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Tips for Decorating a Large Wall

October 05, 2022
Living room in Asher at The Orchards by Brookfield Residential in Edmonton AB

Figuring out how to decorate a big blank wall in your home can feel daunting. You want a solution that is appropriately sized, reflects your personal style, and is within your budget. Fortunately, there are plenty of creative, budget-friendly methods to style any large wall in a way you’re sure to love.

Large Italian art in the dining room at Savona 2 at Cranstons Riverstone in Calgary, AB

1. Large-Scale Artwork

It seems intuitive, doesn’t it? Large wall = Large art. It’s a great solution for maintaining the scale of the wall. We’ve all seen big walls with a lot of “that’s-too-small” artwork and it usually looks awkward or cluttered. If it’s a big wall, you need something that doesn’t disappear and can hold its own in the space.

Oftentimes the biggest challenge is finding artwork that fits within our budget. Bigger seems to equate to “more expensive” and, if it’s a piece you absolutely love, sometimes it’s worth the investment. If it truly speaks to you, you won’t be swapping it out anytime soon.

If you love changing up your home décor, you’re going to need a budget-friendly option. Large-scale engineer prints from your local printer are an extremely affordable way to fill up that wall space without breaking the bank.

Black and white gallery wall in a dining room

2. Classic Gallery Wall

There’s some debate as to whether or not gallery walls are still in style. The general consensus is that gallery walls will always be in style, but what you choose to incorporate may lose its appeal over time. A classic gallery wall should stay away from things now considered overplayed like canvas prints or anything related to “Live, Laugh, Love” vibes.

A gallery wall done in a grid pattern with matching frames is timeless. They’re typically more uniform, less chaotic on the eyes, and, when done correctly, let the pieces you’re displaying truly shine. Black and white photographs, album covers, maps of your favorite places to travel are all pieces that can be styled and curated to create something visually interesting without becoming cluttered.

Bedroom with wallpaper in Slate at Cranston Riverstone by Brookfield Residential in Calgary AB

3. Wallpaper

Wallpaper is having a moment this year and we are here for it. Not only is it budget-friendly, but it comes in almost any design you can imagine and, if you’re not ready for the commitment, there are peel-and-stick options.

Choosing the right wallpaper doesn’t need to be hard! Whatever your style may be, there are wallpaper solutions for everyone – textures, patterns, colors – that can be combined to create a room design that is uniquely yours. If you want to double down on the drama, layer some oversized artwork on your wallpaper to make an even bigger statement on your big wall.

Another fun twist? Try framing your wallpaper as artwork itself. It’s a great way to bring some pattern into the room if you’re not ready to commit to full installation or want to cut the cost of buying multiple rolls of wallpaper.

Color block mural wall in a nursery at Fillmore at BLVD by Brookfield Residential in Dublin CA

4. A Mural

It may sound intimidating to paint your own mural but it can be surprisingly easy! You get a bold look without the high price tag and some extra bragging rights when your guests compliment your stunning creation. Sounds like a win-win!

Abstract shapes, color blocks, and thick geometric lines are especially trendy right now which means you don’t need to be an artist to replicate the look. Worst case scenario, if you don’t love the final result, you can simply paint over it and try again (or do something else entirely!).

Hunter green millwork feature wall at Hudson in Chappelle Gardens in Edmonton, AB

5. Woodwork

Sure, things like “board and batten” and “wainscoting” sound fancy, but in reality, it’s just attaching wood to a wall in an interesting manner. Head to your local hardware store to have wood or MDF strips cut to the proper size, attach with carpenter nails or wood glue, and paint it out in the color of your choice for an expensive look (done on a budget).

Combine it with another element to really make a statement. Adding a simple paneled frame of trim around artwork gives it more of a presence and adds a detailed, finished look that elevates the piece even more. Split your wall with wainscoting on the lower half and striking wallpaper above. Mix and match with different combinations to find the perfect balance between elegant, playful, dramatic, and totally you.

Decorative mirror and dining table in Plan 1 of Luna at The Landing in Tustin, CA

6. Mirrors

Mirrors are a great go-to when filling wall space. They’re a great base if you’re opting for a layered look and they brighten up any room by reflecting more light around it. You can choose to hang them or lean a large mirror directly against the wall.

Adding a single large mirror, or even several smaller ones, is an excellent way of adding interest to a wall without a massive commitment. They’re a relatively neutral piece as they reflect your existing décor rather than working as an element you have to incorporate – or risk competing with what is already there.

The study with diagonal shelves filled with books at the Retreat at Dripping Springs in Texas

7. Shelves

When style meets function, it’s a beautiful thing. Shelves are a great solution for filling a big blank wall as well as providing storage and a display for some of your favorite pieces. Whether you go for floating shelves or a bookcase, you’ll have ample space to showcase framed photos, books, plants, vacation trinkets, or anything else you feel proudly states “this is my home.”

Macrame wall hanging in a bedroom in Asher at The Orchards in Edmonton AB

8. Wall Hangings

Incorporating texture is a fun and creative way to style a large wall. From macramé hangings to industrial installations, there are so many ways to add dimension and depth in a gallery-worthy way.

Hanging a beautiful blanket, quilt, or tapestry is an effective and fast way to fill the space of a large wall. It can be anything from a vintage patchwork quilt to a highly textured woven blanket – anything that speaks to your style. Added bonus? They’re a great way to soundproof a room and cozy it up as winter weather approaches.

Living room details at Bayberry at The Groves by Brookfield Residential in Whittier CA

To create a three-dimensional layered look, mix together rattan and wicker baskets. This works best if they are round and fairly shallow so that they don’t stick out from the wall too much. Check out your local thrift store for some budget-friendly options.

9. Paint it out

Turning your big blank space into a painted accent wall is a great way to visually “fill” the area without hanging a thing! Go for a bold color to really make an impact and break up that bare wall. It’s a great way to dip your toes into something dramatic and vibrant without committing to painting the entire room.

Faux wallpaper treatment on an entry wall

You can also use paint as a playful twist on wallpaper by creating faux wallpaper. Loose, hand painted themes in simple lines, dots, dashes, herringbone, and chevron patterns work well for this technique.

Minimalist great room in Carmini 2 at Cranston Riverstone by Brookfield Residential in Calgary AB

10. Embrace the blank

There’s some truth to the phrase “Less is more.” Negative space is a key feature in design. It feels simple and intentional when mixed with pared down furnishings and minimal color and patterns. The minimalist route is easy and chic (and did we mention budget-friendly?) while still creating a warm, welcoming space when done correctly.

Great room in Sereno at Cranston Riverstone by Brookfield Residential in Calgary AB

As with all things home design, there isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach to decorating a large blank wall. Don’t be afraid to mix and match ideas to figure out exactly what you love and what speaks to your style.

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