Whether your tastes lean minimalist, traditional, maximalist, or mod, you want your space to make a statement. One of our favorite ways? Creating an accent wall.
While furniture and décor are essential to defining your look, the walls in your space play just as important a role. If you love the look of wall art, wallpaper, or a bold pop of color – but don’t want to overwhelm the space – a feature wall is the perfect way to express your style without going overboard. We’ll show you a few of our favorite accent wall ideas for the living room, bedroom, and beyond …
One of the easiest ways to refresh your space is through the use of a gallery wall. Versatile, eye-catching, and wholly customizable, gallery walls allow you to create a look that’s all your own.
If you prefer a clean, even look, choose pieces in the same shape, size, and color palette to create a uniform tiled effect. For a more eclectic look, incorporate pieces in a variety of shapes and finishes. Pair a variety of rectangular picture frames with an oversized clock, or add dimension to your space with 3-D wall decals and ceramic taxidermies. If you love shiny, glamorous style, try creating a gallery wall with nothing but mirrors.
In most galleries and museums, the standard display height measures 57 inches from the floor to the center of the artwork. Use a tape measure and pencil to mark 57 inches up the wall, then hang the centerpiece of your gallery wall so its midpoint aligns with the marking.
To incorporate your favorite non-hanging accents, add a couple of floating shelves to your gallery wall. You’ll be able to replicate the look while displaying books, vases, or houseplants. Looking for something that’s both pretty and practical? Take some tips from HGTV’s Brian Patrick Flynn and create a gallery wall out of hanging hats, bags, or accessories.
Accent Walls With Shelves & Storage
Accent wall décor isn’t limited to paintings, wallpaper, or hanging accessories. In fact, you can use practical pieces such as bookcases, shelves, and entertainment centers to create a feature wall that’s both high-fashion and high-function.
If you love collecting trinkets and curios, try a twist on the standard gallery wall with a variety of floating shelves or shadowboxes. You’ll be able to display your favorite treasures in the same dynamic, eclectic style of a gallery wall.
Bookshelves are another great way to add decorative drama. And as an added bonus, they require none of the hassle that comes with wall-mounting. Make a major statement in your space with a full wall of bookcases, or go for a simpler look by flanking your TV or headboard with a pair of stylish shelves.
Not sure how to style your bookshelves? Check out our “How to Decorate Your Bookshelf” post for some extra inspiration.
Bold, patterned wallpaper is another great way to create a dramatic accent wall. While wallpaper has earned a bit of a reputation as messy, difficult to apply, and even harder to remove, technology has made great strides in recent years. Today, peel-and-stick temporary wallpaper allows homeowners (and renters!) to refresh their spaces. The best part? There’s no glue, hassle, or permanence involved.
If you want to create a feature wall with wallpaper but aren’t ready to go uber-bold, try a small, subtle pattern in a color that matches the rest of the room. Alternatively, you can get the wallpaper look without covering the entire surface. Apply a single strip of paper to a wall in a contrasting color, then frame the leftover wallpaper to create a gallery wall.
If you really want to make a statement, go ahead and choose a bold, eye-catching print for your accent wall. Oversized geometric patterns, mural scenes, and chic floral prints allow you to truly express yourself. And with wallpaper that looks like a work of art itself, you won’t have to fuss with hammers, nails, or hanging hardware.
Colorful Accent Walls
If applying wallpaper still feels too labor intensive, you can easily create an accent wall with just a coat of paint. We love the look of a single colorful accent wall against an otherwise neutral paint scheme, or one black chalkboard wall in an all-white room.
When choosing an accent wall color, consider the shades you’ll be using for the other walls. If the other walls are painted a neutral shade of gray, beige, or cream, you can feel free to use nearly any color for your accent wall. Choose a bright, bold shade to add a major pop of color, or keep it more neutral with pastels or light, muted colors. For extra drama, choose a deep and dark hue such as eggplant, navy, or forest green.
If you’re using color on the other three walls, try to use its complementary shade as an accent. Cool, rich colors such as indigo and purple look best opposite yellow and gold tones, while shades of green, teal, and turquoise complement deep oranges and reds. (If you don’t know which color will best complement your space, simply consult a color wheel.)
A Textured Accent Wall
An eye-catching accent wall can also be achieved through the use of unexpected texture. Tiles, paneling, and textured wall flats are all great ways to add stylish dimension to your walls, and the custom-built look instantly elevates the space.
Try adding shiplap or wood paneling to your accent wall for a farmhouse- or coastal-inspired look, or make a statement with funky wall flats. We especially love the look of a textured wall directly behind a bed. It serves as an elegant alternative to a traditional headboard.
If you like the idea of brick, stone, or wood paneling but can’t install the real thing, try hanging some wallpaper that looks just like it. You’ll get the textured look you love without any construction or remodeling.
If you’re ready to get to work creating an accent wall of your own, Hayneedle has everything you need to get the job done. Shop wallpaper, shelving, décor, and more to get the look and create your masterpiece.