Looking for DIY Accent Wall Ideas to makeover spaces in your home? Here are 10 creative ideas to make your accent walls stand out.
I can still remember when we moved into our student housing apartment at the University of Texas and the walls were brick.
How in the world can you decorate or hang anything on the walls when you are surrounded by mortar and bricks.
Some people might have been overwhelmed.
Some people might have given up.
I got creative and figured out how to jam pencils in the mortar between the bricks and create an entire art installation and accent wall in that brick apartment.
Over the years, I’ve designed and painted hundreds of walls for myself and for clients.
(total aside: I used to co-own a faux finish business here in Texas called “How Great Thou Art.”)
If you have a small budget and big decorating dreams? Painting a wall with a pattern or design or stripe? It’s the easiest way to transform a room.
Here are 10 creative ideas for accent walls (and the paint colors I used to transform them).
JUST A FEW WALL PAINTING TIPS BEFORE WE TAKE IT NEXT LEVEL:
Q: What are the tools and materials that you’ll need?
It truly depends on the project. In my faux finish business we had tons of sponges and brushes and stencils and other painting tools, but if you are just painting a few walls in your home, here are some simple tools that you’ll need:
- a GOOD basic paint brush (I stress good because you don’t want a brush where the bristles come out in the middle of your painting technique)
- an angled paintbrush (perfect for corners and hard-to-reach spots–this angled paintbrush is my favorite)
- paint roller
- paint roller extension
- painter’s tape
- drop cloths (I like the canvas ones that you can reuse instead of the plastic ones)
- paint tray
- wipes (I love to have wipes on hand to fix any mistakes I make when painting)
Q: How much paint do you need when painting a room?
You’ll need paint for the basic foundation color in the space. A really good way to estimate paint is to plan on 1 gallon of paint for every 400 feet. If you are doing a decorative paint treatment, you typically need a quart of each of the colors you’re using. It’s also important to take into account the colors you are using. For example, darker colors will require more coverage and therefore, more paint.
Q: How to prep a room for painting?
I go in-depth about this in this recent post. You will need to push the furniture into a corner of the room, take everything off the walls and dust the walls and corners before you paint. Next, patch any holes (where you’re not going to re-hang something) with spackle before you get started.
Next, tape off the wall you’re going to be working on with painter’s tape and lay down drop cloths.
Have them shake the paint at the store for you before you use it, or make sure it is well-stirred with a wooden stir stick or paint mixer before you start to paint.
Q: How much time do you need to paint a room?
It usually takes us about an hour per coat depending on the size of the room.
When planning out your project, remember that your time depends on how many coats you are painting in the space, the paint color you’ve chosen and the intricacy of the painting technique you are using.
Make sure to allow extra time for prep and clean-up, too.
1. PANELED ACCENT WALL
This wall is such a great solution if you have a slanted ceiling like this one.
We wrapped the molding up the edge of the ceiling and painted the wall with SW Urbane Bronze.
This wall treatment is so much easier than it looks. We used the wall as the backdrop and added 1″ x 4″ strips of wood on the wall.
2. FAUX WALLPAPER ACCENT WALL
This isn’t wallpaper even though it looks like it.
It’s actually a stencil.
The accent wall was painted SW Pure White. Then, we started with one color of paint on the stencil. And then the next layer was painted on with accent paints.
You can see how to create faux wallpaper here.
3. DIY PAINTED HEXAGON WALL
I created this wall for a magazine feature.
The only challenge?
It involves math.
And because I decided to add hexagon wood shelves to the middle of the wall, too.
But the room? The design? When you finish it? It’s absolutely amazing.
Here’s an overall look at the colors we used from lightest to darkest.
- SW Repose Gray (lightest)
- SW Mindful Gray
- SW Acier
- SW Dovetail
- SW Gauntlet Gray (darkest)
- SW Neighborly Peach (lightest)
- SW Inventive Orange
- SW Copper Harbor
- SW Determined Orange (darkest)
4. DIY PAINTED STRIPED ACCENT WALL
This is a great place to start when learning how to paint a wall with decorative painting techniques.
It’s an easy way to make a small space like a hallway or entryway get noticed.
One quick tip: you don’t want your stripes to be even. When measuring out your stripes make one stripe slightly larger than the other stripe to make them look a little more custom.
Here we took the accent wall to the next level with a painted stripe accent wall and painted stripe curtains to match.
See this and a zillion other stripe painting tips here.
5. DIY CUBE ACCENT WALL
This was one of the hardest walls that we’ve ever painted.
It’s a cube wall.
As in a wall full of cubes. It was a math situation. Good thing I have a math expert that lives at the house.
Here are the colors that we used with the project:
- SW Cavern Clay
- SW Greek Villa
Here are all the step-by-step instructions and how to paint a wall with cubes.
6. DIY RAISED DIAMOND CORAL ACCENT WALL
This is a room I worked on for my mother.
We had a super limited budget and not a lot of time.
We added raised diamonds to the room and painted it SW Coral Reef.
7. DIY GEOMETRIC SQUARE ACCENT WALL
This is a simple wall treatment that you can create with just painter’s tape and a quart of paint.
I have the outline for the project on the post.
It’s really easy once you have a few tips.
8. BLUE ACCENT WALL
Sometimes all you need to change it up in a room is a single color.
This office makeover started with painting a single wall in the back.
The wall is painted SW Sea Serpent.
9. DIY HERRINGBONE ACCENT WALL
I never met a herringbone that I didn’t like.
So I created a wall treatment around it.
I planned it with different shades of blue to create an ombre pattern, but I think it would also be so pretty if it were just two colors, too.
Here are the step-by-step instructions on how to paint a DIY herringbone wall.
10. DIY RAISED PANEL ACCENT WALL
This was my office in the gatehouse.
It was just a blank wall.
We transformed it with a little paint and some wood. You could also create the same look with frames.
Here are the step-by-step instructions on how to paint a raised panel wall.
See what I mean?
A painted wall (even if it’s just painted bookcases) is such an easy way to transform a space.
Just know I’m here if you have any questions about how to paint a wall or any of these wall treatments.
Or paint colors.
Or general conversation.
I’m just a decorating e-mail away. 🙂