How to Decorate a Blank Wall: Go From Drab to Fab in Three Easy Steps

The beginning of a new year is the perfect time to refresh, rejuvenate, and give well-worn areas of your home a fresh facelift. Whether you’ve been putting off repainting a hallway, or just can’t seem get the creative juices flowing, read on for three easy steps to transform any wall in your home from blank canvas to show-stopping masterpiece.


1. Discover Your Style.

Are you drawn to exotic patterns and colors, or do you find tranquility in white spaces and monochromatic décor? If you are unsure of your own style, begin observing what you are attracted to, then work backwards to develop your own tastes. Start by collecting images: magazine clippings, Pinterest posts, photographs, or even scrapbook paper patterns that catch your eye. Once you have a few favorites, spread them all out and look for similarities. Is there a common color palette or theme? Are most of the images organized or abstract? Are the colors mostly neutral or bright and bold? Oftentimes, there are endless possibilities for a decorating a space, so being familiar with your own unique style will help you to narrow down the many options and give you a starting point.

2. Consider Adding Paneling, Paint, or Paper.

When starting from scratch or starting over, consider adding improvements to the structure, such as bead board or wainscoting. Paired with the right style home, paneling accents can increase charm and visual interest. Also, adding paneling will automatically divide the wall and increase visual impact. Another option is to add wallpaper, paint, or floor-to-ceiling curtains. Think back to your style personality: Are you a “pattern person” or more comfortable with solid colors? Once you decide on the structural basics, think about the purpose for the wall to complete your final design plan.

3. Play Up the Space’s Purpose.

Is your wall in a bedroom, an entryway, or a kitchen? Does an essential need already exist for the space (think inspirational decor for an office wall, a row of hooks for a mudroom, or space-amplifying solutions for a narrow foyer)? If your wall is in a bedroom, consider hanging identical items of varying sizes above a bed or dresser to create a textured feeling and cover the space. Grapevine wreaths, Available at most craft stores, can be spray painted to match the room décor and accessorized with shells or flowers for the summer, and berries and birds for the spring. The same look can be achieved by hanging a collection of wall clocks of varying sizes, painted ceiling medallions, or mirrors.

If you are struggling with dressing a mudroom or an office wall, consider a hanging organization system or an inspirational quote. Home décor stores offer several combinations of shelves, hooks, hanging drawers, chalkboards and corkboards that will bring order and neatness to the space. Stick-on vinyl inspirational quotes, which can be found at any craft store, are another interesting and inexpensive way to add personality to a workspace.

When decorating a dark hallway or foyer wall, the use of mirrors, lights and geometric shapes can maximize space and light. Hanging a mirror in an entryway or propping an oversized mirror against the wall will help to reflect light and make the room feel larger. For long horizontal walls or hallways, try hanging a photo gallery in a tight grid or straight horizontal line. Choosing matching frames will help the eye glide easily across the space.

Once you have identified your own unique style, considered some structural additions, and made a plan that matches the space’s purpose, go for it! Paint, panel, frame, hang, and re-hang. And don’t forget, it’s never too late to start over.


Kristin Hauch-Melton

Kristin Hauch-Melton is a writer and communications consultant. She earned a degree in Communications and Business from University of North Florida, serves on the board for the Fayette Chamber of Commerce and lives in Peachtree City with her husband, horse, and dog.