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The 3 Designer Tips for Choosing an Accent Wall Color

White Dahlia Design

Accent walls have been a continuous debate in the Interior Design world since the early 2000s. Are they in or are they out? Honestly, there is really no right or wrong answer to this question but rather is influenced on several factors in an enclosed space. Factors such as sunlight, focal point, room use, perception, and color just to name a few. So if you've fallen into the belief that accent walls are a thing of the past and very outdated, know that just like in the fashion world things are never really going out of style but are sort of just improved throughout the years. We're here to give you a few important pointers that will help you pick the right paint color for your feature wall. Keep reading for some tips, and accent wall paint ideas that may just inspire you for your next project.

Tip 1 - Room Direction & Focal Point

White Dahlia Design

The first thing you should consider before really getting into paint colors is the room direction and focal points. The amount of sun you receive will affect the look of your paint at different times of the day. For instance, a north-facing home typically gets less sunlight while an east-facing room does. Since north-facing rooms get less sunlight you'd want to opt for colors with warmer undertones to keep the room from feeling stark and cold. The same rule goes for east-facing rooms, you'd want to opt for colors with cooler undertones to keep the colors in the room balanced.

Real Homes I House Beautiful

Another important point to consider before painting an accent wall is to look at whether that wall you are wanting to paint is a focal point, or if it can be a focal point. The focal point and interior design is a fundamental design element! It's easy to just paint a wall a color you have picked out, but if done so incorrectly you can make the room look a little awkward, draw your attention to features that don't really enhance the space, or create the wrong perception making a room look smaller or shorter when not intended.

A great tip is to walk into your room and notice where your eye is naturally drawn to. Are you automatically drawn to the wall of the headboard, TV, Fireplace, Alcove, or even the Ceiling? This is where you can start to decide the color and location of your painted feature wall. Your focal point can also be a starting base for building the rest of your design and decor on. There are so many accent wall paint ideas where you can get a little more creative. Have fun and get creative with accent wall painters tape and stencils!


Tip 2 - Room Use & Room Size

White Dahlia Design

Believe it or not, the room use and size of the room are factors that help to determine the color and size of the wall you will be painting. One of the most simple rules when it comes to color picking is that darker colors can make a room feel smaller, and vise versa for lighter colors. However, depending on the size and scale of the room, choosing a darker color can work in your favor.

Color can also help to enhance your design style. Take a look at this small lunchroom we designed above. If we went all black the room would feel very closed in since this space isn't very large, but with just the coffee counter back wall painted black it gives off the perception of contrast, brings that back wall in a little, and ties into the design aesthetic. We fell in love with this little modern industrial facelift and it definitely helped to boost the business. We've talked about the advantages and the power of Interior Design for business in the previous blog and you can read all about it if you're a small business needing some guidance. Bonus? we also have a free quiz to help you discover your own design style!


Another great example when it comes to color, size, and our first point focal point. The design aesthetic of this wall is very monochromatic white and black. The feature wall is painted black and is contrasted with the white framed art. The focal point itself is a combination of several design elements on quite a small wall. We love love love gallery walls! that's why we created a free guide to help you create your own.

Tip 3 - Choosing the Right Color & Painting Tips

The Spruce I Decorpad

We've mentioned the power of color psychology in a previous blog, as well as a few of our top paint picks for 2020. There are countless colors to choose from and it can be just overwhelming, so before you pick up a can of paint make sure you take into account the mood and design style you are wanting to achieve. Colors will help you achieve that bright and airy feeling, dark and moody, nature-inspired, or whatever design style you desire. One of the questions we ask in our free consultations is, "how do you want to feel in the space?". Consider this question when narrowing down your paint choices.

Say you want to go bold with a pop of color? First, take a look at your existing items and colors you have going on in your room to see what will work and what won't. Will the colors clash or will they complement each other? If you've got a fairly basic neutral pallet to start with you can most likely get away with getting a little more creative like highlighting all the moldings and trims. If you want to highlight a fairly large wall a great tip is to opt for a color that's already in the same color family as the exiting colors you have at play. For example, a white with a slightly cool grey underdone would pair well with a cooler grey vs a warmer grey.

And last but not least, the best tip we can give you is to use color swatches on the walls you want to paint, and I'm not talking about a painted fan deck. You can pick up a small paint sample to paint on your wall before you purchase the large cans. Allow the paint to fully dry and observe the colors at different times of the day, with different lighting temperatures, and against existing large furniture items you want to keep in that room. Do these colors translate to your space? How do they make you feel?

Better Homes and Gardens

The feature painted wall trend is here to stay and we're not complaining. We hope this post will help you on your next design projects! And as always, we are here to help, so shoot us a message to discuss your next project.



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