Trends may come and go, but the feature wall has been an enduring element when it comes to adding interest to a home.
But this humble design feature is evolving, so we’ve called in interior designer and 2014 winner of The Block Shannon Vos, for some tips on how to achieve this bold new look.
1. Don’t be afraid
First and foremost, don’t hold back, Vos suggests when approaching a feature wall.
“You find that people make a big, bold decision and then right at the end, they kind of back away from it and then regret it,” he says.
“Be brave with your house because at the end of the day, it’s not permanent, and you can change it again, so give it a go.”
2. Use multiple colours
Traditionally, feature walls are painted one colour, but in 2022 people are embracing more eclectic and creative design.
Vos points to the art deco style known as Memphis Milano – which incorporates splashes of colour and intersecting shapes – as a way to create interesting and dynamic surfaces.
“You don’t have to be an artist or a qualified painter to do something really creative”, Vos shares.
“Have an idea, with a good combination of colours, then just have some fun with it.”
3. Plan your colour in context
Cohesion is critical when using colours in a room, so you need to consider existing features when planning.
“Colour needs to be told in a story. You can’t just have some random colour pop,” Vos explains.
“There needs to be a relationship to the rest of the room. Whether that is with your decor, your furniture, your pillows, or even artwork.”
Taking a trip to the hardware store with these in hand is hardly practical, and neither is coming home with a bag full of paint swatches, so instead use an app like Coloursmith by Taubmans.
Using the app, you can snap photos of any item including home features like tiles, fittings or furniture and confidently pair your paint colours. You can even create your own personal colour, name it, and order a sample pot straight away.
4. Add texture
If you really want a wall that stands out, make it three-dimensional.
“Patterns and textures are in,” Vos says.
“I like to see feature walls with added architectural details. Think features like timber panelling or some kind of cladding.”
Although they can be pricey to implement, adding raised layers will boost the energy in the space, creating a whole new degree of texture and individuality – especially when the design concept matches with the overall theme of the home.
Then add colour around these new textures to create something really eye-catching.
5. Preparation is key
The most important part of creating an amazing feature wall is to start with the right canvas.
“Preparation is everything. A lot of people paint a feature wall in their bedroom, which has often had years of people leaning up against it and all this grease and grime. You can paint over that, but it’s going to look terrible,” Vos says.
Wash walls thoroughly. Also, fill in cracks and holes before you do the undercoat and sand back any imperfections to create a smooth clean base.
Doing shapes will also require some extra prep work, Vos adds.
“Make sure you clearly tape around the areas you want to keep your lines within. Masking tape isn’t always going to cut it with shapes. For the tricker curves, you’ll need cut out the shapes using large sheets of paper.”