Transform Your Room with Accent Wall

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Painting is one of the economical ways to refresh your home. But you’re afraid to use vibrant or too much dramatic color in a room. Play it safe and still make a bold statement by painting just one wall with a splash of accent color. A simple and quick way to add depth and accentuate your home interior is to paint an accent wall. It’s also a beautiful way to showcase some of your favorite décor. Or with the great paint choice, you can have the wall showcased with color only. Accenting a wall can even highlight the architectural features of a room.

Accent walls contrast with primary walls and boost aesthetic appeal through dark and light combinations. But while accent walls are definitely worth experimenting, they have to be incorporated in a way that compliments the interior look, layout and furniture. In the wrong place it will only look odd and confusing, that’s why picking the right wall to feature is so critical.

Read below to learn how to pick an accent wall color:

Choose the right wall to accent.

Color on accent wall alone can change the look and feel of a room without being overbearing but picking the right wall is the secret behind success in this strategy. Typically, the first wall you notice when you walk into a room is best wall to accent. This wall features a bookcase, fireplace, wainscoting or anything else that catches the eye. Sometimes, however, that is not the case. Many variables will be in play such as:

  • Solid walls – meaning no doors and windows. You may be tempted to “frame” your beautiful French doors or the large windows with a spectacular view, but oftentimes this will only distract instead of enhancing.
  • In an oblong or rectangular rooms, the furthest short wall is best to accent. This will draw attention and make your walls appear closer. On the other hand, using long walls as accent walls will only emphasize length of the room.
  • If there no focal points you can create one. Look for features that will offer aesthetic appeal such as framed photos, sculpture, and art and paint the background wall to enhance appeal.
  • Choose an accent wall that won’t be too bare of or crowded with other design elements. If there is fireplace or natural focal point in a room, then adding another accent wall will only create an imbalance. Accent walls work best when there seems to be a logical reason why a particular wall invites special treatment, compared with other walls in the room.

Consider color theory

Warm hues play the trick in the perception, pulling the wall towards the eyes, making a space appear smaller. Choose a wall that can handle foreshortened when painting an accent wall with warm hues such as orange, yellow and red. Using this color theory, painting a side wall red can make a room feel too narrow, but painting an end wall in a long, narrow room will make the room feel more balanced in size. Cool colors such as green, purple, blue, tend to pull away from eyes, making a space appear larger or wider. Another option is using your ceiling as your accent wall; paint a low ceiling a cool color to give the impression that the ceiling is higher than it really is.

One simple rule to remember is that visually, warm colors advance, and cool colors retreat. So, if a hallway looks too long, a warm accent color on the end wall will make it look shorter, or if you have a small narrow room, a cool accent color will visually expand the space.

Consider the room’s exposure

When you are looking to paint an accent wall, consider where the room is located and how much natural light it is exposed to. In an east or north facing room, warm-hued accent walls work best since natural light is cooler than the warmer light coming from a southern- or western-facing window. Rooms with cool-hued accent walls are best for western or southern rooms.

Develop a color scheme for the room

It’s important not to overdo one color. Use 60-30-10 rule when painting or decorating a room: 60% neutral color, 30% applied to a second color and 10% reserved for the accent color. A harmonious color scheme also takes into consideration the color’s saturation level as part of the design. Use tint as dominant color, toned color as the secondary color, with your accent color being most vivid and pure hue of the three. For a more cohesive look to your space try using your accent color more than once, in area rugs, throw pillows or other decor items. Balance “color impact” with existing features and planned furnishings.

Account room’s purpose

According to color psychology, colors convey a certain energy and feel. For instance, it likely doesn’t make sense to accent your living room with lime green or hot pink if it doesn’t fit the room. Red is known to known to stimulate the metabolism while increasing heart and respiratory rates. This is why red doesn’t make a good choice as an accent wall in a bedroom and exactly why it would work better in the kitchen. Think about the mood you want to create and the purpose of your room.


Accenting a wall is simple to achieve, but can make a dramatic difference in your space. Whatever direction you decide to take, just remember it is all about the color. An accent wall, with a well-chosen color, can bring into focus areas that would otherwise go unnoticed, or help to maximize the look of your space.

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