A feature wall, also known as an accent wall, is a wall in a home that is made to stand out — whether through paint, art or other creative uses of wall decor. These are great for spaces both small and large (even one feature wall can make an entire room feel like it’s been redone) and take little time and money to pull off. Here are a few of our favorite feature wall ideas, including our versions of the classics plus some fresh takes on what the design can mean in your home.
A dark feature wall might seem gloomy at first but with the right colors can actually convey feelings of comfort and security. Even in small rooms, dark colors like charcoal and purple work, especially in a single feature wall. A splash of dark goes a long way when you’re trying to create a space that feels relaxing and stylish. When going dark, just remember that lighting can make or break the look; brighten the lighting to bring out the energy of the color, and dim it down for a truly “sleepy” space!
Recommended for: The Bedroom
Using lighter, brighter colors for a feature wall can make a space feel bigger and more energized. For best results, choose a wall that faces a window; the natural light will enhance the saturation during the day and tone it down during the evening. Red, yellow and orange accent walls are popular options for adding warmth to a space and can even stimulate the appetite. In a bright feature wall, consider using a roller to apply a drywall or stucco finish; the added texture/dimension will make the color pop. Recommended for: The Dining Room
Instead of painting, why not let nature do the work for you? A garden feature wall makes stunning use of indoor plants. You can try your hand at a floating garden Other DIY options for featuring plants include shadowboxes, framed pressed flowers and devil’s ivy — an indoor version of the kind of vine plant that can “climb” up walls all on its own, no shelves, frames or hanging planters required. Recommended for: The Living Room
- Gallery: A wall featuring lots of framed artwork is a feature wall classic. Also a great option if you’re looking for a way to display your children’s art.
- Wall-to-wall wood shelves: This type of feature wall will require a little more time and effort, but the result will make the whole process worth it. You’ll need to find blocks of light wood (the lighter the wood, the less stress it will place on your wall’s brackets) in a size that fits along the entire length of your wall. (Try calling your local lumber yard, where custom orders are often cheaper than hardware stores.) Keep it minimal (all you really need is three or four shelves to make a statement). Install one above the other, with ten to fifteen inches of space between each to allow room for items like vases and other decorations. Use a standard leveler to make sure they are straight and spaced evenly apart. When done right, wall-to-wall shelving truly makes any wall a “feature.”
- Wallpaper: No paint or drills required! You can even try the removable variety,which doesn’t require messy glue, is often cheaper than regular wallpaper and makes a great option for renters or those who like to switch up their style every so often.