PANELLING TO FURNISH (AND DECORATE): THE BOISERIE

Wood, plaster or metal?
A journey to discover this elegant decorative technique, increasingly used in contemporary architecture.

PANELLING TO FURNISH (AND DECORATE): THE BOISERIE

Wood, plaster or metal?
A journey to discover this elegant decorative technique, increasingly used in contemporary architecture.

Very popular in France in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, the boiserie is now having another chance thanks to an increasingly widespread use of it as a real piece of furniture, able to give style and personality to the rooms in which it is used.

But what exactly is it?

As the name suggests, it is a wall covering, originally made of wood and richly inlaid, born with a double purpose: on the one hand, protecting the interior spaces from the cold temperature and the moisture, and on the other hand, simply decorating.

As the first functionality is becoming less and less important, the boiserie is now increasingly popular in contemporary architecture as an object of design, both made in traditional wood or in more innovative materials, such as plaster or metal.

Moreover, today the boiserie is being used as a protective element of the walls, especially in commercial spaces or in those rooms of the house (like the bathroom) where the risk of deterioration of simple wall paintings is higher.

Let’s find out pros and cons together.

Wood panelling: an elegant and timeless classic.

Elegant and excellent as insulation, wood is undoubtedly the first material to be considered for the realization of boiserie.

In this case, the panelling consists essentially of a series of rigid panels, fixed to the wall by dowels or special glue. These panels can be tailor-made by a carpenter following the architect’s project, if the budget allows it, but there are also options on the market ready only to be installed.

For an optimal yield, it is essential to rely on a well-defined design; there is an almost infinite range of panels on the market, different both in size and thickness, and in type of decoration, from smooth ones to those with patterns or inlays on the surface.

Having an architect’s project allows you to choose those that best harmonize with your spaces, enhancing them in the perfect way. A paneling with inlays, for example, works very well in historical environments, but it will probably be dystonic in more shabby spaces.

Even in modern spaces, using wood panelling can be perfectly harmonic.

 

When it comes to budget, wood panelling can vary from a few hundred to several thousand euros, depending on the type of material and decoration chosen. The good news is that its installation is relatively simple, so it can be managed independently or directly by the carpenter who took care of the realization, without having to cover additional costs.

Resistant, elegant and versatile: we discover together the plaster or stucco panelling.

Just as elegant, but certainly cheaper and more resistant than wood panelling, as well as more versatile in use, there are as well ceramic or stucco.

It is in fact an option that is well suited both to the decoration of facades of ancient palaces and villas and in the furnishing of internal walls.

The stucco boiserie is easy to apply and flexible to all kinds of rooms.

 

Since they are essentially prefabricated elements, to be cut to size and painted in the color of the wall, their purchase can be done safely online and they can be installed both independently or, for example, involving the painter during his work.

In the first case, a tip I would like to give you is to draw on the wall how and where the boiserie will be placed, and then proceed to shape the panels to the correct size.

Metal panelling: a solution not to be underestimated.

Finally, an option that is still a not popular to date, but it is on the rise is that of metal panelling.
The secret of its use is simply to define a rhythm, to give the wall that something that will make it unique.

 

Beyond the material chosen, a very interesting application concerns the possibility of using the panelling to hide sliding or swing ports, creating through the use of geometric patterns, of optical illusions that will make our guests remain pleasantly amazed.

Starting from the assumption that boiserie can be installed in any room of our house, even in the bathroom (because after all, even the classic tile covers are, technically, boiserie), a question that is often asked to me is: how high do I make them?

In this case the most popular options are two: at half height or at full height. This does not mean “standardizing”: boiserie can be accompanied by a ceiling frame, or even a coffered or decorated ceiling; a solution particularly suitable for period dwellings, although poorly usable in more contemporary environments.

For these, however, the installation of paneling of different heights on different walls of the same room is widely used, as the alternation of plaster walls with completely smooth walls.

Full-height boiserie can be matched with both decorated ceiling or a completely smooth wall.

 

The secret is, therefore, very simple: having an expert design that helps us make the best use of this element, so that it becomes a way of enhancing and giving personality to our spaces, and does not end up penalizing them or disconnecting from them.

And you, are you thinking of redefining your space?

Would you like some assistance with drawing the paneling that best suits them?

Contact me, I will be happy to help.

The Architect’s Advice

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Architect and urbanist, I was born in Pisticci, a town in the province of Matera, in the south of Italy.
My occupation allows me to express my passion for ARCHITECTURE, in all of its forms, from urban planning to construction, from the building site to interior design.
Image
Architect and urbanist, I was born in Pisticci, a town in the province of Matera, in the south of Italy.
My occupation allows me to express my passion for ARCHITECTURE, in all of its forms, from urban planning to construction, from the building site to interior design.

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Panelling to furnish (and decorate): the Boiserie
Very popular in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, the boiserie is now having another chance thanks to an increasingly widespread use of it as a real piece of furniture. Find out the pros and cons with my help.

DO IT YOURSELF

CREATE YOUR OWN PROJECT WITH MY HELP

DO IT YOURSELF

CREATE YOUR OWN PROJECT WITH MY HELP

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Marina D'Onofrio