How to Decorate Walls to Refresh Your Space

how to decorate walls

Have you found yourself sitting staring at a blank wall space, thinking that you could really do with refreshing your wall decor and making the room more interesting and inviting? Then you are ready to learn how to decorate walls!

There are so many options for decorating walls, and the joyous thing about tackling your wall decor rather than an entire room is that it is a cost-effective and undaunting way of bringing interest to your room.

Tempting as it might be to just throw everything at the blank space, various considerations, such as mirrors, tiles, or paints, will help you create the ideal solution for your room. A blank canvas of a wall can be the perfect opportunity to express something about yourself, who you are and what your interests are, so it is worth spending a little time getting it right!

Below, we have laid out steps to follow that will help you create the perfect space for you to relax, entertain or live your family life.

What Is the Problem That You Are Trying to Resolve?

There are many reasons to want to decorate your walls, and it is important to explore these before getting started, so you know that the final result meets those goals.

You may have moved on from a minimalist style, where you did like clean, simple decoration, but now you fancy bringing colour or features onto the blank walls. Or perhaps you have a room with little natural light, and you want to provide better lighting and warmth into the room. Maybe you have recently found an artist you like, and you would like to transform your bare walls into a gallery wall instead.

These are all reasons to take the step to create visual interest in what were stark walls, so start by capturing your main issues and what your thoughts are for trying to resolve them. There are many ways to decorate blank walls to help solve any issues you have.

Additionally, giving thought to the type of room you are tackling is also an important step. For example, a child’s bedroom is very different from a dining room or master bedroom, where you might have a large wall that needs to be decorated, and there are practicalities to be considered for each.

If you have children, having a large mirror or many pictures hanging at a height where they can be knocked is maybe not the best design, and something like a wall mural or feature wallpaper might be a better option. Placing a mirror on a wall where you will constantly catch your reflection while eating or lounging may not offer the most relaxing experience.

So it is important to think out the space, who and how you use it and then work out the best interior design options for that room.

Wall Decor Ideas: Gather Style Inspiration

classic white interior with a mirror

Once you have done some of your initial planning and have a rough idea of what you are trying to achieve with the room, it is time to start getting some great ideas pulled together. There are many options for drawing inspiration, from Instagram and Pinterest to design blogs from companies specialising in design.

Browse through these, capturing any styles and ideas for wall decor that you like. Taking your time through this process and seeing if you feel the same about certain ideas over a few days is important to test whether you were in a certain mood when you first saw the idea and whether you still feel the same when you come back to it. Committing a big wall space to a strong design or spending money on artwork requires a little time and space to check that they work for you.

Narrow down the ideas or pieces you like and try to settle on a colour scheme if you are bringing colour into the room. Take these back to your original thoughts for the room, see if they fit well, and answer the issues or design ideas you had.

There are many different options available for transforming a room, so below are a few wall decor ideas to give you a starting point.

Large Art

A single large-scale art piece is a great way to make a statement and totally transform a room while only impacting one wall. You can choose a colour to decorate the wall behind the oversized painting to bring contrast and really make it stand out, or leave your wall neutral and let the artwork do the talking!

Art pieces are a fantastic talking point and a great way to bring character and style to a room, and although it can be expensive to buy originals if you are on a tight budget, a print in a nice framework is just as well.

Mirrors

Mirrors are a clever way of bringing more light into a room and making a smaller room appear bigger by reflecting the space. They are also flexible as a design option and give you plenty of alternatives for layout.

You could select one large round mirror or have a row of three hanging evenly spaced, or a large scale floor mirror that rests against the wall.

If you place the mirror opposite a window, it will pick up the natural light and bounce it back into the room, making smaller spaces feel lighter and airier.

Feature Wall

There are many different ways of transforming your empty walls by injecting colour and style, texture or even greenery through live plants! Take a read through the below for more inspiration for an accent wall:

Wall Murals

There are some companies that specialise in producing wall murals that you can apply to a whole wall or to just a portion of it. They are normally applied in the same way as wallpaper, but it is worth confirming that either you or your decorator have the right skills to put one up.

Murals can be modern or traditional images, part of a painting, anything at all, really. The world really is your oyster when selecting the right mural for your room. But think about your colour palette and if you want to keep it the same, and your style of furniture to check that these things work with the wall display you are selecting.

This option may be more expensive than some of the others discussed, especially if you have to pay for a decorator to apply the wall mural. But in terms of impact, they really are a great option.

Fabric

A cheaper option than purchasing artwork or a mural is selecting and displaying a piece of fabric you love. A large wall can easily accommodate a fabric focal point, and hanging is a simple job that anyone can do.

Fabric is a great way to bring something of your travels or heritage into space; it softens and adds texture to a room. The colours from the fabric can be picked up as accents in soft furnishings or paintwork elsewhere in the room and can really add warmth to a living room or bedroom.

Tiles

Perfect for a bathroom or kitchen, tiles can also bring texture and strong design to other rooms. Gone are the days of tiles simply being a colour and choosing between a matt or glossy finish; you can now find tiles in any number of designs.

They can be used to create a mural, or there are wood, marble and concrete effect tiles that provide interest to a room.

They may be a more expensive option if you are decorating large walls and need to employ a tiler to fit them, but they can provide a unique and long-lasting finish to a room.

Living WallMinimalist living room interior style with rattan chair design

If you are looking for slightly more out there wall decor ideas, then a living wall might be an option for you. The trend for bringing the outside in and embracing nature within the home is growing, and it is a way of totally transforming an empty wall and a room itself!

You can take this as far as you like, from wall baskets where you hang plants to floating shelves with an irrigation wall behind. How far you take this idea is up to you, but it gives a green and calming space for you to enjoy and is especially pleasant if you do not have a garden or much access to outdoor space from your home.

Paint

A straightforward and inexpensive option for an entire wall is to paint it in an accent colour. You can use different shades depending on the room you want to decorate. Warm colours will bring walls in slightly and make a room feel more welcoming and cosy, perfect for a living room, whereas choosing a lighter colour will open up a small space.

Picture or Gallery Wall

Displaying your personal photos across a single wall can really make a statement and personalise the space perfectly. Over time, you can also extend the collection across the wall, making it a perfect interior design option for big walls. Framing your pictures in black frames on a white or neutral wall creates a monochrome effect and makes a stylish backdrop to any room.

Set a Budget

An important, albeit less interesting, step to carry out is to set yourself a budget for your wall design. Once you have researched large wall decor ideas, set yourself a budget and stick to it when you start the ordering and buying process.

If your budget does not stretch to your original idea, there are always ways to decorate a wall for less, especially if you have been planning something like how to decorate a large living room wall. Shop around for cheaper comparative items, or consider feature wall ideas that cost less. For example, painting a large wall will cost less than purchasing a large mural and hanging fabric or prints will bring focus to blank walls for less money than purchasing original wall art pieces.

Choose Colour and Pieces

a woman painting a room with orange

Once you have decided on your wall decor ideas and are ready to transform your blank wall, it is time to select your colour palette. If using paint, have you considered the colour of the floor to ensure that the colours complement each other? If you are decorating a wall with pictures, are you looking to inject colour into the empty space, or do you need to accent the existing colours in the room?

A living room scheme allows you to create a warm and inviting space, especially if the room has a fireplace and is all set to enhance the warm colours in the room with its glow.

Have you sized mirrors correctly for the space? If you are looking for large wall decor ideas, then you don’t want undersized mirrors that the blank walls will dwarf.

If you are looking for wall art ideas for bedroom walls, you might want to go with a more abstract or relaxing theme. For example, hanging your favourite art above the bed’s backboard creates a wonderful focal point for the room and leads your eye to the bed.

If you have decided on a gallery wall, a great approach for a blank wall up a stairway or in a dining room, make sure you have decided on your hanging pattern and have enough art to decorate the wall without the effect being diminished. Too few pieces of art on a large wall will only emphasise its size if you aim to cover it. If you cannot afford to create a gallery wall, one large art installation may work better than a few smaller pieces.

Get Decorating!

We hope that we have provided you with some helpful inspiration and the odd pro tip for how to decorate walls to bring interest and change the feel of your room from potentially a negative space to one that is more inviting and enjoyable. Once you have everything in place, you are then ready to transform the walls you have decided to decorate.

If you are going to use paint, make sure you have prepared the walls by sanding them down and taping up any woodwork or sockets. Have the right brushes and rollers to hand and have worked out the amount of paint you need to cover the walls, so you don’t have to break from painting to buy more paint.

If your large wall decor ideas include displaying artwork or hanging mirrors, make sure that you have a tape measure and a spirit level to hand, as well as a hammer and nails. Having a second person on hand to check that your wall decor looks correctly placed from a standing-back position will also help a lot! Once you have worked out where you should place everything, it is just a case of knocking the nails in and hanging your art.

It is important that the house feel that you come in to is inviting and says something about you. We hope that we have been able to help you visualise how to decorate a plain wall and update your decor.

Good luck with your next decorating project, and let us know in the comments below how it went!

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