White beadboard is coming out of the woodwork and into kitchen cabinetry and unexpected areas in the bath. Whether a homeowner seeks to recall turn-of-the-century summer retreats or just wants a clean, country look, a touch of this Victorian wainscoting bestows instant cottage chic.

“Beadboard is a classic element used in traditional and cottage-style designs,” says Ann Miller, product design manager for Armstrong Decorative Ceilings. “However, the neutral finish and clean lines make it an ideal fit for contemporary décor schemes as well.” Armstrong's Wood-Haven beadboard ceiling planks are designed with kitchens and baths in mind, because they can spruce up a stained ceiling or add architectural interest to a small space. “Choices in ceiling décor aren't just limited to white gypsum drywall,” emphasizes Bill Vaughn, Armstrong's marketing manager.


Cabinetry is an obvious showcase for beadboard's charms. A number of manufacturers have added a bright, white door alongside darker glazes and finishes. Timberlake's Tucson collection features a white beadboard door with a full overlay. The beadboard panel on the Nantucket door from Quality can be mixed with plain white door and panel styles for a more varied or contemporary look.

Beadboard in the bath is a fitting counterpoint to the “luxury spa” trend. Traditional paneling imparts an unfussy appearance behind simple fixtures. New England Classic's ClassicBeadboard panel has a rounded double bead design whose uncomplicated look brings bold grace to a humble room.

For a unique embellishment, Magnolia's Bead Board design toilet seat (pictured) is sculpted from wood composite and offers classic simplicity in an unexpected spot.

For more product information, visit ebuild, Hanley Wood's interactive product catalog, www.ebuild.com.