6 Steps to Accent Wall Design

But corny metaphors aside, painting an accent wall is just about the no-brainer-easiest and fastest things you can do to spiff up a room, in less than a couple of hours.

But before you go out and buy $45/gallon Ralph Lauren Orange Frenzy (or whatever) for that accent wall of yours, you’ll want to observe a few conventions:

1. Most Prominent Wall

You’ll want your accent wall to be the first, or one of the first, things you see as you enter a room.  This is not a you’ll-die-if-you-don’t-do-it type of rule, but rather nice to observe.  At the very least don’t make it the back wall.

2. Anchoring

What area of the room do you want to highlight or define?  An accent wall is great at separating areas within larger areas, such as a family sitting area that happens to be within a larger room.  Think in terms of sub-rooms, not just rooms.

3. Focal Point

Do not put make your accent wall a blank wall with nothing around it.  You’ll want a fireplace, music center, flat-screen TV, bed, fountain, or something of this nature to highlight.

Accent Wall

4. Bold Against Neutral

The most common method of painting an accent wall is to make the “target wall” something vibrant (red, pink, orange, dark green or blue) and to make surrounding walls neutral.  But you can also make the surrounding walls a lighter, paler version of the accent wall.

Color coordinating your accent wall doesn’t necessarily mean matching.  It can mean complementary colors.

5. Color Coordination

Coordinate your accent wall with a few key items in your room:  sofa, pillows, throw rug, etc.  Don’t go overboard, though.

6. Media Other Than Paint

Paint isn’t the only material you can use for your accent wall.  Think:  tile or wallpaper, too.  In addition, you can frame your accent wall in molding.