Tips on Painting a Feature Wall

Updated February 21, 2017

Having a feature wall is a great way to highlight a room and its furnishings. Sometimes referred to as an accent wall, a feature wall is one wall in the room that is painted differently than other walls in the room. The end result is having a focal point in the room that enhances the apparent size of the space while also complementing the furniture and decor. Keeping a few tips in mind when planning your accent wall will help produce ideal results.

Select a Wall

The first decision you will make in the process is selecting the wall that will become the feature wall of the room. As a general rule of thumb, you never want to select a wall that contains windows. This is because the sunlight that comes through the window can cast a glare that makes it difficult for the feature wall to stand out. It also creates the added challenge of finding window treatments that enhance the feature wall. For these reasons, it is recommended that you select a wall with no windows. Similarly, the chosen wall should be free of doorways. This is because a person walking through the doorway would be unable to see the feature wall. The best choice is a wall with no doors or windows, which can easily be seen by someone who passes the room and glances in.

Choice of Color

The colour selection for your feature wall is a critical decision, for a variety of reasons. The first thought is that the colour should complement the furniture and decorative items within the room. This is certainly true, and in the case of an average-sized room, this is the only consideration to keep in mind when it comes to colour selection. Small rooms should also consider the contrasting aspect of colours. Having a dark room with a light-coloured feature wall can make the room appear larger, because the room will appear to stretch out into the direction of the feature wall. Doing the opposite, however, and having a light room with a dark feature wall will close in the room and make it appear smaller than it really is.

Surface Preparation

Surface preparation is done in much the same way as any other painting job. Loose paint should be scraped away and the surface sanded smooth. The key difference when preparing the surface of a feature wall is that extra attention should be given to the corners. When all walls are painted the same colour, there is no reason to worry about paint carrying over from one wall to the next. With a feature wall, where one wall has a strong contrast to the walls next to it, it is important to have clean, sharp lines that divide the surfaces of each wall. This helps the feature wall have a neat and clean appearance, and provides a more professional finish. Use masking tape or painter's tape to create straight lines against the walls that will not be painted.

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About the Author

Jerry Garner has been writing semi-professionally for more than 15 years. The body of Garner's work includes informative articles, news and current events and historical essays. He is an avid sports fan and frequently writes about outdoor activities online.