Half & half living room paint ideas

Updated February 21, 2017

Go beyond the "accent wall" with a more dramatic half and half living room. Adding a bold colour on a single wall might make things pop but a half and half theme is even more engaging. Give your living room dual personalities or just a hint of duality with two-tone painting ideas.


Vertical stripes on a wall may sound odd, but they can lend a very interesting and elegant style to a living room. If you don't want the stripes to be the most prominent feature of the room, use a subtle contrast between two similar colours like white and off-white or the same colour in slightly different tints. Make the stripes as narrow or wide as you like, but remember that the wider the stripes, the more subtle the effect. If you are using highly contrasting colours, take care not to make your stripes too narrow as it can end up looking manic.


Start by painting opposite walls in two different colours so that each wall is opposite a wall of the other colour; there will be two walls of each colour. Choose two of the walls to add a large, graphic stencil to. The image could have personal or family significance, such as a crest, or simply be a decorative motif. Paint the image with the colour from the opposite wall. Choose two highly contrasting colours like white and red or a subtle contrast like cream and light tan.


This is a simple idea that gives big results. Divide the room in half horizontally, and paint the top half one colour and the bottom half another. You can make the dividing line as high or low as you wish; make it higher to make the ceiling seem higher. Make your job easier by using a laser line and painter's tape to divide the walls. Start with the top colour so you don't drip onto the bottom colour as you work.


Wainscoting is a traditional half and half treatment that can be kept conventional or be updated by pairing it with an unexpected colour like lime or poppy. Wainscoting may be natural wood or painted, usually white. If your living room already features wainscoting, freshen it up with a coat of paint. If not, adding it will create a whole new look in the room, even changing the way you see your furniture.


Transitions add interest and detail to a half and half paint job. Instead of switching to a new wall colour at the corner, make it interesting by switching in the middle of a wall. Use a patchwork of diamond shapes or squares to transition from one colour into the next.

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