One of the psychological challenges in using containers is their cold interior.
Despite the ‘cool’ industrial factor inherent in steel design, very few of us opt to live inside metal boxes. We went with our gut on this one and decided to sheath the interior with wood paneling.
The wood gave us a tough surface that we could fasten just about anything to and rearrange things over time. In any kind of industrial building, adaptation is key.
Our wall system is 1×6 t&g pine, stained with a (zero VOC) warm tone. For additional storage, we applied shelves high in the space with inverted shelf brackets (installed above the shelf). That way, the wall surface remains clear. If gusseted brackets are used, this technique also provide bookends at regular intervals.
The paneling provided a more forgiving installation than say plywood. For, as you recall, containers are neither plumb nor square nor level.