How To - Choose An Accent Wall?

An accent wall is great way to add interest to a room. That bright daisy yellow that you absolutely love will be a brilliant flash of color on a single study wall. Treating one wall in a room differently by using paint color, texture, wallpaper etc. is one of the easiest ways to bring a dull room to life. 

How do you decide which wall will work best as an accent? Here's some tips to help you get it right.

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Experiment with bold color for an accent wall


Color Theory 

Color can play tricks on the eye. Warm color tones like red, orange and yellow, tend to make a room look smaller while cooler hues like blues and greens may serve to enlarge a small room. Because wall color influences the way that the eye perceives space, painting the length of a small rectangular room dark blue could make it feel even more narrow than it is, while a light aqua will open it up.

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The two photographs above are a great example of the same room looking more spacious when a light green is used versus a fire engine red


Focal Point

Pick an accent wall in any room based on what immediately draws the eye, i.e. a natural focal point. This could be a large statue of Ganesha or an interesting piece of antique furniture, an accent wall behind a eye catching piece will make it stand out even more, serving as a frame to make the feature pop.

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The textured wall behind the Buddha statue emphasizes the focus on the statue


Visual Temperature Of Light

The natural light entering a room varies according the room's location in your home and  influences your perception of colour and texture. A north or east facing room will get morning light which has a cooler visual temperature than peak afternoon sunlight that enters south and west facing rooms. As a result, north and east facing rooms are ideal for warm toned walls like fire red, while in a western room it may seem too bright and jarring.

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The same room looks much more serene with the use of green instead of orange because of the play of light


Keep The Architecture Of The Room In Mind

When choosing an accent wall take note of the architectural features of a room. If your living room has an arched glass door that overlooks a pretty flowering garden a soft peach or bold gold paint will make it look picture postcard perfect. An accent wall can highlight an architectural feature like an archway and the beautiful view.

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The various colors frame the four seasons seen through an architectural arched doorway


Visual Balance


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A green accent wall in a study is balanced by very white furniture for visual balance and looks clutter free

A highlighted wall needs to be in balance with the other decor in a room. Too much clutter against an accent wall will completely defeat its purpose. The headboard wall in a bedroom or a the study wall behind a desk or bookcase are a great choice for an accent wall, not cluttered and still creating a visual focal point in a room. Painting a barely there wall around a really large cupboard or many framed family photos will have no visual impact at all. 


Ranjita Bhandari

The Author

Home Concierge


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