The Wainscot panel is a classic panel style that originated during the colonial era in the United States. It gives the impression of raised panels by bevelling the edges of the panels used in the façade construction. This technique can be used to create a decorative full-length wall or to enhance a traditional kitchen by covering only half the wall as a form of trim. The panel’s basic construction includes a top rail, stiles, the bevelled panel itself, and a bottom rail. If you choose to create a half-wall accent in the kitchen, you should add a cap molding and cove molding to provide a decorative transition. The bottom rail on both full-length and half-length designs can also serve as the baseboard.

Wainscoting is not limited to wall treatments; the technique can also be applied to any panels, such as those used in kitchen cabinet doors. This paneling style adds a cottage-like feel to any kitchen and can be added even after the initial installation of the cabinets. Simply remove the doors and convert them to Wainscot panels by bevelling the edges of the center panel before reassembling and rehanging the door.