bedroom. It’s a firm favourite with interior designers and A-list celebrities right now. The design consists of panels that form a square shape, resembling a blank chess board when installed. The beauty of Jacobean panelling in the bedroom is that you can cover all of the walls or just the one, it’s bold and can be flamboyant or subtle depending on your taste.

Jacobean Bedroom Panelling from Construction2Style

Geometric Wall Panelling

The newest member of the wall panelling family, this version has put a contemporary twist on traditional wall panelling. Geometric wall panels are usually made up of fine strips which are then placed on the wall in a geometric design – like triangles and lines. They can be fixed horizontally, diagonally or vertically. It’s extremely versatile and can be used to draw attention to one wall or an entire room. It’s the perfect style if you’re looking to modernise your bedroom. Once painted it will transform your bedroom into an ultra-modern space. 

Geometric Bedroom Wall Panelling courtesy of Houzz

What Colours Can I Use For Wall Panelling In The Bedroom?

When installing panelling in the bedroom – it’s better to plan ahead. Take some time to think about the overall aesthetic you are trying to achieve. You might want to use striking shades to create a bold transformation. Perhaps you prefer a more understated and demure look – this can be achieved by using lighter, neutral colours. 

If your bedroom panelling project  is an amalgamation of both styles, why not compromise and pair bright and vibrant tones with softer shades to create a stylish contrast. If you want to switch up the aesthetic, the combination of wall panelling and wallpaper is a clever means of making an eye-catching statement. 

Bold & Beautiful Bedroom Wall Panelling via Style Your Sanctuary

Installing Panelling in Your Bedroom

Can MDF be used for interior walls?

Yes MDF is actually the perfect product to use for panelling your bedroom. It’s durable, strong and looks absolutely incredible once painted.

What Will I Need For Wall Panelling In The Bedroom?

Before you begin your mdf wall panelling bedroom project, the must have items you will need are:

  • MDF Cut to Size
  • A spirit level
  • Heavy duty adhesive
  • Caulk
  • A Saw / Utility Knife
  • MDF Primer
  • Paint
  • Paint Brush / fluffy roller & tray
  • Sandpaper/ electric sander
  • Hammer (optional)
  • Nails (optional)
  • Tape measure

How do you space a wall panel?

Your MDF will arrive cut to size, from the measurements you recorded you will be able to map them out accordingly. It is important that the panels are evenly spaced to achieve the symmetry that panelling is famed for. Take into consideration the size of your wall and you should be able to work out the spacing requirements. 

Do you need to caulk Panelling?

Yes, you can use Caulk to disguise the seams between panels. Don’t be too overzealous with the application of the Caulk as a little will go far. 

How Much Wall Panelling Do I Need For A Bedroom?

Start by measuring the space you will be panelling, the amount of panels you will need depends entirely on the style of panel you have chosen. We would recommend sketching a blueprint of the room and using the measurements of the mdf panelling kit to see how much it will cover. We imagine you may need more than one kit for a medium sized wall. 

What Type Of Wall Panel Kit Should I Buy For My Bedroom?

Not all MDF Wall panelling kits are created equal, so take your time and do your research beforehand. Read the product description, reviews and testimonials to obtain a better understanding of what you’re actually buying. You will also need to think of the style of panelling you want and whether it will cover the entirety of the wall or only reach a specific height. MDF Cut to size provides a more bespoke wall panelling solution, after all wall panelling isn’t a one-size-fits-all product.

Where Can I Buy MDF Panelling Kits For The Bedroom?

We’re based in the UK so this advice is for the UK consumer only. You can buy mdf cut to size online or at your local DIY store. There are many types of wall panelling styles available, so make sure you know the style you’re looking for as the strips are cut to spec so you may have measured for a Jacobean wall panel style but end up buying Shaker Style – the length and width of the strips will be entirely different so be prepared. 

Are Wall Panelling Kits Hard To Use?

Not really, but it is advisable that you follow the instructions to the letter. Panelling kits are designed for everybody regardless of their level of DIY skill, the process is easy to follow and provided the kit is bought from a reputable supplier – anyone can do it. Of course mistakes can be made, that’s why we’ve highlighted these mistakes in this blog post – to help you avoid them. 

MDF Wall Panelling Installation Tips

What Style Of Panelling Should I Pick For My Bedroom?

The most important step before embarking on your wall panelling journey is to choose the style of panel you want. We’ve already outlined the different styles available, we would advise doing your research first, making sure the style suits your tastes and complements the size of the room. If you’re stuck on ideas for panelling inspiration – check out our Panelling Ideas & Inspo Blog – there are heaps of designs to help you pick the right panel for your bedroom. 

Measure Your Bedroom Walls

This step is vital to any successful wall panelling bedroom project. Once you’ve decided upon the style of panelling you’ll be using in your bedroom – you need to measure the surface area you plan on covering. 

Once you’ve established where you’ll be panelling, you can then calculate how many wall panels you will need in your kit. You may have to purchase more than one wall panel kit as they often come in strips of 6 or 9. 

Measure the full width and height of the bedroom walls you plan on panelling, take into consideration the skirting board, coving, plug and light sockets and any fitted furniture you might have. Always, always triple check the measurements to make sure the panels will fit perfectly. We discovered a really helpful wall panelling calculator if you’re finding it hard to calculate the amount of wall panels you need –

Photo by Brett Jordan on Unsplash

Cut Your MDF Wall Panels To Size

Technically when you buy an mdf wall panelling kit for your bedroom in the UK the strips come pre-cut for you. But for styles such as Jacobean wall panelling, you will need to trim down the strips that are placed horizontally to stop the panels from overlapping. 

Trimming MDF panels to size can seem like a daunting task, but there are a few ways you can cut MDF strips down to your desired measurements. It all depends on the tools you have. If you’re fortunate enough to have a table saw, you can use it to make cuts lengthways – often referred to as ‘ripping’ this is a great option for strip panels which are perhaps too wide and need trimming down to size. If you don’t have a table saw, you can use a Miter/ Mitre saw or a circular saw. 

Check Those Bedroom Walls Before Panelling

When installing wall panelling in your bedroom, it’s really important that you inspect your walls prior to the application of the panels. You need to check for lumps, bumps, holes and cracks – if you find any of these blemishes and they don’t affect the overall structure of the wall  – you can fix them up yourself. You need to sand down any lumps or bumps with sandpaper and ensure the wall is smooth – you can use an electric sander if you have a large surface area to cover. Little holes can be filled and sanded until unnoticeable. Cracks are something we would recommend having a professional take a look at. You need to sand the wall to ensure the panels are applied to a smooth surface, otherwise it could completely throw off all of the lovely symmetry. 

Fixing Your Wall Panels To The Bedroom Wall

The style of wall panelling you have chosen for your bedroom will decide how you place the panels on the wall. We always advise starting from the middle of the wall to ensure symmetry, unless your MDF wall panelling kit instructions state otherwise. 

How do I glue MDF panels to the wall?

Use a strong heavy duty grab adhesive to stick your mdf panels to the wall. In order to glue the mdf panels firmly to the wall, you need to apply the glue in a zigzag motion to the MDF strip and then press the panel firmly against the wall – then leave it to dry. For extra hold you can use both glue and nails. When applying the wall panels follow the instructions that have come with the mdf wall panelling kit. They will tell you in which order and direction you need to place them in. 

Check Your Panels For Gaps & Fill

Once your bedroom wall panels are dry and securely attached to the wall, you need to inspect them for gaps. Walls commonly aren’t particularly even so you may find that there are some gaps that need filling. This is easy enough to sort, you can use decorators caulk to fill the gaps, disguise any blemishes and to create seamless joins. 

How To Achieve The Right Aesthetic For Your Bedroom Panelling

Photo by RhondaK Native Florida Folk Artist on Unsplash

Prime & Paint Your Bedroom Wall Panels

The key to a flawless paint job when working with mdf wall panelling is to ensure that you prime your MDF panels before you paint them. You don’t want to ruin all that lovely panelling in your bedroom by forgetting to prime it. Before you begin, double check that your wall panels are securely fixed to your bedroom wall and that the caulk has completely dried.

You must always prime your MDF wall panelling before you begin painting – it’s a non-negotiable. MDF is very porous, if you paint it without a primer it will immediately absorb the paint and large bubbles will form on the surface. If you don’t prime your panels beforehand you’ll end up spending an absolute  fortune on paint or even worse have to start again. You should  apply two to three coats of primer and let it dry before you start painting. 

Painting Your Bedroom Wall Panelling

This is the best part of the process, bringing your bedroom panelling to life!  There are no restrictions on the shades you can use, it’s entirely down to your personal taste and the aesthetic you want to achieve. 

Stunning two tone bedroom wall panelling from These Three Rooms

What Type Of Paint Should I Use On My MDF Wall Panelling Kit?

As long as you prime your bedroom mdf wall panels beforehand, you can use any paint you wish, emulsion, satinwood, gloss –  the options are endless. 

How Do You Paint MDF Wall Panelling Kits?

Use a fluffy roller to paint the wall and the panel strips to ensure the paint is evenly distributed, you can cut in using a brush. Then leave it to dry and soon enough you’ll have a beautifully panelled bedroom to admire. 

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