How to Create an Accent Wall: What You Need to Know

by Jane K on January 7, 2021

White Brick Accent Wall in Living Room

Want to take your home décor to the next level? It might be time to consider an accent wall. Not only do they look great, but they’re simple to design, they work with every furniture style, and they’re easy to customize to your unique style and personality. In today’s blog, the interior design experts at Star Furniture discuss what an accent wall is, how to choose an accent wall, our favorite accent wall ideas, and much more!

What is an Accent Wall?

An accent wall is any interior or exterior wall that features a different color, shade, design, pattern, or material from the other walls in the room. The purpose of an accent wall is to draw visual attention and they’re often used as the focal point in a room. Accent walls can be used in any room in the house, including living rooms, family rooms, dining rooms, kitchens, bedrooms, hallways, home offices, and bathrooms.

Are Accent Walls Outdated?

Rest assured, accent walls are still thriving in the decorating industry, and we don’t see them waning in popularity any time soon. Because accent walls are so customizable, even if accent walls look a bit different than they have in the past, the original principle remains. If you want to keep your accent walls looking fresh and stylish, be sure to pay attention to popular home décor trends and try incorporating them into your accent wall décor.

How to Choose an Accent Wall?

Wondering which wall should be the accent wall in any given room? While there aren’t any hard and fast rules you need to abide by, there are things you should consider when making the decision.

Consider the Natural Focal Point of the Room

When deciding which wall should be the accent wall, one consideration is the natural focal point of the room. Where do your eyes naturally fall? In some rooms, this will likely be a certain architectural feature of the room, like a fireplace or a built-in bookshelf. In other rooms, this will have more to do with the furniture arrangement. One strategy for choosing an accent wall is choosing the wall that lines up best with the focal point of the room.

Consider the Room’s Dimensions

The room’s dimension will likely influence which wall will work best as an accent wall, especially if you’re working with an oddly shaped room. If you’re decorating a long, narrow living room, for example, choosing the farthest, shortest wall can help balance the shape of the room, making it feel more square.

Consider the Room’s Function

Function is key when decorating any room in the house, so if you’re considering an accent wall in a given room, you’ll want to consider how you plan to use it. Generally speaking, accent walls work great for open floor plans or rooms that serve multiple functions, like a kitchen dining room combo. Putting an accent wall behind the dining room table, for example, can make the area look distinct.

Consider Furniture Arrangement

Another way to decide which wall should be the accent wall is considering the furniture arrangement. Bedroom accent walls, for example, often look best on the wall behind the headboard, since a bed serves as a natural focal point for the room.

Consider the Room’s Architectural Details

While walls with certain architectural features, like fireplaces, work perfectly for accent walls, others can cause challenges. Generally speaking, if there’s not a specific wall that’s calling out to you, you’ll want to choose one that’s relatively solid with limited windows and doors. While you may think you want to highlight a large picture window, for example, accent colors can sometimes distract from beautiful views rather than accentuating them, and natural lighting can alter the way a paint color shows up on the wall.

Accent Wall Ideas

One of the reasons accent walls withstand the test of time is that you can very quickly and easily adapt the idea to your own personal style and tastes. Need ideas for how to get started? Take a look at some of our favorite accent wall ideas for every room in the house.

The Painted Accent Wall

Blue Accent Wall with Painting

A painted accent wall is likely what you imagine when you picture the concept of an accent wall. If you’re designing a painted accent wall, you’ll want to choose a color that complements the other walls in the room, as well as the color palette you’ve chosen for your furniture and home décor.

The Patterned Accent Wall

Patterned Wallpaper Accent Wall

Don’t want to paint your accent wall? Wallpaper also works great for highlighting a wall in the room. Choose from fun geometric patterns, stripes, natural patterns, or other bold wallpaper choices that will draw attention to the wall and add a pop of fun to your room.

The Material Accent Wall

White Brick Accent Wall in Living Room

One way to draw visual attention to your accent wall is by covering it in a material like brick, tiles, or shiplap. Using a different material for an accent wall creates texture and visual interest in the room. The best part? Depending on which material you use, you still have an option for bold colors and patterns or something more subtle.

The Wood Panel Accent Wall

Living Room With Wood Accent Wall

Hoping to create an accent wall that incorporates some of the latest interior design trends? Wooden panel accent walls have been gaining in popularity, and they work great if you’re looking for some rustic farmhouse charm for your home. Whether you’re decorating a kitchen, family room, or bedroom, wood paneling can add richness, depth, and a natural look your family will love.

Statement Piece Accent Wall

Statement Piece Accent Wall

One of our favorite accent wall ideas takes a big statement piece and uses it to decorate the wall. Whether it’s a beautiful hanging textile, a large piece of wall art, or a few wall art coordinates arranged artfully on the wall, adding a statement piece to your accent wall is a great way to add visual interest. The best part? It can be used in tandem with some of the other accent wall ideas. You might, for example, have a large brick accent wall with a piece of oversized abstract art.

Gallery Accent Wall

Gallery Accent Wall Living Room

Want to create a wall that showcases your personality and taste? Gallery walls are one of our favorite accent wall ideas for people who are willing to put in the extra work to create the room of their dreams. To get started, consider a theme and color scheme. While color shouldn’t exclude anything you want to put on the wall, you will want to consider color, size, and content when deciding which pictures to put where. You’ll also want to be sure to play with different levels. That doesn’t just mean arranging items on the wall. We recommend extending the gallery wall off the wall, adding some artwork to shelves and tables along the wall.

Mirrored Accent Wall

Accent Wall with Mirrors

Planning an accent wall in a room that’s short on space? Mirrored accent walls don’t just add visual interest to the room, they can also make a room look bigger. If you do decide to decorate your accent wall with a single mirror or a gallery wall of mirrors, pay special attention to what you’re reflecting. Hanging mirrors directly across from windows and lighting fixtures, for example, can add more natural light to the room and create the illusion of space, making the room feel airy and open.

Mural Accent Wall

Perhaps the most ambitious of the accent wall ideas we’re proposing, painting a mural on an accent wall is a fun way to showcase your personality and create a statement piece that will certainly get your guests talking.

Accent Wall Color Ideas

For many, an accent wall is a great way to give a splash of bold color you wouldn’t feel comfortable painting the whole room in. But bright, bold colors aren’t the only option. Here are some of our favorite accent wall color ideas for every room in the house.

The Dark-Colored Accent Wall

Dark accent walls can be great if you’re looking for some contrast. Whether you go with black, dark blue, or dark green, dark accent walls hide dirt well and can really make a wall pop, especially in contrast to light or neutral-colored walls. They can also seamlessly camouflage dark TV screens and computer monitors, making them a great option for decorating a living room or home office.

The Boldly-Colored Accent Wall

Perhaps the most traditional style for accent walls, a boldly colored accent wall can add a lot of personality to a room. Whether you choose a bright blue, red, orange, or yellow, make sure to incorporate some neutrals into your color scheme so the accent wall really pops. For another splash of color, try incorporating the color of the accent wall into throw pillows, textiles, or accessories in the room.

The Soft-Hue Accent Wall

Especially if you’re decorating in the transitional style, you may want to avoid dark and boldly colored walls in favor of something a bit more neutral. Choosing a soft-hued color in a relatively neutral shade can still create a light contrast that can add depth to your room.

Accent Walls for Every Room in the House

When creating an accent wall, different rooms in the house offer different opportunities. Here are some tips for setting up an accent wall in specific rooms.

Living Room Accent Wall

One of our favorite living room accent wall ideas involves segmenting off a space. Because open floor plans have become so popular, we’ve found that the right accent wall can help break up a large, open living room, and create an area that feels unique and contained.

Bedroom Accent Wall

If you’re considering a bedroom accent wall, we recommend choosing the wall behind the headboard. Generally speaking, you want your accent wall to stand out, and because of where the attention naturally falls in a bedroom, the headboard wall naturally works wonders.

Kitchen Accent Wall

One of our favorite kitchen accent wall ideas involves bringing in some texture with a rustic wood paneled wall. Not only does this look go great with the farmhouse style that’s so popular today, it also brings in a bit of the natural world, which works especially well if you’re trying to incorporate biophilic style into your home.

Dining Room Accent Wall

When decorating a dining room accent wall, make sure to remember that an accent wall is about more than color. Find ways to highlight the architectural features of the room while also adding texture and depth.

Hallway Accent Wall

Looking to add an accent wall in your hallway? Make sure to consider the décor in all of the connecting rooms. If you do a painted accent wall, for example, you’ll want to make sure to choose a hue that will flow through adjoining rooms.

Home Office Accent Wall

How to make a home office in a small space is one of the questions we’ve been asked the most this year, and accent walls can really spruce up a home office, no matter the size. We love the idea of placing a bold accent wall behind the desk to highlight the space. Looking for color ideas? Red, blue, yellow, and green have been shown to boost productivity, making them the perfect color for a home office.

Looking to redecorate your home? At Star Furniture, we have a huge selection of high-quality living room, dining room, bedroom, and home office furniture for sale in every style and budget.

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