Feature walls are a great way to alter the style and add value to your home. A feature wall can be done in various ways, but really we’re just trying to create something that gets a lot of attention when people walk in the room. It should act as the centerpiece.
Feature walls can be done on just about any budget, and often it’s the creativity that goes into the design that makes the wall stand out much more than the cost (and labor) that went into it. Here are some ideas to get your creative wheels turning.
This is one of the more expensive options and possibly one of the tougher ones to do as a DIY. But, the results are hard to argue with. Cultured stone comes in all shapes and colors to fit into any room. Ideally, you might find some stone on sale at a local building store to try and save some of the cost on this one.
If possible, ask if there are samples you can take home. With different lighting and different colors, sometimes these types of products can look very different at home than in the store, and this is something you want to be sure of. Stone is fairly permanent, so take your time deciding.
Don’t feel like you need to do a whole wall of stone either. With feature walls, there’s definitely a point where more is not better, and it just becomes too much. Sometimes just a smaller amount on a specific portion of the wall is enough to get the effect you’re looking for.
Creativity tip: when we’re doing feature walls for a custom home build, we often mix 2 or 3 different types of cultured stone to get a one-of-a-kind custom look.
There are so many options when it comes to tile. The building stores are full of samples. This should allow you to get really creative. Don’t be afraid to be bold! Mix sizes and shapes to see what can be done. The key here is to have something that results in the ‘wow factor,’ so think outside the box.
As with the culture stone, ask if there are samples you can take to ensure that you like it just as much at home as you did in the store. There’s nothing worse than realizing it’s not the right thing until after it’s on the wall. Tile is tough to remove, so take your time making your choice.
This one wins the cost-effective contest. It does work, though. The paint color for this can be as bold as you want it to be. It generally works the best when the rest of the walls in that particular room are one color; this way, the feature wall isn’t competing against any other walls.
When you’re painting a feature wall, you should take into account the room. Consider where the paint starts and stops. This can be used to define a space. It’s not just about putting color in the wall; it’s about creating a defined space with a central focus.
Creativity tip: during custom builds, we work a lot with interior designers. When they come up with ideas, everyone looks at them like they have 10 heads because the ideas seem so far out there. But when you see the idea come to life, it’s amazing how cool and unique it is.
Make a built-in entertainment wall or fireplace
This is definitely going to be a lot more work and a much higher cost than the painting; however, this type of feature wall can be both functional and act as a centerpiece (if you want your T.V. to hold center stage). Usually, this feature wall is designed around the T.V location (although it doesn’t need to be). Consider incorporating some shelving for TV components and some extra shelving for sculptures or art pieces.
Often with these types of feature walls, a little extra room is required to accommodate the shelving depth. 16” deep is usually enough for TV components, and 6-8” is plenty for artwork, sculptures, or other decorative items. Take this into account before starting your project. Measure out how much room you’ll have left once you eat up that extra space. Ensure the room won’t feel too crowded and that there’s still room to move around the furniture.
One great addition to any feature wall is an electric fireplace. I know what you’re thinking, cheesy and fake looking. The new models that have come out in the last 5 years are actually far from it. Most people would have a difficult time telling the difference between a new electric and a gas fireplace. The best part is that all they need is a plug and are often only a few inches in depth. There’s just something about the look of a fireplace that adds a little extra and a whole lot of warmth to the room.
I know you were waiting for this one. This really seems to have taken off lately. It’s all over Pinterest, and for a good reason – it looks great! Many of the original ones were done with old pallets as they’re relatively accessible, however now Home Depot has different types of distressed wood and wood paneling that looks like Barnwood, so you don’t even have to go hunting for it.
The truth is, any old distressed wood will do. If you want to stay true to the original Barnwood reclaimed style, you might need to be resourceful to track some down, but to be honest, most of the people who have old distressed wood kicking around their farm or shop yard sometimes end up using it for firewood. So don’t be afraid to talk to them if you see a pile of old wood out back. Some of them would probably be happy to see it cleaned up.
If you really can’t find anything, and you have lots of patience, you can make your own wood for this. Any wood will become discolored and turn grey when exposed to the weather. You can take any wood that you like and leave it outside for a year exposed to the sun and the rain, and it will become weathered.
If you want a really distressed look, beat it up with a hammer or chain first and put some holes in it with a drill. Then leave it outside for a year. You now have weather wood.
A quick tip: if you’re going this route and you’re planning on purchasing lumber for this, ask if they have any lower quality grade lumber (usually referred to as #3). This will not only be cheaper but will look more rustic right from the start.
One last tip for Barnwood, if you want to make it stand out, add a bit of color. With all of the neutral tones in the wood, a bit of color really makes the wall pop. Something as simple as a vase with red roses or a small piece of colorful art is all it takes.
We hope this helps you get started! Now get creative!