How to Paint an Accent Wall in the Living Room – 10 Steps on Nailing it

Whether it be DIY or professionally done, homeowners and design improvement experts are well-acquainted with painting the living room’s accent wall. Compared to other spaces in the house with an accent wall, having one in the living room is more significant considering that it is the frontline. Painting is relatively cheap and easy compared to other options of designing the accent wall but it is more than just grabbing a paintbrush and a bucket of paint. Knowing how to paint a wall is the first step on how to nail the dream aesthetic for the space. To ensure the success of the project, we have 10 steps for you to follow on how to paint an accent wall in the living room. 

1. Know Which Wall to Paint

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To prevent the painting fiasco, the first step is knowing which wall to paint. In knowing which one, there are plenty of considerations. Establish which wall is the focal point of the living room. As you enter the space, which wall stands out the most even without the change of color. Let it be the center of attraction. Most of the walls that make a good accent wall are the ones with a series of windows or even a fireplace as the focal point. Pick a wall that you think indicates a different character compared to the others. 

2. Complete the Needed Materials 

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To make the painting more efficient and convenient, complete all the needed materials. From the paintbrushes, rollers, tapes, and paints, everything needed should be within proximity of the work area. This will save you the time to run and go get the materials completed during the painting process. Do not forget to have a ladder in place. You would not want to have a hard time reaching the higher segments of the wall. Inconsistencies in paint quality can be a bummer too. Make a list of all the materials that you need and run to the nearest hardware before anything else. 

3. Identify the Type of Paint to Use

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Paint has plenty of types and finishes to choose from. Every space or surface at home is designated with a suggested paint type and finish. Durability and quality of finish are now offered aligned to improvements due to technological advancement. These days, especially in the DIY world, customers are becoming more experimental with their paint type and finish. It establishes a visual impact on the scheme you want to make. 

Paint types include water and oil-based. Water-based paints are relatively cheap and can be mixed with water measured depending on the preferred consistency of the paint. It is a sustainable option considering its low levels of toxic emissions, is fade-proof, and does not require a pre-treatment. Compared to oil-based paints, water-based ones dry quickly and are susceptible to cracking. 

On the other hand, oil-based paint is a flexible type that can be used almost on all types of surfaces. They introduce intriguing durability without compromised richness in its finish. They may come too bold but using oil-based paint discharges powerful fumes that are somehow overwhelming, especially during the drying process. 

4. Mix the Paint 

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Mixing the paint can be a challenge, especially if you do not know what specific color to get. Get as many swatch samples as possible from the hardware and lay them on the wall to see which one would work. If you have ready variations of paint at home that you want to use, working on it can be an option too. If it is not the color of choice, maybe tweaking it a little or mixing it with other colors would suffice. Instead of disposing of the paint, reusing it can be a more sustainable choice. To test it out, paint a portion of the mixed formula on the wall and see if you need to adjust or add more. Paint mixing is the most crucial part of the process but it is also fun to do. Besides, paint mixing can now be done in the hardware for you to achieve your preferred hue or tone for the accent wall. 

5. Prep the Wall

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In painting the accent wall, one must free the area from clutter. We would not want paint dotting on the couch or on the table. We highly suggest preparing the wall with tape and wallpaper. Move the furniture as far away from the project area as possible. Take all the decor off the wall and away from the area. This prevents the decorations from being ruined in cases of paint spilling around. Apart from the painting process, it is the heavy lifting that requires labor and time. 

Prepping the wall is not just keeping it free from clutter. It also means the surface is smooth and without the presence of walls prior to painting. We highly suggest purchasing putty from the nearest hardware and DIY the filling of the holes. Besides, it can be quite disturbing to see holes while painting the accent wall. We want texture but we do not want holes around the area. Once the putty is all dried up, ensure that the wall is also clean and free from dirt. A damp cloth can be used to ensure that the wall is good to go for painting. 

6. Ensure it Matches the Color Palette

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The most significant part of painting an accent wall is to guarantee that the chosen color matches the color palette of the living room. It should contrast the dominant color of the living room. If the entire room is in a lighter shade, opt for a darker one for the accent wall and vice versa. This way, it is highlighted and makes a huge difference to the dominant color of the living room. Work with a color that is contrasting with the existing shade of the walls. It is called an accent wall because it is rather special than the others. 

7. Be Open for Alternatives

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If painting is not your thing and you have an accent wall idea in mind that is not possible to work with paint, be open to other alternatives. This includes opting for wallpaper. It introduces a visual aesthetic compared to paint because they are pre-made and are often come in a variety of designs. The infinite choices of patterns, colors, textures, and designs tell how unique an accent wall can be with a wallpaper. Being creative can even work for a combination of both paint and wallpaper. Besides, both of them come cheap and are easy to apply. Wallpapers are more direct compared to paint. Using paint for the accent wall means it will come out bold and solid while wallpapers are already manufactured with a specific design. Choose the one that you think will work for your desired design for the accent wall. It would be best to conduct research on their durability to withstand heat, humidity, and temperature. 

8. Highlight Textures

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We all know how flat a wall can be. Texture makes a huge difference in how the surfaces make us feel with or without touching. It highlights the purpose of space looking less realistic. Different types of paint come with different textures. Glossy, matte, and eggshell are the common finishes. Each one introduces a definite character for the living room. We want to acquire as much texture as possible to complement the look we are rooting for. Everything else in the living room is sleek and edgy. 

9. Pick a Suitable Painting Technique

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When you already have everything ready, the next big step is planning the strategy to make the process smooth. In painting a wall, we highly suggest painting the corners and working your way towards the center. Have the edges and corners all taped up before starting to prevent unnecessary drips and creases from occurring. There are different painting techniques that you can work with. It can be solid, gradient, or washed depending on the look that you are rooting for. Accent walls are ought to be different and unique that is why most people experiment on the painting technique they prefer to use. It is your time to get creative with the accent wall. 

10. Paint the Accent Wall 

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Get your paintbrush, roller, and paint ready. It is time to start bringing color to your walls. Whether the base is wood or concrete, we highly suggest painting the wall with primer. If primer is not available, using white paint can suffice too. This will allow the paint color to stand out and reveal its true color. Imagine painting on wood without priming the material. It ends up having patches or discoloration.  Painting the wall with a primer first will seal the deal with creases and unevenness. Once the priming process is done, start painting the accent wall. Begin on the edges of the wall and work your way towards the center. After covering the entire face, see if there is unevenness in the color of the wall. If there is, might as well paint another coating until you are satisfied. Wait until the paint dries up and you are ready to put back things in place.